Space of an Eye

“.. the eye becomes a small space when everything is focused on it, when there are people… cutting it open…” 

Space of an Eye is a few things;
Physically, it’s a camera tracking your eye movements and projecting it back to you. Allowing you to affect what you’re hearing based on what you’re looking at. Maintain a steady gaze and you hear a single voice recounting his experiences with eye surgery. As your eye drifts across the screen, so does the audio. The further away from the center of your eye you look, the more the sounds break apart. Tales of the religious, the medical, the physical experiences of eyesight and eyeballs are peppered throughout.
Conceptually it’s about the physicality of eyes, about what it means to see and what it means not to. It’s about the boundary between what you see and what sees the thing you see.
And personally, it marks the beginning (of a long coming) collaborative effort between Stuart Lynn and myself to create fun, strange, interactive sound things.

Space of an Eye appeared as part of Bushwick Open Studios Seeking Space, 2017. An online version of the project is in the works.

 

Something about Truth and Space

Seven minutes about truth and the feeling of rooms. Part of a collaborative project to practice mixing by creating some small thing each month.

Collective Bargaining

A few years ago I started piecing together short segments combining archival audio and my own recordings. The practice was originally, just that: practice. A way to cultivate my own mixing skills and play. I produced some terrible things (really.. unlistenable), some decent things, and some very successful pieces. Now, I’ve decided to start uploading these montages to a special soundcloud account: Collective Bargaining

 

For an introduction listen to About Practice, which is a descriptive collage about collecting and constructing.

 

 

Migraines & Tsunamis

This is a non-narrative (but highly descriptive) segment about the prelude to suffering. It’s a play on expecting pain, on remembering pain and on the scales of suffering. Going through the warning signs of a tsunami and the nervous anticipation of an impending migraine. Part audio diary, part collage and part soundscape.

 

Drawback

Before a tsunami hits the shoreline retreats and the sea folds back revealing the ocean floor. In 2004 Mahad X stood outside of a mosque in Xaafuun Somalia and watched the drawback three times. He watched as each of these retreats push the shoreline further and further back. First half a meter…. four meters….. and finally six meters.

476 BC: a Persian army marched onto an uncovered seabed, believing the ocean had unfurled to allow access to the besieged city of Potidaea. They never made it.
365 AD: one historian described “the sea [being] driven away, its waves were rolled back and it disappeared so that the abyss of the depths were uncovered.” He goes on to write about the fishermen who hopped from their boats to collect the drying fish and oysters caught in the mud.

Youtube videos shot on cellphone cameras show tourists marveling at the drawback near Phuket, Thailand during the Indian Ocean Earthquake and Tsunami of 2004. They walk out into the absent surf, unaware of what’s to come. These tourists are witnessing ripples from the same event Mahad watched from the mosque in Xaafuun well over three thousand miles away.

The largest recorded Tsunami occurred in 1958, striking three fishing boats in Lituya Bay, Alaska. Before the wave, a nearby lake dropped 100, feet water escaping from fissures opened by an earthquake.

Prodrome

Pain is deeply personal. From Communicating the experience of Pain by G.D. Schott: “… Attempts to truly describe pain indeed appear as difficult as they are frustrating, yet the need to communicate is overwhelming.” Oliver Sacks once described his patients as “full of metaphors” conjuring hurricanes, klein bottles, and presenting grand images in place of externally perceivable symptoms.

In the heat of my own migraines I cling to imagery. Jumping from association to association, turning an unseen experience into an imagined body horror rich in visceral, carnivalesque narratives. To me, this descriptive exercise can represent, can distract from and can sometimes supersede the pain itself. In these moments I see fissures opening at the nape of my neck, bones pushing through my skin, dried spaghetti breaking against the inside of my skull…  But before the migraine begins, before the imagined violence, I confront the possibility of a migraine through a series of subtle hints.

It’s different for everyone, but for me it’s a series of retreats. My mouth dries, my interests fade, my mental state drifts away. The dryness acts like a kind of drawback before a tsunami.  These are the prodromal symptoms, the natural warning sign for what’s to come.

 

 

This segment also includes original interviews and recordings, construction + archival/found audio. Find a Youtube playlist containing many of the sampled videos and some of those that didn’t make it into the segment. 

Now on Pod Academy: The global Domain Name System in China

China DNSNew interview for Pod Academy is up! Listen to Cyber sovereignty: The global Domain Name System in China

This episode is based on the article Internet Domain Names in China: Articulating Local Control with Global Connectivity by Séverine Arsène and can be found in the 2015 issue of China Perspectives- Shaping the Chinese Internet

More information, resources, etc all at Pod Academy.

As always, cover art by Tiana Tucker (who makes everything I do look so much better)

 

Field Recording

Burning LeavesI have a hard drive full of sounds (long, short, exciting, excruciatingly dull..) and it’s time to let them go. So I’m finally uploading my field recordings to archive.org. All unedited work will go into the public domain.

So far you can find the sounds of burning leaves and yard work and the crowds and birds at a garden sale (also embedded).

 

Hertzoggies and Political Food

We posted our second episode of Political Food and the first (hopefully of many) that has me feeling excited to be working on this project. We interviewed historian Sarah Emily Duff about the South African treat Hertzoggies. It’s a fun episode and very informative. Find more about it at politicalfoodshow.com.

I’m going to one cooking event and one political event this week so expect more episodes from the field. In the next episode we’re back to the basics with just a general history overview and cooking instruction.

First episode of Political Food

We (collaboration with Olivia Bennett) finally launched the first episode of Political Food. To start the series we go through the legend of Hutspot and how the siege of Leiden crafted this dish. It’s an informative and playful 15min layman’s history lesson and instructions on how to cook. We’re still trying to find the best format for the show and learning through every part of the process, but we’re excited about the concept and doing our best to bring it to life! For more information and the recipe go to our blog post about it at politicalfoodshow.com.

We’re finishing up the next episode on Brigideiros, scheduled for Feb 26th, and next week I’m interviewing a special guest for our third episode on Hertzoggies which is set to go up March 11. Keep up with this show on our website or through twitter and instagram @politicalfoods, facebook/politicalfoods and soundcloud/politicalfoods