Two sound works produced for the Geoffry Smart retrospect at the National Gallery of Australia, 2021/22
Art Gallery in Shopping Arcade (link to work)
What strikes me most about Smart’s Art Gallery in Shopping Arcade work is the way in which an otherwise mundane arcade setting can be charged with an acute psychological and emotive gravity. When looking at this work, I can’t help but feel that I am somehow implicated in its mise-en-scène - that I am both observing and being observed; with the arcade space, a type of eerie non-place or no man’s land, necessitating the very conditions of mediation.
My work seeks to explore the question of sentient observation and architectural space through sound. I’m interested in how the sound ‘outside’ the frame can be experienced and understood within the context of the visual situation and how the two worlds might coalesce and form something new. The sounds heard consist of the hum of a world outside: distant traffic, wind, birds etc; all reverberating and resonating through the conditions of the lonely arcade, mixed with the internal sounds of my own body: blood flow and breath.
Cahill Expressway (link to work)
What strikes me most about Smart’s Cahill Expressway work is the eeriness (an absence / presence of something that should / shouldn’t be there) of this urban landscape and the acute psychological and emotive gravity bound up in both the scene’s point of view and the landscape itself. When looking at this work I begin to question my own sense of subjecthood, asking who I am to be positioned here in a visual exchange with such an peculiar character - a character who, on the contrary, appears to be entirely in his element. Moreover, what role does the landscape, as an active force, play in mediating this exchange.
Playing with the idea that the one-arm man may in fact be a spectral embodiment of the expressway and all the energy that has ever passed through/over/under it, my work seeks to offer an animate depiction of such an embodiment through sound. The sounds heard consist of solid vibration recordings of traffic, of bodies of warm flesh and composed minds travelling from a-to-b in metal machines over asphalt and bitumen; captured and resonated through the structure’s metal support pillars.