On/offline events in ENGLISH


OCTOBER 5-15, 2021

Online-meetings of the Conference take place in Zoom webinar.

Offline-events are taking place in Moscow and Saint-Petersburg, in the RAS Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, RAS Institute of Russian Literature (Pushkinsky Dom), galleries GRAUND Solyanka, Sound Museum, Art-Center Pushkinskaya 10 and independent space «Eto zdes'»

Almost all the offline events were also available to join online via Zoom webinar.

Most of the talks and discussions were available both in English and Russian (in Zoom)


[time zone — GMT+3]


october 5october 6october 7october 8
10:00-12:00conference opening
+ papers section
round table
12:00-14:00papers section
papers section
papers section
papers section
15:00-18:00papers section
papers section
papers section
papers section
+ Q&A
round table
movie screening
+ discussion


morning master-class (rus)round table
(rus, offline)
круглый стол
круглый стол
time for visiting sound installation
free timesound walks
listening sessions
time for visiting sound installationslistening sessions
discussion on the results of the conference
audio-visual lecture
+ movie
listening sessions
sound installation presentation + discussion
sound installation presentation + discussion
closing remarks
+ concert

(with live interpretation in zoom)

[time zone — GMT+3]



05/10 10:30-13:30 + 15:00-18:00 section
[problem fields and sounding environments]

Sound is not just a sign of place — it shapes the territories available for description and fixation.  

In this section we will not discuss the problems of the «universal field,» but will turn to the multiplicities with which conference participants work. We will talk about the materiality/ephemerality of sound fields, local ethnographic contexts, alternative city soundscapes, and the alienation of sound in landscapes of computer games.

Of all the sections of the conference, this one is the most voluminous, eclectic, and… problematic. It probably won’t be easy to trace or make connections between all the topics and plots collected in it. But at least we will listen to each other, and perhaps hear each other.

The following presentations will take place:

The Birth of Music: Folklore intonation between singing and «speaking». Ekaterina Dorokhova (Moscow/Saint-Petersburg)

«Buran’ mun’ so — The sound of buran is heard»: the changing soundscape of the Yamal tundra. Aleksandra Teryokhina, Aleksander Volkovitsky (Labytnangi)

Anthropological Field as a Sound Project: Deceptive Materiality/Sound Criticism. Vita Zelenskaia (Regensburg, Germany)

Sound Recordings in the Fieldwork of an Ethnomusicologist — Contexts and Problems. Veselka Toncheva (Bulgaria)

Spectral Stratigraphy: Listening to monument sites in contested territories. David A. Calf (Melbourne, Australia)

For a Critique of the Psychic Economy of the Sound. Bourdieu’s «Social Libido»: there and back again. Dmitry Bochkov (Moscow/Vienna), Innokenty Martynov (Moscow)

The Gameplay Side of Sound in Computer Games: Ways to Define Space. Vladislav Kirichenko (Saint-Petersburg)

«Symbolic articulation» of international political communication in the auditory accompaniment of diplomatic ceremonies. Tatiana Barandova (Saint-Petersburg)

Hydrofeminism and Sound Studies of Rivers in St. Petersburg. Results of Summer Laboratories. Marina Karpova (Saint-Petersburg)

Investigating Sounds: Audio Recording of Interviews as Investigative Material and as Evidence. Lidiya Rakhmanova (Saint-Petersburg)

Kin Listening and Voicing in Altay-Sayan Mountain Homelands, Inner Asia. Robert O. Beahrs (Istanbul, Turkey), Victoria Soyan Peemot (Helsinki, Finland)

The Sounding Landscape of the Arctic: A Dialogue between Human and Nature (case of Taimyr). Oksana Dobzhanskaya (Dudinka, Krasnoyarsk region)

05/10 19:00-21:00 LECTURE-INTERVIEW

Theodore Levin and Stephen Feld are among the generations of anthropologists/ethnologists/ethnomusicologists who have witnessed the gradual transformation of sound recording devices from something large, heavy and surprising to something mobile, self-evident and extremely various. Along the way — not without their participation — the ways of studying sound in the field transformed, the discipline of «anthropology of sound» took shape, and a «sensual turn» took place in cultural research, and sound studies became increasingly non-disciplinary or transdisciplinary.

A lecture-interview about research and personal experiences with field recording, acoustemology, sound art, and forms of publication of field recordings was prepared especially for the conference. 

After listening to the lecture, it will be possible to ask Stephen and Theodore questions as well as share your own reflections, feedback and comments.


06/10 10:00-11:30 lecture
Tatjana Zobnina (Yekaterinburg, Russia)

The lecture will familiarise the audience with existing strategies for using artificial intelligence to work with audio data, learn how a task must be organised in order to be solved by machine learning, and the listeners will have the opportunity to ask all the most awkward and tricky questions about neural networks — and perhaps get answers to them.


06/10 12:00-14:00 секция

[exploring and (re)creating acoustic spaces]

If sound can be recorded and reproduced, does this mean that it is possible to recreate a sound event? Probably, it is possible if not only the sound waves themselves are recorded and reproduced, but also some fundamentally important characteristics of the space/context in which these waves once traveled. Spaces and contexts have a huge number of important characteristics. Which of them are important for sound? What tools, what methods are used to capture them? Video? Text? Something else? And finally, why do we need to capture/reproduce/create sound environments at all?

These are the questions we will be asking as we listen to and discuss the following presentations:

Mapping the Unobservable: The Sound Route as a Research Tool, Creative Method and Musical Form  Boris Shershenkov (Saint-Petersburg)

Layers of sound: the perception of the city in user videos. Darya Radchenko (Moscow) 

Creating Acoustic Multidimensional Spaces in Modern Multimedia. Ekaterina Davidenkova-Khmara   (Saint-Petersburg)

06/10 15:00-18:00 section

The story about a group of professional researchers who came to unsuspecting inhabitants of village N, decided that they are quite suitable for the role of informants and began to voluntarily and involuntarily initiate the singing of memorial psalms is practically always a colonial story. The rare researcher with a microphone is not guided by the «gold standard of folklore», does not hint to performers that they should sing «as they used to» (and to themselves that they should record and seal this «as they used to» by all means).

The methods, standards, etalons, and reveries of field recording have changed from era to era. Let us discuss how it was and how it has become. And also think about the possible future of field recording, of course.

The section will include presentations:

Instrumental music of the Kalmyks as recorded by F.N. Gauchberg in 1939.

 Svetlana Podrezova (Saint-Petersburg), Guilyana Dordjieva (Boston, USA) 

Sound-Producing: the Shape and Localization of the Working Orifices on Mayan Wind Musical Instruments of the 1st millennium A.D. Irina Demicheva (Nizhny Novgorod) 

From the History of Recordings of Sart-Kalmyk Folklore. Boskha Borlykova (Elista)

Anatomy of Polyphony: Experiments in Sound Recording, Leningrad, 1935. Brian Fairley (USA, New York)

Ethnocultural Islands of the Russian Abroad. Early sound recordings of the musical folklore of the Danube Lipovans. A look at the prospects of study. Irina Savelieva (Moscow)
Problems of working with archival sound recordings: The Collection of A.V. Anokhin. Galina Sychenko (Rome, Italy)

06/10 19:00-21:00 round table

How do we save a field recording? Should we hide it from prying ears, or on the contrary, should we publish and distribute it? How do we publish a field recording? Save it in its unchanged «raw» form or prepare it in a special way, process it, change it? What is the interest and risk of all this? Researchers and practitioners working with field recordings in the context of ethnological, ethnomusicological and anthropological research, the practice of DIY ethnography, the publication and popularization of field recordings, as well as sound engineering and research of archival collections will discuss the practices of collecting, archiving, systematization and publication of field recordings.


Svetlana Podrezova, Ekaterina Dorokhova, Bulat Khalilov, Kirill Chebotarev, Svyatoslav Kaverin, Dmitry Arzyutov,


07/10 10:00-11:30 lecture
Denis Sivkov (Moscow)

Anthropology of space explores the communities of those who explore space and imagine possible encounters with extraterrestrial civilizations. In doing so, as in other social sciences, the subdiscipline emphasizes visual and textual/written representations. Sound is still in the blind spot of anthropology of space. How is it possible to research cosmic sounds in anthropology? How are sounds related to space imagined, constructed, and perceived in different communities? What material possibilities and constraints determine the creation of cosmic sounds? 

The aim of this lecture is to outline the field of sound studies at the intersection of anthropology of space and other social sciences, to make a preliminary markup of this field, and to identify themes/subjects of the anthropological study of cosmic sounds, such as: contact music (Voyager), sound messages from space (SETI), extraterrestrial sci-fi movie music, and cosmic meanings in pop and rock music.

07/10 12:00-13:30 + 15:00-18:00 section
[fixation, analysis, and transformation of sound]

Upon returning from the expedition, the anthropologist fills out a report specifying how many hours of recording were made, what exactly was included: creaking doors, goats bleating, spontaneous political agitation at a stall, wedding karaoke, whatever. The fate of the recording, once it has become an audio file, is unpredictable. Recordings are cleaned (or not), archived (or released on labels), posted for free access. Or maybe just deleted as «not good enough.» How sound turns into data, and what should be done (or not) with it — we will discuss at the section.

The program of the section includes the following speeches:

From Whispering to Shouting: On the Fixation of Unsung Forms of Intonation in Folklore. Galina Paradovskaya (Vologda)

Peculiarities of the auditory data collection of the city within the multisensory approach. Ekaterina Sokolova, Alisa Storchak (Moscow)

Using field recordings in speech processing tasks. Elena Klyachko, Oleg Serikov (Moscow)

Fixation, Analysis and Transformation of a Sounding Word in Russian Mosques 

(role of Arabic phonetics in the fixation of sound material). Alfiya Shayakhmetova (Krasnoyarsk)

Sound walk: research practice in and outside cities. Lilia Akivenson (Saint-Petersburg)

Repeated field sound recording as a pathway to knowledge and polytextual representation of a piece of traditional music. Igor Matsievski (Saint-Petersburg)

Information possibilities of multichannel audio and video recording in the study of traditional polyphony problems. Galina Tavlay (Saint-Petersburg)

From text to sound: voice reproduction machines Katerina Raskolova (Perm)

Exploring the Electronic Voice Phenomenon (EVP) as an example of modern technological occultism and field recordings. Vladimir Cherepanov (Moscow)

07/10 19:00-21:00 лекция
mechanical recording processes and historically informed performance practice
Inja Stanović (Sheffield, UK)

This lecture discusses mechanical recording processes in the context of a four-year research project (Re)constructing Early Recordings: a guide for historically-informed performance, which came to the end in February 2021. Supported by the Leverhulme Fund and University of Huddersfield, this unique and highly experimental project focused upon the production of early recordings made with mechanical technologies and aimed to understand the extent to which performers needed to adjust their playing in response to the recording medium and recording process. 

Throughout four years, various recording contexts were reconstructed, including a large number of phonograph cylinder recordings (2 and 4 minutes), 7 and 10 inch records of solo piano and diverse chamber settings. By presenting a selection of recorded materials, and discussing various mechanical recording technologies used during the recording process, this lecture suggests ways in which technological and reconstructive contexts form a redefinition of strategies of documentation, thus influencing future readings of early recordings and historically informed practices. 


08/10 10:00-12:00 round table

The invention of sound recording technologies has revolutionized linguistics: it has become possible to analyze speech in detail, to verify its interpretation, to collect and use sound materials to preserve endangered languages, to create auditory didactic materials, and much more. Experts in the field of sociolinguistics, phonetics, phonology, phonosemantics, and language teaching will talk about the different ways and purposes of fixing, reproducing, analyzing sound recordings, and using them for studying speech, as well as about the problems and prospects of linguistic field research. 

The following speeches will be delivered: 

Introductory Sounding of Language. Marina Liublinskaya, Taisija Golovatskaya, Sofya Unru (Saint-Petersburg)

 — Frequentals and Typological Anomalies of Phonetic-Phonological Systems of Paleo-Asiatic languages (on the example of Ket, Itelmen and Nivkh languages) Stepan Kalinin (Moscow) 

Field Linguistics Before and After the Invention of Sound Recording. Olga Kazakevich (Moscow)

On the Objectivity of Description of Folklore Material. Pavel Skrelin(Saint-Petersburg)

Vocaliz and Vocables: the Phonosemantics. Elena Shamina (Saint-Petersburg)

T.V. Chukaeva, U.E. Kochetkova, D.A. Kocharov, A.N. Vlasov will also take part in the round table.

08/10 12:30-14:00 section
[territories, languages, and communities]

The way we name the things that sound, how we describe the sound experience, how we learn to ignore everyday noises by lumping them into the category of «background,» is what shapes the category of sound in culture. 

The experience in the field is almost always an encounter with an unfamiliar sound for which we, as researchers and listeners, may not have a name.

The strange new sound is insistently built into the reality of the researcher, not having time to grow into interpretations, but only multiplying conjectures. Gradually we learn to ask informants about it. Significant sounds, sounds-signals, sounds-social constructs that are usually ignored or not discussed… Each new field situation teaches the anthropologist to listen in a new way, to check sound realities with the bearers of local knowledge. The work becomes less and less familiar and more full-blown.

This seemingly classic topic for anthropology and ethnography of sound is represented at our conference by only three papers. Why? Let’s talk about that, too. 

Papers included in the section: 

Peculiarities  of lyric songs of Russian-Belarusian-Ukrainian borderland. Yury Marchenko (Saint-Petersburg)

Between Mythology and Sound Studies «on the Other Side of Human»: Sound Behavior of «Restless Loci» in the Culture of the Volga Finns. Dmitry Doronin (Moscow), Andrey Kharlov (Nizhny Novgorod)

Sectarian chants as perceived by Orthodox people. Aleksander Rozov (Saint-Petersburg)

15:00-18:00 section
[position and role of those who are recorded and those who are recording]

Does the experience of recording form the boundary between writers and performers, between technique and the environment? Are these environments hermetic (and equivalent)? In the section we will address performance reflection and the research experience of collecting sound material, talk about the specificity of sound recording with the participation of children as performers of folklore texts, and think about musical instruments as listening bodies.

The following papers will be presented:

Folk Performers on Sound and Sounding: Reflection and Practice Elena Yakubovskaya (Saint-Petersburg)

Musical instruments as listening objects/bodies. Anna Shatilova (USA)

Sound and Sound Images in the Visual Texts of the Carriers of Tradition. Irina Popova (Saint-Petersburg)

From the Experience of Recording Vocal Texts from Children: Communicative Aspect. Tatyana Kaluzhnikova (Yekaterinburg)

How Sound Changes the Folk Performer (special case). Vera Nikitina (Moscow)

19:00-21:00 movie + discussion
Carlos Casas (Barcelona, Spain)

The film follows the life of the last whale hunters of Siberia, Their ability to survive using archaic hunting techniques forced by International Commissions. The film is divided in two parts: winter and summer.

I wanted to capture the hunting in all its splendor all its ritual with its inner times and cycles. Focusing on their everyday hunting procedures, the film wants to transport the spectator to a scenario where one of ancient hunting traditions still exist. I was interested in their survival and their feeding cycles. A film that captures the honesty and strength of the worlds last whale hunters. From fish to seal to whale, we see the food chain of a whale hunter, their lifestyles, we witness the remains of a millenary whale hunting tradition that is disappearing. Survival in these desolate lands depends only on their hunting rituals. I wanted the film to be a sort of action hunting film, without much dialogues a pure cinematic and visual experience.


19:00-21:00 lecture + discussion
sound at the crossover of ethnography and the visual arts
Carlos Casas (Barcelona, Spain)

In the lecture Carlos will present his various interdisciplinary projects and share some thoughts and experience of how research and artistic interests might be combined in the fieldwork, what problems this combination might reveal and how to deal with these problems.

After the lecture, conference attendees and listeners will be able to join the discussion, ask questions, and share their experiences.

Carlos Casas (b. 1974, Barcelona, Spain) is a filmmaker and artist whose practice encompasses film, sound and the visual arts. 


10/10 19:00-21:00 audio-visual lecture
the alchemy of the fusion of sound and the «filmic» in experimental film
Fjodor Gladilin (Saint-Petersburg)

In my lecture I would like to address the following themes and phenomena :

⦁ The interaction of field recordings and video art in its various manifestations. The general picture and possible types of connections. Chronology of the interaction. History of the technique;

⦁ Peter Kubelka: the alchemical counterpoint of sound and video. Viewing fragments of his films and analysis of editing techniques;

⦁ Structural film and field recordings — ways of synchronization, working with duration. Examples from the films of James Benning, Ernie Gehr, and Jonas Mekas.

⦁ Found-footage and audio chronology. Jean-François Lyotard and his concept of «a-cinema;

⦁ Recorded sounds as a dominant feature in film. Ismail Bahri’s film Focus;

⦁ Visualization of sound — as part of the «filmic». Examples will be considered where video follows the structure of the soundscape, or where the visual embodiment of sound (spectrum) becomes the protagonist. Lawrence Abu Hamdan’s film Rubberized Steel. Visualizer programs — the parameters of sound as video-matter transducers. The birth of a new medium.



20:00-21:00 movie screening + discussion

Mike Hoolboom, Heather Frise (Toronto, Canada)

A short bio of iconic Vancouver composer and sound ecologist Hildegard Westerkamp. She was the only woman to participate in the original version of the World Soundscape project that not only brought new ears to city life, but laid the foundation for noise bylaws/pollution standards, radically upending traditional notions of music, the role of the composer, and found new uses for the portable tape recorder. In addition, Hildegard has brought the art of sound walking to groups around the world, and in these face-to-face encounters she has formulated a deep feminist ecology rooted in the body. This experimentalist short offers a place for the viewer to listen, conjuring the space of listening as the necessary precondition for personal and societal change.


12/10 16:00-18:00 field recordings listening sessions and discussion

sound behavior of «restless loci» in the culture of the Volga Finns. 
Dmitry Doronin (Moscow), Andrey Kharlov (Nizhny Novgorod)

Several open and closed loci, «voiced», according to the actual mythological representations of the locals, by the sound behavior of non-human subjects. were selected for the experiment.

In most of the cases under consideration non-human subject agency is reduced to a function, predicative description of a mythological character in a nullmorphic hypostasis, or the subject of sound behavior is the «restless» locus itself, viz:

— an old Mari house built with unacceptable ritual violations (the matting and ceiling boards were taken from an even older predecessor house);

— «devil’s road», sacred groves (keremeti) and trees in the Mari north of Nizhny Novgorod region;

— relics of the mytho-ritual system of another Finno-Ugric people (Erzya) in the south of Nizhny Novgorod region: some springs, the «Cherevatov elm» and the Dubrovo grove venerated more than a century ago.

The insistence of mythological narratives imposing the sound activity of these loci, as well as the repeated personal experience of outsiders — folklorists and ethnologists — invading these, alien to them cultures, but culturally induced and partially domesticated by long interaction in the field — all this led to the idea of a series of experimental records. In addition to control recordings (in ordinary village houses and woods) and long sound recordings of silence without presence of people and electric devices, an experiment was also made with a communicative component — with voicing short standardized «questionnaires» of six sentences in Erzyan and Northwest Mari language dialects.

The result of the influence of the addressee’s sound vibrations on the acoustic environment of the loci studied was recorded on a professional digital recorder Zoom h6 in the form of a Wav sound file with a sampling frequency of 96 khz and a resolution of 24 b. 

As a result of the analysis of the frequency characteristics of the files in the sound editor DAW (Cubase 10 pro) the following main interpretative strategies are proposed:

— «Frequency-resonance interaction hypothesis» due to features of materials, surfaces, etc. of the loci studied;

— «Hypothesis of unpredictable situational effects» of the superposition of waves generated in the house by electrical appliances, meter, electrical wiring;

— «Esoteric hypothesis»: sound behavior of agents designated by mythological narratives (natural spirits, posthumous hypostases of people who lived here, etc.);

— «Local acoustic memory hypothesis» of unexplained etiology: recorded acoustic phenomena include a speech formant with local dialectal peculiarities and reference to place-related events.

12/10 19:00-21:30 listening sessions + discussion

play and the production of place in Shanghai and São Paulo
Lena Kilina, Paulo Beto (São Paulo, Brazil) 

This case study suggests to investigate features of urban place and play and its existence in distinctive space — Shanghai (case study Redtown) which can be realized during the art exhibition in Wuhan.
Abandoned places indicate the «deadness» of modern architecture. This is due, primarily, with the differentiation, the division of labor. The fact that the division of labor proved to strong and effective means of obtaining various quantitative results and achievements of higher speeds. Technology has taken the path of specialization and achieved, especially in the XIX century, huge success. But, as always happens, every successful application of gun leaves in the shade caused by defects in its application. It always creates something and something breaks. The destructive effect of modern technology is only now beginning to be realized to the full, because for a long time, he was overshadowed by his positive, productive effect. 
This loss — there is loss of «vitality.» And people are constantly compensated for this loss, obscure quantitative success. Quantitative as well have expressed in our current situation in productivity. Efficiency and speed — that’s what trust is, almost iconic objects of modern civilization. A completeness, integrity, viability and meaningfulness of existence is lost. City willingly destroys its structure, replaces them with new ones. Urban civilization has become the machine of oblivion, memory destruction.  

Kevin Huo, Kenneth Huo (Fairbanks, Alaska, US) 

This audio recording is a collection of archival pieces, musical pieces, and ethnographically recorded audio from Alaska across time and space. Audio recordings are creatively combined under the direction of a father (Architect) and son (Anthropologist) definition of a soundscape. 

By bridging together interviews of world-renown anthropologists who answer ‘What is Anthropology’ via the Alaska award-winning «Speaking of Anthropology» radio show and natural sound recordings. This piece will explore the various realms of nature and environment meeting with design, landscape, and the industrial world. 

20:30 A SONG OF GLASS AND TEAR GAS: a soundscape of football disorder in Marseille during Euro 2016
Julia Amatuni (Saint-Petersburg)

In 2016 the UEFA European Championship (Euro 2016) was held in France. Different cities hosted different games, and I was conducting my fieldwork in Marseille, where England played Russia. 
This championship became sadly known for its violent clashes, particularly in Marseille. Visiting football supporters were fighting each other and the local fans. Many people were involved in the confrontations with the police, and the police, in turn, were applying force, tear gas and pepper sprays. 
On an acoustic level, the sense of disorder was growing from a conflicting variety of sounds. Most of these sounds could be referred to as belonging or not belonging to the realm of everyday life and anticipated or not (and by who) for this environment and event.
It would be tempting to assume that familiar and expected sounds belong to the orderly part of the event, whereas unfamiliar and unexpected to disorderly one. However, the film seeks to demonstrate how sound’s context or intensity also influences the sense of the environment, making the soundscape a dynamic and fluid social force.
The film is a short footage of what I was seeing and hearing on the streets of Marseille. It provides not simply a documented sound as a form of mechanical description. It challenges the viewer to reflect upon the roles different sounds play in shaping the sense and space of liminality during a football disorder.


19:00-21:00 sound installation presentations and discussion

Anna Martynenko (Saint-Petersburg)

Every map is a fixation of a sound picture at a certain point in space. The coordinates of the point and the time of observation are written in the lower left corner of the sheet. In the lower right corner, the orientation of the direction of gaze (listening) in relation to the sides of the world is indicated. A specific graphic language has been developed to represent sounds.

A circle with a black dot in the center represents the observer and his surroundings; two circles on the left and right indicate the location of the head (orientation of the ears). The observer hears a sound, identifies the source, and draws it in the circle on the side from which he hears it. The closer the source of the sound to the observer, the closer to the center it is depicted. Noisy sounds are indicated by dots, sounding sounds by lines, the loudest sounds are drawn as spots.

If you type the point coordinate in Google Maps (latitude and longitude), you can find out where the mapping is done. Selected places with the most interesting sound environment: nature, avenues, institutions, etc. in different cities where the artist is. There are maps made in Tyumen, Sosnovy Bor, Zelenogorsk, Volkhov, St. Petersburg, Rostov-on-Don, the city of Yenakievo (Donetsk region)

Denis Sapuntsov, Dmitry Morash, Tatiana Tian, Nikita Mikheev, Vasilisa Filatova, Maria Mochalova, Natalia Liubimova, Alevtina Borodulina, Anastasija Yudina (Moscow)

The team of authors is a working group of the project «Noise, Silence, Stillness: Sound in the Field and in the Museum» — an inter-institutional collaboration of the Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the «Sound Art, Sound Design» department of the School of Design at the National Research University Higher School of Economics. The project holds on to the shaky and flickering interest of social anthropologists and sound artists in each other and in the tactics/methods/principles of working with field sound recordings. In July 2021, undergraduate and graduate students and staff of the School of Design at the HSE and IEA RAS made a joint field trip to the city of Tarusa, where they conducted an anthropological and artistic study of noise, silence and stillness in urban space. The materials collected in the field (audio recordings, field diaries, etc.) were analyzed, reinterpreted and processed for display in the gallery space in the format of sound installations.


16:00-18:00 listening sessions + discussion

Alëna Korolëva (Toronto, Canada)

What a relief to arrive at last in this new city. Your feet are restless, they take you across bridges and underneath construction sites, under the river even, where you embrace views that make you feel like you have ears all over your new body.
This hour-long travelogue grazes across sonic neighborhoods that might resemble Tbilisi, Batumi, Toronto, Havana, St. Petersburg, Ulyanovsk, Strasbourg, Marseille, Naples, Reggio Calabria, Lisbon and Barcelona. Or at least, the sound sources, the original copies, were first heard there. 

Egor Klochikhin (Moscow)

From 1971 to 1981 Sergey Kosichkin, a resident of the Kaliningrad region of the USSR, recorded the audio dimension of important events in the life of his family: birthdays, March 8, and the New Year with a reel-to-reel tape recorder. The preserved archive is an occasion to discuss several topics: the role of personal audio sources in the study of the history of late Soviet everyday life, the specificity of the medium of magnetic tape, the performativity of practices of documentation of family celebrations.

19:00-21:30 sound installation presentations and discussion

Andrej Guryanov (Moscow)

Evgeny Kruglov (Moscow)

There are more than a hundred small rivers flowing throughout Moscow, but most are hidden under the ground. The structure of the city was originally formed around various natural sites. People fed on the benefits of water oases and settled on their territory. The process of encroaching rivers underground began in the late 18th century. The city sprawled, and rivers were moved into underground concrete tunnels in the built-up areas. Now, walking around the city you can find a lot of portals, hiding behind the underground rivers. 

Life flowing through these rivers leaves behind an image of an invisible presence that enters into a symbiotic relationship with urban space. This relationship is expressed through changes in the structure of the soil and provokes deformations of the strip foundation of buildings. In this case, each type of soil has its own scenario of deformation.

The object of my observation is the sound landscape of underground rivers of the city. Many of these rivers can be called anomalous, due to the mystery of their origin. Large brick collectors, channels not marked on maps, the absence of surrounding drains and cracks in the corridors create an energy of confrontation. Through this phenomenon we can find the key to understanding the relationships of social sites in the Anthropocene epoch. The recordings are collected using specially constructed underwater and classical microphones to convey not only the incredible acoustics of the underground tunnels, but also the dynamic musical structure of the river currents. 

Innokentiy Ludevig-Cherneckiy (Saint-Petersburg)

The material in this study is a documented history in July 2020 on Mount Vottovaara in Karelia. The mountain is famous for its mystical environment, where neo-shamans of different cultures and countries gather and perform rituals. One of the documentation objects was a magnetic audiotape fluttering in the wind. This object served as the basis for the sound installation » Sounding». 

This story is about a sound that exists and does not exist at the same time. 

About the first sound, from the waves of which the world appeared and which will remain after the end of the world. A sound that embraces human life from all sides.

A sound that is a message in itself, that includes everything, being everything at the same time. A kind of Ouroboros.


12:00-16:00 sound installation

Francisco Lopez (The Hague, Netherlands)

Rainforests are natural acousmatic environments: whereas they typically manifest an astonishing sonic variety and complexity, the sources of all those sounds are overwhelmingly invisible.

‘Hyper-Rainforest’ is an immersive sound work, presented in an installation form, that has been created from original environmental recordings carried out by the artist, along with an extensive and intensive experience of profound field listening, during a twenty-year period in rainforests all over the world.

None of the sounds that can be heard in this work –even the most surprising and outlandish– have been processed or transformed. In stark contrast with the most traditional approaches of so-called field recordings, however, this work does not aim at reproducing or simulating any natural “reality” of those original locations. Instead, with a forceful compositional character, this work develops an elaborated and subtle form of hyperreality that strives to generate a self-sufficient sonic virtual world, solely created from those original recordings, with no transformation and with no added sounds, instrumental or otherwise.

‘Hyper-Rainforest’ constitutes a perceptual and existential rabbit hole that operates not through the recordings themselves in the usual representational sense but rather through the phenomenological characteristics of this sonic substance as sound-in-itself -with the same ontological status that any sound sources- as well as on its spatial-temporal organization and the multiple forms of its incarnation. With all its natural pre-composition features in multi-layered timbral complexity, spectral content, virtual inner space, and temporal evolution of environmental transitions.

This work is thus presented as a non-representational immersive experience where the traditional tools of illusion (microphones, speakers), typically used for mimesis or simulation, turn instead into ontological probes that generate hyperreality.


In the focus:
sound-installatio “Hyper-Rainforest”
+ essay “Sonic creatures” by Francisco Lopez

Speakers, moderators:
Julia Glukhova, Lilia Akivenson, Vita Zelenskaya, Vasilisa Filatova

All conference participants and listeners are invited to read Francisco Lopez’s essay «Sonic Creatures», then listen to his installation «Hyper-Rainforest» and then discuss the relationship between sound and text, drawing both on these examples and on what happened earlier in the conference. 

Writing is largely a tool for recording sound (speech) — but not only. Textual comments on audio recordings seem necessary and unavoidable, especially since a digital recording is already a text proper, and every audio file has some name or at least a format. Nevertheless, it is difficult to talk and write about sound, and even more difficult to describe specific sounds. It seems that, at least in European languages, there are far more words to describe space than there are to describe time — so perhaps we often resort to describing the visual, tactile, proxemic and other spatial characteristics of sound, or naming its [assumed] source, rather than talking about the sound itself. 

The essay «Sound Creatures» is about rethinking the experience of coexistence with sound, questioning the need to define/think sound through its [assumed] source, and reflecting on «sound as such,» «sound as it is,» and «sound as a thing.» 

We invite everyone to continue these reflections and to voice them in a pre-final discussion at the conference «Field Sound Recordings: Music, Speech, Landscape».

Comments of the conference participants and organising team, discussion on the perspectives

Svetlana Podrezova, Ekaterina Dorokhova, Vasilisa Filatova, Roman Ignatiev





ШС duo


+ Denis Sapuntsov, Dmitry Morash and others