Listening Space is an artistic research developed with Afroditi Psarra that explores transmission ecologies as a means of perceiving the surrounding environment beyond our human abilities. Conceptually the project seeks to define transmissions ecologies as raw material for artistic expression, to understand and re-imagine in poetic means, representations of audio and images broadcasted from space.
By investigating the energies that have been harvested by humanity to knit this complex layer, a turbulent sea of radio waves that penetrates the fabric of our everyday lives even if it remains unseen and unheard, we aim to create critical connotations between textiles-as a means of data detection, collection and archiving, and bodies as agents of power to re-interpret current technologies through handmade crafting techniques. Specifically, the ecologies of transmission that comprise the Radio Spectrum, are no doubt the ultimate expression of the Anthropocene, as they permit the operation of human life as we know it (telecommunications, environmental monitoring, radio astronomy, FM/AM radio, etc) and shape our understanding of the planet. In this context, the research project Listening Space seeks to explore satellite transmissions, as discrete embodied machines, by observing their liveness – sentience, at a rhythm dictated by their orbit.
Further development on this project is anticipated in Spring 2021, with Audrey Briot’s artist residency and Eleftherios Kosmas’ technologist residency in DXARTS at the University of Washington.
Bergstrom Award for Art and Science, 2020
Afroditi Psarra and Audrey Briot. 2019. Listening Space: Satellite Ikats. In Proceedings of ACM ISWC conference (ISWC’19). ACM, London, United Kingdom, 4 pages. https://doi.org/10.1145/3341163.3346932
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Listening Space is an artistic research that was born during the eTextile Spring Break camp that took place in upstate New York at the beginning of April 2019. Following their previous explorations of ecologies of transmissions and wanting to experiment with Software-Defined Radio, the authors, setup a DIY satellite tracking station and aimed at intercepting the NOAA weather satellite audiovisual transmissions. During the course of three days, they observed five satellite passes, intercepted successfully three transmissions and decoded the audio signals into images which they later knitted in order to create a textile archive of the transmissions. Conceptually the project seeks to explore transmissions ecologies as raw material for artistic exploration, to understand and re-imagine in poetic means, representations of audio and images broadcasted from space, while regarding knitted textiles as a physical medium for memory storage and archiving.
Listening Space will form part of the exhibition Weather Engines which will take place in October 2021 at the Onassis Cultural Center and National Observatory in Athens, Greece. Curated by Daphne Dragona and Jussi Parrika.
Listening Space will be presented at Le Cube in Paris in the context of the exhibition “Cosmos Connexion” in January and February 2021 – postponed for Fall 2021.
Sentience, ISEA 2020 (International Symposium of Electronic Arts), Montreal, Canada, virtual exhibition and online performance.
OurNetworks Toronto, Canada, online performance.
ISWC19 Design Exhibition The 12th Annual Design Exhibition at the International Symposium on Wearable Computers London, UK.
They speak about the project:
Listening Space is featured in the essay ‘Planetary Radio’, which forms part of the Sonic Continuum strand of The Contemporary Journal. In this essay, geographer and radio-amateur Sasha Engelmann, asks what environmental-climatic dynamics, intersectional modes of listening and sonic possible worlds travel around the planet through the radio spectrum.
Read Planetary Radio by Sasha Engelmann →
Listening Space featured in Intergalactic Empathy, Elisava Insights, 75 Challenges Faced by Humans and the Planet, An Innovation Report by Elisava Research, Barcelona, June 2020 ISBN: 978-84-09-20608-7 https://doi.org/10.46467/ElisavaResearch_Insights
Read the report here →
Listening Space on Afroditi Psarra’s website
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