IMPROVISATION AND TERRITORY
: a perspective on site-specific free improvisation
David Storey: Territory and Territorialities
Published online June 2013 | | DOI
This chapter lays down the conceptual structure for this research which is based on the migration of the concept of Territory from the realm of Geography to an interdisciplinary artistic practice between sound art, music, acoustic ecology, architecture and installation art, in its contemporary modalities and definitions.
In articulation with the concept of Acoustic Horizon and Acoustic Arena, I identify and define four Territorial Listening strategies: Micro, Macro, Multi and Non Territorial, and three strategies to the manipulate/explore the acoustic horizon: Drift, Fragmentation and Occupation.
Definition of metaphors based on reflections about the notion of Territory (i.e. bounded space where power is necessary to defend and define its limits) articulating them with the concept of acoustic horizon (listener = improvisor and audience) and acoustic arena (sound source = medusa and acoustical environment/soundscape_seen as an musical piece).
Debate and definition of Micro, Macro, Multi, (Nomadic??) or Non territorial Listening (which address the notion of territory from a perceptual point of view), which can be a structural perceptual approach to the performing free improvisor. (Ref: “Spaces Speak are you listening” pg. 22 Auditory Spatial Awareness)
“playing space with distance”
“These four Territorial modalities articulated with the acoustic horizon and arena (spatial auditory perception)”
“We live in a highly territorialized world, the most obvious manifestation of which is the political division of the earth into separate countries or states. However, this macroscale territorialization is accompanied by a myriad of much more microscale variants involving the staking of claims to geographic space, the “production” of territories, and the deployment of territorial strategies.
In everyday usage, territory is usually taken to refer to a portion of geographic space that is claimed or occupied by a person or group of persons or by an institution. In this way it can be seen as an area of “bounded space.” Following from this, the process whereby individuals or groups lay claim to such territory can be referred to as “territoriality.”
Territorial thinking, the production of territories, and the employment of territorial strategies are bound up with maintaining power or with resisting the imposition of power by a dominant group. Forms of exclusion can be consolidated and reinforced through territorial practices, yet they can also be resisted through similar means.
David Storey: Territory and Territorialities //
Read also: Haesbert, Souza, brasileiros georgrafos..
Henri Lefevbre “a produção do espaço” 1974
Mais recentemente, nas sociedades “de controle” ou “pós-modernas” vigora o controle da mobilidade, dos fluxos (redes) e, conseqüentemente, das conexões – o território passa então, gradativamente, de um território mais “zonal” ou de controle de áreas para um “território-rede” ou de controle de redes. Aí, o movimento ou a mobilidade passa a ser um elemento fundamental na construção do território.
Multi-territorialidade: …Para estes, o espaço enquanto distância parece importar muito pouco. Por outro lado, a acessibilidade geográfica ampliada de que dispõe a elite planetária não impede que ela tenha não só de se “proteger” em termos de espaço residencial como também de manter as conexões, físicas e/ou informacionais, entre os múltiplos territórios que, combinados, conformam a sua multiterritorialidade.
O território, como espaço dominado e/ou apropriado, manifesta hoje um sentido multi-escalar e multi-dimensional que só pode ser devidamente apreendido dentro de uma concepção de multiplicidade, de uma multiterritorialidade. E toda ação que efetivamente se pretenda transformadora, hoje, necessita, obrigatoriamente, encarar esta questão: ou se trabalha com a multiplicidade de nossos territórios, ou não se alcançará nenhuma mudança positivamente inovadora. Os movimentos anti- globalização e anti-neoliberalismo que o digam, zapatistas à frente. Pensar multiterritorialmente é a única perspectiva para construir uma outra sociedade, ao mesmo tempo mais universalmente igualitária e mais multiculturalmente reconhecedora das diferenças humanas
PAPER: “Multiplos territorios e Territorialidades” pg 5
“Territoriality is much more than a strategy to control space. It is better understood as implicating and being implicated in ways of thinking, acting, and being in the world – ways of world-making informed by beliefs, desires, culturally and historically contingent ways of knowing. It is much a metaphysical phenomenon as a material one.”
“As for territory,” writes Achille Mbembe,”It is fundamentally an intersection of moving bodies. It is defined by the set of mouvements that take place within it” pg 66
David Delaney, Short introduction to Territory. 2005
Border Theory pg 63
…pag 67 “the boundaries of the body become analogous to the borders of the nation and the nation-state; both are vulnerable to penetration and corruption from the outside, susceptible to disease and alien intrusion respectively” mbembe, A, 2000, “At the edge of the world: boundaries, territoriality and sovereignity in africa” public culture 12, 259-284
Liminal Spaces : …related to rituals. define this . Maybe important to conceptualize the concert period in Medusa. (the liminal period). Construction of the metaphor in relation to this concept. ?? her:Richard Schechner on Defining Liminal
“Today state territoriality is increasingly intertwined with and superimposed upon various emergents spatial forms… that cannot be described adequatly as contiguos, mutually exclusive, and self-enclosed blocks of space… (S)tate institutions are … being radically re-scaled at once upward, downward, and outward to create polymorphic layers of state territorial organization… Under these circumstances, the image of global social space as a complex mosaic of superimposed and interpenetrating nodes, levels, scales, and morphologies has become more appropriate than the traditional cartesian model of homogeneous, interlinked blocks of territory associated with the modern interstate system.” (Brenner, 1999)
HEARING AND LISTENING
In general, we may say that hearing is a sensitivity to both the detail of physical vibration within an environment and its physical orientation as revealed through its modification of those vibrations. The evolutionary development of the auditory system presumably occurred because such information contributed to the survival potential of the species.
On the other hand, our model of listening begins with the survival value implicit in the ability to interpret information about the environment and one’s interaction with it, based on the detail contained within those physical vibrations.
Acoustic Communication, second edition, Barry Truax 2001
Mapping a Territory through listening and marking a territory with sound.
Listening to the space that surrounds us is a constant human activity, and this is one of the sensitive faculties that we have in order to interpret it and to define our interaction with it. When listened, the physical vibrations to which we´re subjected acquire meaning and we dynamically picture the space around us and the activities that take place in it. The sounds when interpreted give us a lot of information about their sources and their impact is eminently territorial in the sense that they “occupy” space in a certain way defining the relation between the listeners and the sources (ex:)
The seemingly innocent trajectory of sound as it moves from its source and toward a listener, without forgetting all the surfaces, bodies, and other sounds it brushes against, is a story imparting a great deal of information fully charged with geographic, social, psychological, and emotional energy. My feeling is that an entire history and culture can be found within a single sound; from its source to its destination sound is generative of a diverse range of experiences, as well as remaining specifically tied to a given context, as a deeper expressive and prolonged figure of culture.
(…) it suggests the intensity and grace with which sound may create a relational space, a meeting point, diffuse and yet pointed; a private space that requires something between, an outside; a geography of intimacy that also incorporates the dynamics of interference, noise, transgression. From one body to the other, a thread is made that stitches the two together in a temporal instant, while remaining loose, slack, to unfurl back into the general humdrum of place. Sound might be heard to say, This is our moment.
(…) In the movement of sound, the making of an exchange is enacted; a place is generated by the temporality of the auditory. This is our moment is also immediately, This is our place. Auditory knowledge is a radical epistemological thrust that unfolds as a spatio-temporal event: sound opens up a field of interaction, to become a channel, a fluid, a flux of voice and urgency, of play and drama, of mutuality and sharing, to ultimately carve out a micro-geography of the moment, while always already disappearing, as a distributive and sensitive propagation.
(…) Detailing the micro-epistemologies and everyday terrains of auditory experience, I’ve come to hear sound as a movement that gives us each other, as both gift and threat, as generosity and agitation, as laughter and tears, marking listening as a highly provocative and relational sense.
Brandon Labelle / Acoustic Territories
Sobre a comunicação animal /
“Human beings are only one of many species that evolved a sense of territory based on the size of their acoustic arena. Marc D. Hauser (1997a), in his analysis of animal communications among numerous species, described the complexity and importance of vocal signaling in a shared acoustic environment. Broadcasting vocal signals in a complex environment, such as a forest, is one of the most effective means of communicating because the acoustic horizon can be far larger than the visual or olfactory horizon. Many species therefore evolved specialized auditory biology and social systems, adapting to their specific acoustic environment, to their acoustic geography—nature’s aural architecture.”
Books on animal communication
Author: Marc D. Hauser, Mark Konishi (Editors). Title: The Design of Animal Communication Published: M.I.T. Press, Cambridge, MA, 2000. ISBN: 0262082772
Author: Marc D. Hauser Title: The Evolution of Communication Published: M.I.T. Press, Cambridge, MA, 1997. ISBN: 0262581558
The sounds we produce are also a way of territorialization. We occupy space with sound and we hide ourselves by being silent. Sound and Territory are eminently connected and there are numerous examples that confirm this relation. (ref or ex)
Our body has audible extensions (“voices, noises, shouts, tips and taps” (b.Lb.. pg.69) and therefore our presence in space, our means of occupying space and defining our territory, is also sonic. The use of sound in public demonstrations where voices rise together chanting over the street noise level or the way a politician raises his voice in a rally. We usually determine the usage of this extension but sometimes this mechanism can be also used as means of control. Labelle describes the way Silence was used in Auburn prison to surveil the prisoners.
Silence in this regard functioned as an absolute form of surveillance, control, and isolation, to confine the criminal body not only behind walls but also within an entirely restrained environment. (b.Lb.. pg.69)
But we could also give has an example the way silence is an obligation on the audience´s side in a classical music concert. When Silence is a verb it becomes a way to control:
“o silêncio é o sítio onde se grita” Ary dos Santos // REDREV graphitty // bibliografia na pasta
But most of all, the way sound occupies space and defines a territory is dependent on its duration: it is volatile and invisible by nature. Sound produces always very temporary territories, due to its “momentary” nature. In order for a sound to resonate with the same power through a long period of time, the action that starts it needs to be repeated. Mechanical or digital (electroacoustic) sounds are an example. (shaffer//soundscape)
“Sound, as the result of a series of material frictions or vibrations, arises from a given object or body to propagate and leave behind the original source—it brings the original source from there to here. This movement grants the feeling of a progression; the temporality of sound, in vectorizing the image, does so by always leaving behind its origin to enliven sense of place with continual animation.”
Brandon Labelle on Michel Chion´s audio-visual theory
Martin Daughtry in the book “Listening to War” describes the Beliphonic soundscape and introduces extensive examples of the use and importance of sound in a war scenario, introducing new meanings for sound which derive from that particular context. (…)
When practicing an instrument at home, besides the inherent concentration on a direct and intimate relation of my body with the instrument (through the exercises), one is also normally aware of the sonic impact you´re producing in the neighbor´s houses. If the windows are opened your playing will be heard on the street at same time as the sounds from the outside soundscape intersect my playing, thus resulting in a complex sonic web including the cello sounds plus the noises from the street. This interpenetration of sonic territories (the musical practice and the street soundscape) can be more or less controlled and quarrelsome, both for the myself (musician) or the neighbors. From the perspective of the musician (and specially the improvisor) there are two ways of articulating this: you block your perception to the soundscape (and its sonic contents) and act with a perceptual indifference to them or you include it as part of playing; you play with it, manipulating and exploring its meanings through your playing. These imply different aesthetic and political perspectives to the performance of music. I´m specially interested in debating that the latter implies a type of awareness that will include performative procedures from free improvisation (*contextualised in the first chapter): specially in the listening discipline, the approach to the lack of control of the piece sonic contents (i.e. composition) and the specificities of one´s own musical vocabulary and syntax.
I´m interested in radicalizing and ritualizing this relation through a set of procedures.
Although maintaining a certain ubiquity Music keeps its specific territories with its specific “spaces” and associated “rituals”: the concert hall and the audio recording. …the way architecture (and its aural character) is also defining territories… who is listening to what and in which conditions… debate this… the political … is my listening mediated? Have I heard this instrument or this voice live or just through my cheap loudspeakers? Have I heard this on this or that space…?
Architectural spaces present also relevant conditions for soundwise territorial definition. In “spaces speak are you listening?” Blesser and Salter guide us through the importance that the spatial acoustic design have on conditioning or expanding its sonic contents.
The echo brings back the original event, though, reshaped or refigured, thereby returning sound and rendering it a spatial object: the echo turns sound into sculpture, making material and dimensional its reverberating presence. In this regard, the echo contradicts sound’s temporal behavior. Making sound into an object, the echo displaces the linear relation of origin and horizon, past and future, by prolonging the sound event to a point where it takes over; it overwhelms by turning the time of sound into a spatial dimension— the echo moves into space to replace it with its own compounded and repeating energy.
Brandon Labelle : Acoustic territories
On the extremes of these acoustic spaces one finds the anechoic and the echoic. The former reveals the sound source´s interiority, the original sound, and the latter the conditions for it´s extreme propagation in space towards the horizon. They are the anechoic chamber and the resonant, echoic cavern. One that is precise in location and where you listen to sonic minimalities?? exploring structural resonances, and the other which confuses the location of the original source, and relocates the source in a kind of specular movement of “infinite” sonic mirrors, where the echo of a sound becomes a sort of “other”, multiplying itself until the horizon (i.e. silence).
The horizon of the echo is folded back to support the making of another spatial dimension—a loop verging on feedback and repeating sound’s initial acoustical force.
Brandon Labelle : Acoustic territories
to the tensions of so many underground experiences, of the disorienting echo,
Brandon Labelle : Acoustic territories
This ontology of the echo, as I’m suggesting, partially makes unintelligible the original sound. In this way, it operates as an acousmatic event that has the particular effect of “decentering” focus. This effect of decentering as I’m drawing out here is also found in Chion’s examination of film sound. As a sound effect, decentering shifts the focus away from the text, the dialogue, and toward the mise-en-scène. In doing so, it creates something “decidedly poly- phonic,” to ultimately give “the feeling that the world is not reduced to the function of embodying dialogue.”47 Decentering fragments the commanding energy of the text, as a galvanizing and determining focus, to bring forward an entire scene. Such an effect begins to describe the resounding splintering enacted by the echo. Decenter- ing, origin and horizon enfolded, a bifurcation leading to biodiversity, the echoic recasts the single voice into haunting duplication.
the Polish fighters came to occupy the mesmerizing conditions of the echoic—to inhabit the multiplication of perspectives so as to multiply their chances for survival. In turn, German troops attempted to track the resistance below ground by also tuning into the echoes and reverberations that passed through the tunnels, and which might come to reveal the movements of underground organization.48
Brandon Labelle : Acoustic territories
falta: Steven Handel’s Listening
In our sensory system hearing is one of the senses that best informs an omnidirectional interpretation of space. This feature is accompanied by auditory selection mechanisms that give us the ability to focus on particular sound events, even in very dense and dynamic soundscapes.
Our sensitivity to this range of possible sound intensities is constantly changing, somewhat similarly to how the eye adjusts itself by changing the size of the iris to accommodate variable light levels. In the auditory system, the changes are called threshold shifts, which refer to an increase or decrease in the lowest sound level (or threshold)
Acoustic communication, second edition, Barry Truax 2001
Bernie Krause: BIOACOUSTICS / https://www.ted.com/talks/bernie_krause_the_voice_of_the_natural_world?language=pt#t-246642
The Acoustic Horizon is a concept that appears associated to the studies of Soundscapes, and that defines the limits of a territory by listening to its acoustic sounds more distant. It determines, in a way, the relation between the subject and the surrounding space by the attention to the outer limits of a sound geography in a specific space and time. The extent and profile of the Acoustic Horizon depends on the interaction of the sound sources with the topography of the surrounding space, being as dynamic as: the number of sources that are active, the character of its attributes (intensity, duration, pitch, pitch and position) and the listening abilities and listening discipline of the subject who wants to interpret it.
Psychoacoustics: Masking experiments, for instance, determine the conditions under which one sound, by virtue of its intensity or frequency content, makes it difficult or impossible to hear another sound.
Listening: listening can be consciously controlled. It can also produce categories of perceptual immediacy such as ‘‘background” and “foreground,” which do not necessarily correspond to physical distance; that is, a distant sound may seem more prominent in an environment than a closer one.
Acoustic communication, second edition, Barry Truax 2001
If sound generally occurs through displacement, moving from a point in time to another, the echo renders this to such degree as to make concrete the vectorizing, temporality of sound—the echo exaggerates the passing of sound, staging it as a performance. The echo literally continues the vector of sound, staggers it, and supple- ments it with a further set of sound events that ultimately fill a given space. The echo brings back the original event, though, reshaped or refigured, thereby returning sound and rendering it a spatial object: the echo turns sound into sculpture, making material and dimensional its reverberating presence. In this regard, the echo contradicts sound’s temporal behavior. Making sound into an object, the echo displaces the linear relation of origin and horizon, past and future, by prolonging the sound event to a point where it takes over; it overwhelms by turning the time of sound into a spatial dimension— the echo moves into space to replace it with its own compounded and repeating energy.
Brandon Labelle on ECHO pg. 7
Silence is a perceptual impossibility but one that can be imagined. In the same way that the visual horizon is associated with an impression of infinity, in the case of the acoustic horizon we could say that it is the silence that corresponds to this impression. As this horizon is defined by the “greatest distance in each direction from which sounds can be heard,” we can say that beyond this limit there is silence: an imagined silence.We can even broaden the definition of Acoustic Horizon by saying that this is the boundary with silence, where and when things in motion are silent, becoming mute because they are deaf to them. Silence exists only if imagined on this horizon because its experience is an impossibility. previously masked or for which we were not attentive.The experience of staying in an anechoic chamber is a good example of a test of the perceptual impossibility of silence and revealing the extension to the concept of Acoustic Horizon.Even if inside we are isolated from external noises, immobilized in an open field simulation, other sounds will come to occupy our listening (2). the inversion of the acoustic horizon. The absence of external noises and, in this case, the almost total absorption of room reflections, give us the opportunity to hear the sounds produced within our body. This architectural device provides a way of acoustically magnifying (without electric amplification) these very soft, inner sounds or at the threshold of audibility. Propagating not by air but by flesh and bones, these micro-sounds are in this context perceived as extremely intense sonic manifestations. This provides a similar experience, in its conceptual and perceptual structure, to the immersive quality of an exterior sound landscape. The body becomes understood as a micro-territory that can be interpreted sonically.
Maybe these two could be joined “ACOUSTIC HORIZON, MICRO AND MACRO TERRITORY”???
Between macro and micro territory: the echoic and anechoic
We are then in the presence of two extremes of the acoustic horizon: that of the macro-territory that depends on the auditory capacities of those who interpret the exterior soundscape and the spatial conditions that expand sound traveling (the echoic), and that of the micro-territory that comprises/which includes the very small sound manifestations inside the body and which is potentiated by the anechoic.
One which is traced when focusing the hearing on distant sound sources and mostly those traveling through air (air sound) and another explored with close listening, mainly by structural vibration (where the auditory system is excited mainly by the resonances of our body).
The micro-territory is also that of private domain, associated with interiority: metaphorically the Home where the acoustic horizon and acoustic arena (read acoustic territories Brandon Labelle) are limited by the house walls and coincident with them. It is a more controlled environment.
The macro-territory, although equally controlled, is that of a public domain, of exteriority: metaphorically The Ágora, the Plaza… where communal life takes place. Where the acoustic horizon is farthest and more unstable and where the acoustic arenas may collapse and interfere in a more substancial way.
In the book Acoustic Territories B.Labelle quotes Vito Acconci´s installation Talking House as an example of an artistic practice which transgresses the “middle class urban planning approach”:
“Prying open the enclosed sphere of the suburban home, Vito Acconci’s project Talking House (1996) relocates the private onto the street. Placing a series of microphones throughout a home located in Santa Barbara, California (for the “Home Show II” exhibition organized by the Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum), Talking House provides a sudden glimpse onto the average conditions of home life found in this idyllic neighborhood. Walking past the house one could hear conversations taking place in the kitchen, or residents brushing their teeth preparing for bed, or the still quiet of an empty home. Amplified through speakers set in the front yard, Acconci makes the home come to life, letting all that usually remains within to spill out: “Talk within the privacy of one’s own home goes, now, away from home. The walls don’t have to have ears: it’s as if the walls burst open, as if the house bursts with talk, as if the house blows up and talk blows out of the house.”22 Bursting out, Talking House is a splayed interior, laying its content on the front lawn for all the neighbors to hear. In this way, the work provides a key transgression and alteration of the very notion of home: if the domestic is predomi- nantly governed by an image of interiority, a cultivation of the private individual or family, Talking House literally gives voice to the desire to hear what shouldn’t be heard—and in doing so, to undo the domestic image. Turning it up, bursting the seams with amplification, home media comes to not only bring the outside in, through televis- ual and medial input, but to also force the inside out. Acconci queries the domestic by inserting microphones deep into its spaces (…)”
pg. 63/64 B-Labelle “Acoustic Territories”
“The poetical plenitude of Bachelard’s domestic visions, that house of daydreaming, must be heard to also carry within them repressed struggles that make the home a site for teenage angst, domestic violence, and sleepless nights. “
reference to Listening to War
contrarios…exemplo dos carris ou vibrações estruturais: pontes
Now as Gadamer uses the the metaphor of the horizon is that it is supposed to understand what it is for two people to understand something. He wants to say that x understands y when there is a “fusion of horizons” and I take it that he means something like x is able to see the same thing, or some of the same things that y does. Suppose x and y were both hikers going to see Mt. Blanc. x approaches from the east and y approaches from the west. both of them see a different profile of the mountain and if they were to try to describe what Mt Blanc looks like to one another they would be talking past one another. They wouldn’t be able to recognize the different descriptions they give as descriptions of the same mountain. They are only able to come to this recognition when they are standing sufficiently close together to be able to recognize that what they’re talking about is in fact the same thing. That is a “fusion of horizons”–x and y can recognize they are each speaking from their own perspectives, but about the same subject matter.
An exercise of territorial/spatial listening, taken at the same place and time by different people, based on the idea of drifting between these two extremes of the acoustic horizon will be quite subjective as each listener will have differentiated capacities and will recognize the sound events with a certainly different itinerary, attributing them different attention and value. However, if this strategy of listening is conducted in a similar way in the same arena, we will share an experience of that territory, in many points, common. ????We´re creating a temporary acoustic community (Truax 1978)_REVER!!which is recognizing a temporary acoustic territory, and temporarily appropriating it symbolically.*?? One which frontiers are not fixed and “whose spatial-temporal reality is very different from the apparent rigidity of state frontiers” (Souza, 2009, p.67 in geografia narrada com/de…conceito de território)
* Território, assim, em qualquer acepção, tem a ver com poder, mas não apenas ao tradicional “poder político”. Ele diz respeito tanto ao poder no sentido mais concreto, de dominação, quanto ao poder no sentido mais simbólico, de apropriação. Lefebvre distingue apropriação de dominação (“possessão”, “propriedade”), o primeiro sendo um
processo muito mais simbólico, carregado das marcas do “vivido”, do valor de uso, o segundo mais concreto, funcional e vinculado ao valor de troca. Segundo o autor:
O uso reaparece em acentuado conflito com a troca no espaço, pois ele implica “apropriação” e não “propriedade”. Ora, a própria apropriação implica tempo e tempos, um ritmo ou ritmos, símbolos e uma prática. Tanto mais o espaço é funcionalizado, tanto mais ele é dominado pelos “agentes” que o manipulam tornando-o unifuncional, menos ele se presta à apropriação. Por quê? Porque ele se coloca fora do tempo vivido, aquele dos usuários, tempo diverso e complexo. (Lefebvre, 1986:411-412, grifo do autor)
No artigo “A picturesque stroll around Clara-Clara”, publicado na revista October em 1984, Yves-Alain Bois analisa a obra Clara-Clara (1983) de Richard Serra instalada no jardim das Tulherias em Paris. O argumento central do artigo é criado a partir da ideia de passeio pitoresco em torno de uma dúvida de Serra sobre o que Robert Smithson disse de Shift (1971-72), “… [Smithson] falou da sua essência pitoresca, e eu não tenho a certeza do que falava.” Bois explica então que Smithson não se referia à definição comum de pitoresco como equivalente a pictórico ou pictural, mas à filosofia do pitoresco que presume um percurso num espaço mais vasto.
Smithson foi inspirado pelos filósofos do pitoresco que, no século XVIII em Inglaterra, pensaram no acto de caminhar, na paisagem ou em jardins desenhados para mimetizar o carácter caótico natureza. Richard Payne Knight, foi um desses filósofos que se interessava pelas sensações e pelo poder associativo dos espaços do jardim pitoresco. Este seria um espaço onde, através da caminhada e do movimento, o sujeito descobria vários elementos paisagísticos e arquitectónicos que sugeriam imagens evocativas de mitos ou poemas. Um passeio pitoresco também podia ser feito em áreas rurais que muitas vezes incluíam elementos reais, como pequenas casas de uma pobreza esquálida, que no entanto satisfaziam o prazer intelectual e estético dos viajantes; o que mais tarde foi caracterizado por John Ruskin como “… a crueldade do pitoresco.”
POÉTICAS DA PAISAGEM: DO SUBLIME AO PITORESCO NO MOVIMENTO LAND ART
Sued Ferreira da Silva1 Luciana Saboia Fonseca Cruz2 Ana Elizabete Medeiros3
This paper proposes an investigation into the convergences between artistic practice and landscape. It has as case study the creative process of Land Art movement and its aesthetic experience in the light of contemporary reinterpretations of sublime and picturesque. The Land Art movement emerged in the 60s, motivated by ecological discourse, and it aims to rescue the reintegration of man in nature through art, using as a support the landscape, the territory, the waste from urbanization and industrialization. The exit of museums and galleries legitimation spaces to the external environment becomes a critique of art commercialization, which takes shape when a dialogue with the landscape is established, making use of its materiality, specificity and intrinsic temporariness. It comes to expand the problematizations about its apprehension and historical transformations, as well as the possibilities of aesthetic experience, which incorporates the artwork process, since the choice of site to the production of narratives, travel journals, photographs, films and other different records.
Keywords: landscape; design theory; sublime; picturesque; Land Art.
ECSTATIC LISTENING AND THE NON-TERRITORY/DETERRITORIALIZATION?????? see pag. 63 Territory: short introduction
Ek-Stasis, from the Ancient Greek, means “to put out of place”. (…) Francesco Borromini and Balthasar Neumann dematerialized matter by mixing forms, crossing shapes, and exploding them with light. This created disorientation, a confusion of the senses, which is essential to Ek-Stasis and, inevitably upsetting to normal Protestant Rationalists (…)w
Charles Jencks: Ecstatic Architecture 1999
Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one’s attention to experiences occurring in the present moment, which can be developed through the practice of meditation and other training. The term “mindfulness” is a translation of the Pali term sati, which is a significant element of Buddhist traditions. In Buddhist teachings, mindfulness is utilized to develop self-knowledge and wisdom that gradually lead to what is described as enlightenment or the complete freedom from suffering. The recent popularity of mindfulness in the West is generally considered to have been initiated by Jon Kabat-Zinn.
“In line with the sport psychology studies, Csikszentmihalyi’s (1975, 1979, 1990) conceptualization of flow has inspired the field with continued interest in looking into facilitating factors that can contribute to an enhancement of performance. Flow refers to those experiences in which you become so indulged in an activity that you lose awareness of everything else around you. You feel “in the zone,” and time flies. The activity itself becomes a reward in and of itself. Csikszentmihalyi’s model of flow, which was earlier called autotelic experiences, originated from his interviews with many people who experienced a full engagement in their activities, such as rock climbers and chess players.”
Peak Performance: Langerian Mindfulness and Flow // from I – INTRODUCTION TO MINDFULNESS: HISTORY AND THEORETICAL UNDERSTANDING // By Sayyed Mohsen Fatemi, Harvard University, U.S.A., Elizabeth D. Ward, Harvard University, U.S.A., Ellen J. Langer, Harvard University, U.S.A. // Edited by Amy L. Baltzell, Boston University // Publisher: Cambridge University Press // https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139871310.006 // pp 101-111
“Once the IZOF (Individualized Optimal Zone of Functioning) is identified, through self-reflection and retrospection, sport psychologists prompt and guide athletes to re-create such personally ideal states, reflecting individualized combinations of emotions, through the use of mental skills such as using imagery scripts, listening to selected music to evoke a particular emotional response, or implementing self-talk (intrapersonal) cues to prompt the predetermined emotional patterns. Though such approaches are considered efficacious, it is possible that a focus on what is fresh and new could help some performers perform even better than re-creating past ideal mental, emotional states.”
“Di Leo’s call for adaptation is key to his approach.”
how does a well-learned task capture the full attention of the individual, to stretch their capacity to such an extent that it triggers a flow state? Langerian mindfulness may just be the answer. The athlete engaged in a well-learned task must be willing to engage with the environment, con- stantly being willing and interested in making very small adjustments as their moment-to-moment skills and abilities interact with subtle differ- ences in their environment. If all is held as possibly different and unex- pected, the athlete then could be more open to nuances perhaps requisite for moment-to-moment optimal experience and performance.
chapter 15 “Langerian Mindfulness and Optimal Performance” Amy L. Baltzell, Trevor A. Cote
Ying and Chiat (2013) introduced tai chi principles of flow qi to piano students with the goal of increasing the probability of the students attaining flow state, to become the action (versus to try to create the music). This is similar to the paradox of control identified as a characteristic of flow, where the performer feels in control without trying to be in control (Jackson & Csikszentmihalyi, 1999). Ying and Chiat’s (2013) qi flow training intervention included focused breathing work aligned with muscular contraction (exhaling) and release (inhaling).
COre to Ying and Chiat´s (2013) stance is that “the performer may need to shift from the Western cultural norms of prioritizing control to the Eastern way of ‘letting go,’ where awareness and openness are the main concepts” (p. 100). Langerian mindful- ness is a Western approach that supports this notion of letting go (an automatic way of interacting with the environment) such that the performer can remain aware and open to novelty within the performance realm.
When practicing very concentrated listening (describe) it is common to experience a feeling of displacement. An experience of just being “in the sound”, with the sensation of total communion with the sonic matter and loosing the notion of spatial distances and territorial definition. This is common both with music or soundscape. It is achieved by concentrated listening but also by being in the presence of repetitive sounds…The body is “taken by the sound”, and there is a sensation of “loosing one´s weight”, “floating” or “diving in the sound”, “abandonment”, “transcendence”. A number of liquid, osmotic or spiritual metaphors may place us closer to the sensation.
Ecstasy occurs through an extreme sensualism: a supersensualism as “the quality of being above or beyond what is perceptible to the senses” made possible by an “unusual degree of sensualism”. (Oxford Dictionary).
The previously described listening drift, in between the macro and micro territory, is temporarily obliterated by the subjective experience of total involvement with a specific sonic object, with the pleasure of focusing on it, of totally identifying with it, with loosing the distance from it, of “being” it.
This Non-territory becomes an expression of freedom. No boundaries. No limits….
Robert Anton Wilson: “It is simply the experience of total ecstasy, usually involving a paradoxical sensation that the whole universe is actually your own body” p23 Ecstatic Architecture
Something similar to Freud´s “oceanic feeling”: the return to the primitive ego-feeling which precedes the creation of the Ego. Where the notion of Other still doesn´t exist.
Or Japanese Budhist “Satori”: awakening.
Charles Jencks says when referring to the works of some of the well known “Deconstructivists architects” of the 90´s: “How can one experience the pleasure of such things without abandonment? If the explosion of space and light is meant to be overwhelming, it is hard, or even pointless, to try to hold on to the usual anchors of orientation, the Cartesian grid.” He then follows: “That would be like walking in outer space expecting gravity ti apply – pg 12
SHOULD I RELATE THIS TO MUSIC? IN THE SENSE THAT IT IS NOT SOUND, BUT INTERPRETED AS MUSICAL MATERIALS ??
see Musical Materials, Perception, and Listening
At the same time, from the listener´s (performer and audience) perspective, it is common to experience a feeling of complete displacement, both in music concerts or when practicing static concentrated listening. An experience of being “in the sound”, with the sensation of total communion with the sonic matter. A number of descriptions (ex?) refer to loosing one´s weight, of floating or diving in the sound. Sound as territory defining Ecstatic experiences are achieved when listening to music, both by performers or audiences. Usually they are experienced in repetitive music and usually including one´s body through dance. ??
The Dervishes rituals are a proof of this ecstatic state induced by meditative sufi music and dance: See improvisation in sufi music.
The Ecstatic Music of Alice coltrane
Ecstasy (from Ancient Greek ἔκστασις ékstasis) is a subjective experience of total involvement of the subject, with an object of his or her awareness. In classical Greek literature it refers to removal of the mind or body “from its normal place of function.” Total involvement with an object of interest is not an ordinary experience because of being aware of other objects, thus ecstasy is an example of an altered state of consciousness characterized by diminished awareness of other objects or the total lack of the awareness of surroundings and everything around the object. The word is also used to refer to any heightened state of consciousness or intensely pleasant experience. It is also used more specifically to denote states of awareness of non-ordinary mental spaces, which may be perceived as spiritual (the latter type of ecstasy often takes the form of religious ecstasy).
Are these states incompatible with a listening which includes a spatial experience of all the sonic events in a determined moment and place? Or is it a possibility for extending further the experience of the acoustic horizon. This extension could be referenced as a negative territory, the horizon of which is a complete dissolution of the body in space and time. A listening that seizes to be experienced as such, separate from other senses, but as an emotional state where the body looses its boundaries and seems to disappear. Where the social architecture of music looses its meaning, where listener and performer are sound.
ref: Music, The Brain, And Ecstasy: How Music Captures Our Imagination Paperback – April 1, 2008 / by Robert Jourdain
The notion of acoustic horizon (the farthest distance from which a sound may be heard) and, by direct relation, that of acoustic arena (the farthest distance to which a sound may be projected) are useful to rationalize acoustic communication. Both concepts (which are interdependent: one addresses the listener and the other the source) may structure the relation between sound and territory, a musical ritual and space or the relation between sound source and receiver (social and biological). Yet, in their conceptual architecture, they do not include other dimensions of the sonic relations between bodies and bodies and space. Opening the notion of acoustic Horizon to a metaphorical status one may start extending the object of the concept: the horizon itself. What is this horizon? Where is it? By definition silence is there for sure, because that´s where the sound “dies”. Where vibrational energy?? dissipates. But what about the experience of total displacement through music? Isn´t it another dimension of the horizon or another horizon?
Space disappears in ecstatic musical experiences. Could we relate this to silence? Could silence be the result of this experience in the sense that hearing disappears as a discrete sensation and Listening is no longer the “ability to interpret information about the environment and one’s interaction with it” but seizes to be conceptualized as such inasmuch the senses become undifferentiated and meaning is substituted by an emotion??? Silence is/would be the impossible limit of these three instances of the acoustic territory
Multiterritorial listening and multiple horizons (and nomadic thinking?)
A principal novidade é que hoje temos uma diversidade ou um conjunto de opções muito maior de territórios/territorialidades com os/as quais podemos “jogar”, uma velocidade (ou facilidade, via Internet, por exemplo) muito maior (e mais múltipla) de acesso e trânsito por essas territorialidades – elas próprias muito mais instáveis e móveis – e, dependendo de nossa condição social, também muito mais opções para desfazer e refazer constantemente essa multiterritorialidade. (p. 344)
PAPER: “Multiplos territorios e Territorialidades” pg 16
The acoustic horizon is a concept which is mainly operative in the realm of acoustic sounds. Although this makes sense it is also true that in today´s globalized societies the use of “trans-geographic” digital media and digital networks made way for an extension of this notion. We´ve discussed other extensions (perceptual and metaphoric) of this concept and it is important to extend it further to include a mode of listening which includes the “real time” experience of listening simultaneily to sounds from different geographic locations while in immobility or moving in a specific geographic location. It envolves a spatial-time compression…
– os agentes que promovem a multiterritorialização e as profundas distinções em termos de objetivos, estratégias e escalas, sejam eles indivíduos, grupos, instituições, o Estado ou as empresas.
– o caráter mais simbólico ou mais funcional da multiterritorialidade – tal como no território, ela aparece ora com uma maior carga simbólica (como no caso das grandes diásporas de imigrantes), ora mais funcional (como no caso das redes do megaterrorismo global); no primeiro caso é importante analisar também as múltiplas identidades territoriais nela envolvidas.
– os níveis de compressão espaço-tempo (e, conseqüentemente, de “tele-ação”) nela incorporados, ou seja, as múltiplas “geometrias de poder” da compressão espaço- tempo, bem como o caráter potencial ou efetivo de sua execução.
– o caráter contínuo ou descontínuo da multiterritorialidade, até que ponto ela ocorre pela superposição, num mesmo espaço, de múltiplos territórios, ou até que ponto ela corresponde à conexão de múltiplos territórios, em rede (distinguindo então, tal como na distinção entre territórios-zona e territórios-rede, uma multiterritorialidade em sentido lato ou “zonal” e uma multiterritorialidade em sentido estrito ou “reticular”).
– a combinação de “tempos espaciais” incorporada à multiterritorialidade – podendo existir assim, de certa forma, uma multiterritorialidade também no sentido das múltiplas territorialidades acumuladas desigualmente ao longo do tempo (Santos, 1978)4.
This is the idea of exploring the territory-network along with the territory-zone.
A realização da multiterritorialidade contemporânea, fica evidente, envolve como condições básicas a presença de uma grande multiplicidade de territórios e sua articulação na forma de territórios-rede.
Ex: testes com Matriz e com Medusa trienal
Falar não simplesmente em desterritorialização mas em multiterritorialidade e territórios-rede, moldados no e pelo movimento, implica reconhecer a importância estratégica do espaço e do território na dinâmica transformadora da sociedade. Inspiramo-nos aqui no “sentido global de lugar” proposto por Doreen Massey (2000). Criticando as visões mais reacionárias que vêem o lugar apenas como um espaço estável, de fronteiras bem delimitadas e identidades fixas, um pouco como nos territórios-zona aqui comentados, a autora propõe uma visão “progressista” de lugar, “não fechado e defensivo”, voltado para fora e adaptado a nossa era de compressão de tempo-espaço.
Numa visão mais tradicional, o lugar, como o território e o próprio espaço, era associado à homogeneidade, ao imobilismo e à reação, frente à multiplicidade, ao movimento e ao progresso ligados ao “tempo”. Uma consciência global do lugar, defendida por Massey, embora não possa ser vista como boa ou má em si mesma, é a evidência de que hoje não temos mais espaços fechados e identidades homogêneas e “autênticas”. Nossas vidas estão impregnadas com influências provenientes de inúmeros outros espaços e escalas. A própria “singularidade” dos lugares (e dos territórios) advém sobretudo de uma específica combinação de influências diversas, que podem ser provenientes das mais diversas partes do mundo.
These definitions establish a cartography for improvisation supported by the Acoustic Horizon metaphor. The three of them propose a different (listening) horizon and therefore a different approach to silence, which is here proposed as a synonymous of the acoustic horizon. The exploration of these horizons (i.e. the sonic limits of the micro, the macro and the negative territories) is an operative metaphor to establish a strong relation between music and space. More specifically it proposes a particular map for improvisation. It establishes a territorial metaphor for developing an improvisation.
It is important to refer that these are not seen as stages, although we can articulate them in this way. We use them as a proto structure of a solo free improvisation
or CHOICE-composition (define) for a solo improvisation procedure.
If both the act of Listening and Performance Setup are oriented towards this territorial interpretation of solo playing act, it is relevant to layout active strategies to “navigate”/explore them.
IMPROVISATION AS MANIPULATION OF THE ACOUSTIC HORIZON
If the act of listening is oriented by these territorial modalities then it is important to debate the following three concepts as they will appear as active strategies of territorialization in this research. Therefore his text will also articulate my specific sonic-architecural production with these territorial modalities.
1. Drift (Nomadism) (Dynamic and fluid listening / include also the notions of sound walk / static and moving drift),
2. Fragmentation (division and atomization of the territory as a strategy to question fluidity??. Fragmentation always implies an Other, separation, division. Division implies control of limits. It is also a property of ruins and invisibility.)
3. Occupation (how sounds occupy our sonic space and interfere or modulate our territorial interpretation /// durational occupation of foreign territories / emigration of sound: recorded and real time streamed sound) // transubstanciação)
* I want to clarify that listening is not passive, in the performer´s perspective, but rather active in the definition of the musical flux.
Include examples both from music (for solo instruments), sound art, architecture and installation where these strategies can be identified, and debate how they have informed the research.
Invading/Occupying, fragmenting and drifting:
my perspective on solo improvisation vocabulary dramaturgy and the way it articulates with the definitions proposed above. The way this relations also include the need for site-specific installation setups and how this is articulated with the nomad character of the instrument. Debate within these active strategies:
Examples included in this section should relate to the practices of free improvisation and site-sensitive_specific art discussed in the first chapter or examples of works where these strategies are identifiable and inform in some way the research.
Drift: Dynamic and fluid listening / nomadism. Exploration of strategies which allowed for
:to become driven or carried along (as by a current of water, wind, or air)
:to move or float smoothly and effortlessly
: to move along a line of least resistance
:to move in a random or casual way
:to become carried along subject to no guidance or control
:to vary or deviate from a set course or adjustment
The following text is taken from ‘The most radical gesture: The Situationist International in a postmodern age’ by Sadie Plant and published by Routledge. Read it, and live without dead time.
…The situationists’ desire to become psychogeographers, with an understanding of the ‘precise laws and specific effects of the geographical environment, consciously organized or not, on the emotions and behaviour of individuals’, was intended to cultivate an awareness of the ways in which everyday life is presently conditioned and controlled, the ways in which this manipulation can be exposed and subverted, and the possibilities for chosen forms of constructed situations in the post-spectacular world. Only an awareness of the influences of the existing environment can encourage the critique of the present conditions of daily life, and yet it is precisely this concern with the environment which we live which is ignored.
“The sudden change of ambiance in a street within the space of a few meters; the evident division of a city into zones of distinct psychic atmospheres; the path of least resistance which is automatically followed in aimless strolls (and which has no relation to the physical contour of the ground); the appealing or repelling character of certain places – all this seems to be neglected.”
Guy Debord, ‘ Introduction to a Critique of Urban Geography
Concealed by the functional drudgery of city life, such areas of psychogeographical research were seen as the ground of a new realm of experiment with the possibilities of everyday experience.
One of psychogeography’s principle means was the dérive. Long a favorite practice of the dadaists, who organized a variety of expeditions, and the surrealists, for whom the geographical form of automatism was an instructive pleasure, the dérive, or drift, was defined by the situationists as the ‘technique of locomotion without a goal’, in which ‘one or more persons during a certain period drop their usual motives for movement and action, their relations, their work and leisure activities, and let themselves be drawn by the attractions of the terrain and the encounters they find there’. The dérive acted as something of a model for the ‘playful creation’ of all human relationships.
Unlike surrealist automatism, the dérive was not a matter of surrendering to the dictates of an unconscious mind or irrational force. Indeed, the situationists’ criticisms of surrealism concluded that ‘the unconscious imagination is poor, that automatic writing is monotonous, that the whole genre of ostentatious surrealist “weirdness” has ceased to be very surprising’. Nor was everything subordinated to the sovereignty of choice: to dérive was to notice the way in which certain areas, streets, or buildings resonate with states of mind, inclinations, and desires, and to seek out reasons for movement other than those for which an environment was designed. It was very much a matter of using an environment for one’s own ends, seeking not only the marvelous beloved by surrealism but bringing an inverted perspective to bear on the entirety of the spectacular world. Potlatch carried a lovely example of this inversion of priorities in the form of a letter addressed to The Times protesting against the redevelopment of London’s Chinese quarter. After a defense of the area itself, the letter ends:
“Anyway, it is inconvenient that this Chinese quarter of London should be destroyed before we have the opportunity to visit it and carry out certain psychogeographical experiments we are at present undertaking… if modernization appears to you, as it does to us, to be historically necessary, we would counsel you to carry your enthusiasm into areas more urgently in need of it, that is to say, your political and moral institutions.”
…the situationists developed an armoury of confusing weapons intended constantly to provoke critical notice of the totality of lived experience and reverse the stultifying passivity of the spectacle. ‘Life can never be too disorientating,’ wrote Debord and Wolman, in support of which they described a friend’s experience wandering ‘through the Harz region of Germany while blindly following the directions of a map of London.’
Such disorientation was not craved for its own sake. But as a means of showing the concealed potential of experimentation, pleasure, and play in everyday life, the situationists considered a little chaos to be a valuable means to exposing the way in which the experiences made possible by capitalist production could be appropriated within a new enabling system of social relations.
C.Small “musicking chapter pg 2015 / “And of course, because there is no fixed written record of those songs any more than there is of the people’s history, and because people’s memories are fallible, even those songs which are supposed to be fixed are subject to constant drift.”
Fragmentation: discontinuity /// division of territory as a strategy to explore fluidity or question the clarity of territorial boundaries. Of The territory Zone_the Zonal Territory. Fragmentation always implies an Other, separation, division. It is also a property of ruins and invisibility of the whole.
A chamada condição pós-moderna inclui assim uma multiterritorialidade:
(…) resultante do domínio de um novo tipo de território, o território-rede em sentido estrito (…). Aqui, a perspectiva euclidiana de um espaço-superfície contínuo praticamente sucumbe à descontinuidade, à fragmentação e à simultaneidade de territórios que não podemos mais distinguir claramente onde começam e onde terminam ou, ainda, onde irão “eclodir”, pois formações rizomáticas também são possíveis. (…) (Haesbaert, 2004 :348)
Colonization / Occupation of foreign territories / migration of sound / transfiguration of the sonic character?? the action or process of settling among and establishing control over the indigenous people of an area. The action of appropriating a place or domain for one’s own use.
Ecology: the action by a plant or animal of establishing itself in an area.
Solo improvisation and territorial listening/thinking
So between the herdsman and his flute there already exists a complex set of relationships before he ever uses it to make a note of music. Like all mu- sical instruments it does not exist in a social vacuum, but in its design and making, its tuning and sound quality, it is a product of the society of which he is a member. It represents in tangible form the society’s technology and its ways of thinking and especiallyits concepts of human relationships.
C. Small “musicking” pg 202
“As he plays, the flutist is bringing into existence a sonic space that is de- fined by the limit of audibility of his flute in each direction, upward to- ward the skies as well as outward on the earth around him, into which he is projecting himself. It is his own sonic territory, in which his ideas of rela- tionships are valid. And because how we relate is who we are, he is in effect saying, to himself and to anyone who may be listening, Here I am, and this is who I am. Who that “I” is, is complex and even multiple, endlessly devel- oping and unfolding, as are the sonic relationships that the lone herdsman, with no one but himself to hear, is creating in the night. “
C. Small “musicking” pg 206
An autotelic person needs few material possessions and little entertainment, comfort, power, or fame because so much of what he or she does is already rewarding. Because such persons experience flow in work, in family life, when interacting with people, when eating, even when alone with nothing to do, they are less dependent on the external rewards that keep others motivated to go on with a life composed of routines. They are more autonomous and independent because they cannot be as easily manipulated with threats or rewards from the outside. At the same time, they are more involved with everything around them because they are fully immersed in the current of life. wikistuff
In a free solo improvisation I present myself with the cello and the space around, including the audience, the acoustic character of the architecture and possible eccentric sound sources. Dialogue among musicians, which is often the driving force behind free improvisations, is now absent. A soliloquy occurs: the musician develops his sonic flow alone. (3) I am interested in articulating this improvisation flow with a dynamic territorial listening which includes the three instances/categories described before:
macro-territory: listening to the aural architecture and the soundscape, and exploring in the music flow the perceptual awakening of these dimensions of the sonic space. It´s acoustic horizon (limit_frontier) is the farthest distance from which a sound may be heard.
micro-territory /// nano-territory: listening to the inner sonic depths of the sound producing subject and its “body”. In this case the fetishistic identification of performer with instrument (any object, idea, etc., eliciting unquestioning reverence, respect, or devotion ) is crucial to understand this definition, as they are “experienced” as one. It´s acoustic horizon (limit_frontier) is the “solvence” of this performative formation of player-instrument. is the softest sound one has the ability to hear inside the sound-producing body.* (ler a definição coisificada)
negative-territory / Deterritorialization??: the ecstatic experience of music establishes an altered perception of space and time and the dissolution of the concept of territory as a bounded dominated space. The horizon of which is a dissolution of the discrete senses and an experience of out of place.
A selective listening that can drift from the sounds of my hands touching the body of the instrument, to the “depths” of the soundscape, or to the ecstatic experience of flowing with a repetitive sound pattern. These changes in auditory focus will determine the course of musical performance and imply perceptual changes on the relation of space and sound. In a constant “negotiation” between my body and musical memory and an attention to the sound geography of a certain space and time,.. to improvise becomes an exercise of listening to the territory that feeds the relation between the most intimate of the sounds produced by me in the cello with other sounds that may be heard during the concert. It interests me that this ritual of musical improvisation can be understood as an act of conducting the (active) listening of an audience to a specific sonic environment that exists between the micro-territory of the cello, the macro-territory defined by the surrounding architecture and soundscape and the negative-territory defined by an out of place experience derived from being “in the sound”.
Free improvisation is a musical practice that by the unpredictability of outcome, is more susceptible to be related to the creation of a temporary specific sonic Territory. (shoud I take out acoustic??) Although the solo act proposes a dominance of the player it is also true that it is much more a temporary symbolic appropriation of that space and in that sense it invites the audience to take part on the process of appropriation with all its unpredictable development. Which is very different from having an appriori definition of the sonic context in which you´re involving the audience ???
Free improvising is a process of Territorialization (domination and appropriation of space). It is also important to address the nomadic character of music, and particularly when free improvising, in relation to the appropriation of these multiple temporary territories. There is a particularity in “looking at” the journey, the differences and similarities, in strategies, in outcomes. The specifics and the constants.. These are in themselves discontinuos territories, network territories,
A dificuldade em “apreender globalmente” nossa experiência espacial contemporânea, destacada por Lacoste, tem a ver com a descontinuidade dos espaços – e dos territórios, organizados muito mais em rede do que em termos de áreas. Provém daí um sério dilema político, a ser retomado no item final deste artigo: como organizar movimentos políticos de resistência através de um espaço tão fragmentado e, em tese, multi-escalar e… desarticulado? “
Multiplos territorios e Territorialidades” pg 5
territorio funcional e territorio simbólico
Processos de Dominação “Territórios da desigualdade”
Território sem territorialidade (empiricamente impossível)
Princípio da exclusividade (no seu extremo: unifuncionalidade)
Território como recurso, valor de troca
(controle físico, produção, lucro)
“Território simbólico” Processos de Apropriação (Lefebvre)
“Territórios da diferença”
Territorialidade sem território (ex.: “Terra Prometida” dos judeus)
Princípio da multiplicidade (no seu extremo: múltiplas identidades)
Território como símbolo, valor simbólico
(“abrigo”, “lar”, segurança afetiva)
debate the following aspects:
1. In “acoustic Territories” Brandon Labelle discusses that: “Home weaves together the idea of place with belonging: to return home is to retrieve the locus of one’s first experiences. In contrast to these projected ideals, mobility, transience, and homelessness become signs of transgression against the stability of the ordered home. To leave home is to break the bonds of family and community while also fulfilling a vision of progress, of familial extension. Further, the homeless body ruptures the lines between domestic interior and public exterior by placing acts of dwelling onto spaces of social gathering and public experience.”
This is a perspective which fits clearly the way the solo concert is a “musical” transgression when placed in a street or in a space which is not a “musical” space, or when it adopts strategies which include not expected ways of occupying space or clearly defining the separation between audience and performer. There is a long history, specially in performance art, where this boundaries and constructed territories are destroyed or criticized.
2. The cello (instrument) as The Home: “As Gaston Bachelard notes, the home is a fixed yet potent concept against which all other spaces are balanced and experienced, an archetypal image generating an array of psychic projections.3 “
The sphere of domestic space is a key geographic point within the movements and energies of everyday life. For most it is the singularly fixed space from which everything else circulates; a base from which one proceeds into the world, and to which one regularly returns.
The home as a projected stable site, as a coordination and organization of the flows and ruptures inherent to everyday life, to the destabilized core of the self, expresses interiority by becoming an intimate reflection of life and its private rituals.
For a player her/his musical instrument is inevitably compared to home. The long and frequent relation that a player develops with its instrument potentiates a psychological dependency on this body. The continuos resonant properties which tie both bodies in one vibrant cluster.
Specially in free improvisation the instrument, with all its fetishism, is the
The solo concert was the chosen performative situation to experiment this approach. The focal attraction rendered by this event on the musician´s performance on his instrument, creates in the audience the expectation of establishing a strong attraction to the music being played on that event, securing a commitment with an acute sonic attention.
David Toop: Into the maelstrom / pag172 solitary subjectivities
An obvious performative center is established: the cellist. The dramaturgy is usually centered on the fixed position of the cello, a chair or stool for the performer, a closed light on them. This is where everything will take place. From here the sound of the cello will “invade” the space around it.
From where I stand as a performer, the solo event is a “limit” situation considering the “risks” being taken. The extreme focus on the player´s performativity renders at the same time a powerful and a risky position to be in. There is a sense that one is given the “power of manipulating” the sonic space, while at the same time being in a completely “out in the open” situation.
As Johannesen further explains it, we should think of dialogue “as a stance, orientation, or bearing in communication rather than as a specific method, technique, or format.” In this sense, dialogue refers more to an “attitude” toward or spirit of communication (2002, p. 58). In contrast, the opposite, or antithesis, of dialogue, is monologue, any form of communication which “seeks to command, coerce, manipulate, conquer, dazzle, deceive, or exploit (Johannesen, 1971, p. 377).
Listening and human communication in the 21st century/edited by Andrew D. Wolvin
These contradictory experiences of the self when articulated with the proposed territorial listening made way to a discipline of free improvisation which was also very attentive to the dramaturgy of the concert (i.e. the musical performance). The static and attentive listening apparatus of the concert room, with a stage-audience separation, and optimum acoustic diffusion for the sounds produced on stage is still the basis of most contemporary live acoustic instrument musical rituals. (Although music rituals have changed dramatically due to the proliferation of acousmatic music_should I concentrate on free improvisation musicking?)
Musicking: the meanings of performing and listening / Christopher Small
Queens online resource (staff students only)
This is a crucial question for this research as the musical/sonic approaches are intertwined with the creation of the spatial apparatus for the concert. Much of the use of territorial listening (as explained before) in the improvisations development is also expressed in the way the audience perceives the whole of the ritual. Where they sit or stand, how the cello is amplified, where are the sounds diffused from, what is the configuration of the cello-audience relation, how do you “enter” the solo concert, what happens after the performer stops playing… How does the duration of the experience affects and reflects the context where it happens..
Although there is a performer with an instrument that temporarily inhabits different venues/places to play, there are a number of differences/specificities which can be looked upon/taken into account when preparing a new piece (?). Not a “musical piece” but a “musical ritual for a situation” /// a “musical situation”. Or creating a situation with musical and architectural impact/expectation. (?) A situation where the performer plays its own musical instrument with a certain number of gestures, but also plays the room and the architecture, the soundscape, in the sense that through sound he/she/it establishes a sensitive and emotional relation to an audience in that specific moment and place.
The specific site becomes a generator for an artistic practice (articulating music and architecture) and which “transfigures, desfigura? and configures” the place (time and space) where it is happening. The site, its sounds, acoustic properties and other context characteristics, becomes an integral part of the artistic/musical experience. The body is called to participate in multiple forms (…) drifting in between different disciplinary expectations (? from concert to installation, from architecture to sculpture, from text to video, from object to sound…)
Ek-Stasis, from the Ancient Greek, means “to put out of place”. (…) Francesco Borromini and Balthasar Neumann dematerialized matter by mixing forms, crossing shapes, and exploding them with light. This created disorientation, a confusion of the senses, which is essential to Ek-Stasis and, inevitably upsetting to normal Protestant Rationalists (…)
Charles Jencks: Ecstatic Architecture 1999
Multisensory integration, also known as multimodal integration, is the study of how information from the different sensory modalities, such as sight, sound, touch, smell, self-motion and taste, may be integrated by the nervous system. A coherent representation of objects combining modalities enables us to have meaningful perceptual experiences. Indeed, multisensory integration is central to adaptive behavior because it allows us to perceive a world of coherent perceptual entities. Multisensory integration also deals with how different sensory modalities interact with one another and alter each other’s processing. (CROSS-MODAL É SINESTESIA E MC GURK EFFECT…)
ex. Medusa (mirror) when the footprint of the bandstand is replicated in the morphology and position of the suspended metal tubes their suspension is expected to induce a subtle sense of disorientation.
Through the empowerment rendered by the situation the “use” of “free improvisation” seemed important to embody the idea of a site-specific manipulation of the acoustic horizon concerning the spatial listening approach which also includes an architectural or objectified notion of the territory. Meaning that the categories of micro and macro territory, used earlier as metaphors for a listening mode, are also defining in other terms the “situation”:
Macro-territory: the venue, the context for the concert/installation: if it is a gallery, a music festival, what is the common expectation for the performance or exhibition in that specific place…
Micro Territory: *nomad. It is characterized by the topology of the instrument and the specific relation between the player and the object-instrument.
The exploration of the acoustic horizon is an exercise of territorial definition, in the sense that the musician is appropriating the limits of the acoustic territory and redefining its meaning. It is creating a temporary symbolic territory centered on the specific relation of the cellist micro territory with the macro territory of the exterior soundscape?? The monumentality of the cello´s sounds, the sudden changes in the perception of distance from the acoustic to the electroacoustic.. all these features of the syntax and vocabulary of Medusa are addressing and playing the perception of territory. The solo concert…
“Exploring” implies also a “Manipulation” of the acoustic horizon = relation of power between the improviser and the public. Manipulating the acoustic horizon implies manipulating the sonic territory in a certain space and time. The soloist controls the acoustic space in that space and time.
A perceptual strategy to achieve this power relation between performer and audience is to play with a perceptual distance between the sound source and audience. In this case a larger distance (safe distance) is less threatening and space dominating than a closer one. (Listening to war_Daughtry_Oxford 2015). Another strategy is to play with the perception of the acoustic dimension of the sonic space. Both these strategies imply a change in scale and distance for and to the sound source (performer and cello).
ROUTES: Exercises on the road?????
For each of these 3 abstract listening zones??? (REVER ISTO À LUZ DOS CONCEITOS DE TERRITORIO) I created a group of exercises to practice the “listening zones” performance.8
These exercises should be seen as ways to embody this conceptual reading of performing place through its sonic properties.
_These exercises should be first performed in sequence and after that they may be practiced in whatever order with variable durations.
_They are also supposed to be used in live performances in whatever order and duration.
_In this context it is not necessary to use all the exercises.
_Each time practicing one should choose a different place.
Listen in silence to the soundscape and after having identified all the sound sources create a sound that obliterates that sonic image for 5 seconds. Repeat this several times increasing the duration and changing the sound.
Take any sound used in the previous exercise. Start a phrase with that sound and connect it to repeated actions that produce a repetitive continuous texture that excites the resonant frequencies of the room. Introduce fast bursts that interrupt that repetition and shift the repeated action to another sound with similar resonant properties.
Using the most “favorable” note for exciting the room, improvise melodic lines that use that note as the tonal center. This exercise should include tonal and microtonal variations of any kind as long as it holds the notion of tonal center.
If using any amplification system9 increase the gain of the microphones to the threshold of feedback and produce sequences of sound that test that limit. Take special attention to the position of each sound in space.
Using the multilayer regenerating feedback loops build a layered chord that optimises what seem to be the strongest resonating modes of the room; starting on the the tonal center used in exercise 3. Do the same for the weakest resonating modes.
Change each of the feedback loops at least three times and build chords that move your perception from the weakest to the strongest resonating modes and vice-versa. This should be done slowly.
Further exercises should be devised in order to address the specific particularities of each site/venue.
EXERCISES FOR MULTITERRITORIAL MUSIC
Listen to the cello recording for ROji // think about the infinite melody and the myth of the “horizontal melodic line” vs “vertical chord” // the multiple horizon concept in melodic construction //