Audible Forces is a landscape of wind-driven musical installations created by seven of the finest UK sound artists around today. These intriguing kinetic, sonic creations produce other-worldly sounds as nature’s unseen force breathes life into them.
// Phantom Field by Mark Anderson
Twenty one Wind Synthesisers form the installation “Phantom Field”, creating a swirling buffeting soundscape. The Wind Synthesisers use an Atari Punk Synthesiser (built and modified by Graham Calvert) and a modified computer fan to transform the slightest breath of wind into a soaring electronic choir controlled and conducted by the wind. During the day of each show the Wind Synthesisers will be adjusted and played by the artist to create swirling harmonics, and gale force sirens. darkspark.org.uk
// Arpeggi by Mike Blow
Two large kinetic sculptures, each playing a series of notes and creating interfering sound patterns as they revolve in the wind. evolutionaryart.co.uk
// Rol mo wind horse by Jony Easterby
Rol mo wind horse uses goose feathers for the perfect wind sail to catch the wind and instigate a rippling of cymbals. Each wind device uses the central locking device recycled from a car door. Pulses from the device triggers a pair of bronze and cymbals to crash together. Speed and dynamics are altered by the random nature of the wind, which shapes the sound, at times forming sparse splashes and at others raucous crashings. Referencing Tibetan prayer flags and Rol mo cymbals, each crash sends good fortune into the world. The bronze cymbals have been hand raised by the artist.
// Stress and stone by Jony Easterby
Towering, delicate poles bent into arcs by hanging river stones create serene harmonics and percussive flickerings as the wind blows through “Stress and Stone”. Two ten meter high fibre glass poles are put under tension by long strings hanging from the tip of the poles with rounded river stones attached at the end. The pitch of the string varies with the weight of the stone. As the wind blows across the strings, harmonics are created and amplified. jonyeasterby.co.uk
// Aeolian Harp by Max Eastley
Max Eastley’s towering structure is a variation on the classic Aeolian Harp, which was an important influence on Romantic writers and connoisseurs. It takes the form of a set of bow shaped instruments. Reaching high above the ground to transmit the wind from above our heads using amplification, it creates a haunting voice for the wind. The participation of Max Eastley in Audible Forces has been supported by AHRC. Amplification designed by Dave Hunt. maxeastley.co.uk
// Howling Wire by Dan Fox
Dan Fox’s “Howling Wire” is a twelve metre high electro-acoustic wind harp. It is made from recycled military and orchestral hardware. Nylon strings are stretched from the top of a pneumatic mast to the timpani drums to create this giant harp. With weathervane whistlers and elemental sirens, the wind blows through the strings to create its howling sounds. danfox.net
// Sonic Reed Beds by Kathy Hinde
Kathy Hinde’s “Sonic Reed Beds” were inspired by the movement of reeds in the wind. This ensemble of sound sculptures re-imagines the natural reed using sprung steel topped with metal or stone. As they move in the breeze, the tops collide creating random compositions of varying densities, from the quiet, gentle collisions of beach pebbles to overlapping bell-like chimes of metal domes. Visually the sculptures combine a geometric arrangement with organic, wind-induced swaying movements. Enjoy watching a floating surface of beach pebbles swaying at eye level, and examine strange metal flower-heads. Reed bed bases made by Will Datson. kathyhinde.co.uk
// Pigeon Whistles by Nathaniel Mann with Peter Petravicius
Pigeon Whistles takes inspiration from centuries old traditions from Indonesia and China. These small, lightweight whistles are carried upon the tail feathers of pigeons and borne through the air to create a beautiful haunting music. Peter Petravicius, a pigeon fancier for over 40 years, has collaborated closely with Nathaniel to breed and train a kit of Birmingham Rollers. The whistles have been designed using recycled materials by Nathaniel Mann, and are directly inspired by the collection of Chinese pigeon whistles housed at the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford. Mann is a Sound and Music Embedded artist in residence with the Pitt Rivers Museum and OCM. Embedded is supported by Esmée Fairbairn Foundation. nathanielmann.co.uk
Produced by OCM (ocmevents.org) and Oxford Brookes University Sonic Art Research Unit (sonicartresearch.co.uk).
Co-commissioned by Brighton Festival and Without Walls.
OCM is supported using public funding by Arts Council England artscouncil.org.uk
OCM gratefully acknowledges financial support from PRS for Music Foundation prsformusicfoundation.com