Monday, 16 February 2009

Artist in Residence - Jan Hendrickse

A sound artist and composer, Jan will be exploring the materials and surfaces that we use at John Jones in order to discover their sonic properties. He is currently investigating ways of using paper and aluminium in conjunction with loudspeakers to create resonating surfaces. Other experimental approaches include projecting video onto vibrating surfaces and building a pyrophone, which is an instrument played using fire. The outcome of Jan’s work will be presented in the Project Space in March. Our thanks to ACME studios for working with us on our first residency! The idea behind this approach would be to somehow use sound to expose the ‘invisible’ art that goes into presenting art works. The production facility itself is full of interesting sound and vibration. It will be interesting to use contact microphones on machinery and extraction units to create a soundscape that is the product of listening creatively to the sounds of the production process. These sounds might then be used to activate the prepared surfaces.’

Entry 1:

I am really excited to be working at John jones, having completed my first few visits. Everyone has been really helpful, and I'm starting to get some quite ambitious ideas for the project space. My next challenge is to assemble all the materials in the space and start testing them, which will happen at the beginning of next week. I'm hoping that the outcome will be part installation and part performance. My aim is to reveal the incredible soundscapes created by the materials and the production processes.
I have a had a couple of really interesting visits to the metalwork department where Paul has shown me some of the construction methods they use, and we have discussed building an aluminium pyrophone. This is an instrument played using fire, and which might be performed live in the project space. There are still lots of questions about how it will work and what the final design will be (not to mention the health and safety implications of using blowtorches in a performance). I have attracted some attention wandering around the site attaching contact microphones to bits of machinery, but the sounds are extraordinary. I hope to be uploading some of these to the website at some point, and will be keeping a blog of the project as it progresses.

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