soil horizons

on-going research into vibrational resonances and life in soil systems. 

interconnected structures, settling, salinity, cavitation, substrata burrows and paths


soil horizons - spit soil beds
Divfuse Art Space, London - April 2023

certain recordings from the project will be featured in a forthcoming series for Apple TV

alongside the listening research (soil horizons and ink botanic most recently) is something else;
to un-write
false borders 

to write about not writing 
to leave blank space, avoid translation of place
ownership through imposed language
a dissolution of non-human realms

intuitive equity 

I can't remember the first time I listened to sounds in the soil. It would have been when I used minidiscs more regularly, though there is a tape somewhere with some recordings on that I remember labelling as such. Is it important when it was? I think about it only because the current interest in such sounds is a history being re-written, names left out, context re-shaped. I came to the process via some of those names. 

I think, in the eighties or early nineties, I read about a Japanese artists associated with Gutai, placing a microphone in the ground, sometime in the 1970's. The piece was conceptual and I don't think anything was said about the sound. There was an image, with several members of the group pictured and it wasn't clear whether the piece was a collective one or that of a single member of the group. 

I heard sounds stated as being recorded in the soil on records, though some were probably sound effects, foley. I read texts about sticks being used by indigenous communities, to listen for grubs, water courses and signs of drought. When I was visiting Australia I heard first hand the sound of large grubs along fence wires, and then hearing how this same method, with ears pressed to the fence posts, was used by communities then.

The small, cheap tie-clip microphones I used with my first mini-disc recorders, along with contact microphones and hydrophones, were wrapped in a plastic bag and dug into flower beds, fields and compost heaps. Like my boxes of minidiscs waiting to be transferred, I think about all the stories, images and research that are sitting somewhere, perhaps uncatalogued, perhaps already assigned to the recycling, and how the names are loose from the current narratives.

I want all of the history. It's long and goes way outside of the walls of scientific research. 

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