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AIR Simon Whetham - Week Four


Week four (7-13 June 2021)
Location: Marseille, France

You may recall that in the last update I had decided that week three would be devoted to documenting the current live performance setup I presented at Ferme-Asile, Sion, CH and Data, Marseille, FR to illustrate more the approach of the project and to then show how it develops through the residency.

Well the documentation continued throughout week four also, as I had to reshoot quite a few scenes (some are still too dark even now but this video is more for reference than a final presentation).

So I slowly set up and recorded the sections of the performance, videoing from as many angles as possible, then syncronising sound to video for each clip as I record separately rather than directly into the camera. Previous attempts resulted in rather noisy sound, so I would rather take my time by recording with preamps and synchronising after.

These recordings will also be recomposed as a future album and I prefer them to be separate from the video for this also.

The video can be watched using the link below – but in watching it once again I have noticed a strange glitching effect that seems to divide the picture into quarters. The original footage doesn’t have this so I am not sure at what stage this occurred but I will now have to return to it and replace the affected sections.

There were no meetings with artists based in the Netherlands this week. However I did get to meet Signe Lidén, a Norwegian artist who was involved in the Resonance – European Sound Art Network event that Bart van Dongen informed me of back in week two.

I found that Signe’s work has some parallels with my own – not the projects involving obsolete technology but my Traceable Echoes projects. Her project Writings uses a number of syluses to draw circles in mounds of earth taken from a riverbed. The sound of the stylus moving through the dirt, stirring up the past, can be heard through the use of contact mics. But significantly, she used what she described as a huge clockwork-like mechanism attached to the ceiling of the exhibition space to cause the styluses to move.

Simon Whetham

Marseille, France

Simon Whetham is our Artist in Residency from May until July 2021. He will use his residency to further develop the activation of discarded mechanical devices using sound impulses to be presented as a live performance. The first stage of this project was carried out during the residency at Ferme-Asile, Switzerland.
This period of research involves collecting sounds from Marseille and Breda and utilising them in the activation of objects found or donated in both locations. The first six weeks will be carried out remotely with me recording sounds in Marseille and testing their properties in the studio. I am meeting with the team of Witte Rook on a regular basis to discuss the progress of the project, but will also be connecting with artists and organisations in The Netherlands to discuss all aspects of the project and find further opportunities to present the results.
During the final three weeks I will be in residence at Witte Rook, physically meeting everyone I have connected with and presenting the results in Breda and hopefully other places.

AIR Simon Whetham - Week One
Week one (17-23 May 2021) Marseille, France This week was spent exploring Marseille for sound activity, much as I would have d...
AIR Simon Whetham - Week Three
Week three (31 May-1 June 2021) Location: Marseille, France   I had decided that week three would be devoted to documentin...
AIR Simon Whetham - Week Two
Week two (23-30 May 2021) Location: Marseille, France This week started with a trip out to the Piscine de Luminy to see a perfor...