Sonic Acts marks a new season of Night Air events with Shock Waves
On Friday 5 November from 19:30, Sonic Acts marks a new season of Night Air events with Shock Waves at OT301 in Amsterdam. In an evening of talks, performances and films, Shock Waves considers the materiality of sound as a powerful means of resistance and control. Attend on Facebook VENUE & ENTRY OT301, Amsterdam House rules QR code (proof of vaccination or a negative test result) and ID required TICKETS Full programme: €6 presale (sold out) Performances and installation (from 22:00): €5 available online and at the door LINEUP Elena Cohen – Talk María Edurne Zuazu – Talk Yann Leguay – Talk and Performance Noise Diva – DJ set whiterose – Performance N/pantla, performative installation by Paula Montecinos & Pedro Matias FILMS by Aura Satz Between the Bullet and the Hole (2015) Preemptive Listening Part 1: The Fork in the Road (2018) Sonic weapons like the Long-Range Acoustic Device (LRAD), ‘roof knocking’, or ‘music torture’ are frequently used as part of the arsenal of state violence. Elena Cohen’s work as an attorney and professor specialised in repressive police practices offers case studies of how these can be deployed in protest, detention, and warfare, causing a range of harm from disorientation and psychological distress to permanent internal damage. As María Edurne Zuazu writes in Loud but Non-lethal: Acoustic Stagings and State-Sponsored Violence, such instruments rely on high-intensity and focused sound to suppress individuals by impairing their auditory systems. Yann Leguay’s performative lecture speaks to the dematerialisation of sound and the evolving effects of interfaces, featuring an electrical arc produced by a plasma speaker so powerful that it emanates magnetic disturbance. The two films by Aura Satz approach sonic obedience and disobedience through the trope of the siren and investigate ballistics as a field of study in relation to the role of women in early computing. If the energy of sound can be harnessed to cause harm and stifle dissent, it also constitutes a creative field for confrontation and resistance. Paula Montecinos and Pedro Matias’ installation N/pantla presents a corporeal debordering of fractured sound – addressing how intimately tied gendered and racialised capitalism are to our communal sense of self-preservation, while performances and DJ sets by local artists whiterose and Noise Diva invite us to embody dissonance and noisemaking on the dancefloor. ARTISTS & SPEAKERS María Edurne Zuazu's interests focus on intersections between material and auditory cultures in relation to questions of cultural memory, social and environmental justice, and the production of knowledge (and of ignorance) in the West during the 20th and 21st centuries. She is a Postdoctoral Fellow at Cornell’s Society for the Humanities. Elena Cohen is an attorney and professor within the City University of New York system. She is a founding partner of Cohen Green PLLC (“Femme Law”), a small firm serving the needs of the New York City queer and activist communities. She was lead counsel of a suit challenging the New York Police Department’s use of Long Range Acoustic Devices. Yann Leguay is a Brussels based artist who focuses on notions of dematerialisation, the use of interfaces and the materiality of sound. In concerts he pushes the boundaries of accepted norms of audio behaviour, using uncommon machineries for the playback of audio media: opened hard-drives as turntables, an angle grinder as a microphone or the sound of the electricity. N/pantla is a performative installation developed by visual artist Pedro Matias and sound artist Paula Montecinos. In a transdisciplinary approach they research attempts to involve the audience’s body into a dynamic ecosystem of sounds and extended sense of listening. whiterose is the stage name of Lecxi Doomer – an Amsterdam based performer, producer and artist premiering at Shock Waves with a new take on metal music. Noise Diva, also known as Yara Said, is a noise explorer and sonic chaos curator whose work draws its inspiration from industrial noises, the breath of the city, shouts, hugs, death, love, and linear and nonlinear or disrupted narratives. FILMS by Aura Satz Between the Bullet and the Hole (2015), 11 min A film centred on the elusive and complex effects of war on women's role in ballistic research and early computing. Like a frantic animation storyboard, it explores the flickering space between the frames, testing the perceptual mechanics of visual interpolation, the possibility of reading or deciphering the gap between before and after. The film questions how we read, interpolate or construct the gaps between bullet and hole, perpetrator and victim, presence and absence. Preemptive Listening Part 1: The Fork in the Road (2018), 8 min A short film that serves as part 1 of a larger research project on sonic obedience and disobedience through the trope of the siren. The film posits the siren's loud glissando wail as a conditioned and learned signal, one that can potentially be perceptually and musically rewired. Shot on 16mm, the film is literally driven by its soundtrack, as the voice becomes a beacon, activating emergency rotating lights. TIMETABLE 19:00 Doors open 19:30 Introduction 19:40 María Edurne Zuazu – Talk 20:00 Elena Cohen – Talk 20:15 Yann Leguay – Talk + Performance 20:45 Discussion 21:30 Films by Aura Satz 22:00 N/pantla – Performative installation by Paula Montecinos & Pedro Matias 22:30 whiterose – Performance 23:00 Noise Diva – DJ set NIGHT AIR Night Air is a series of events that aims to make pollution visible by bringing forth the various side-effects of modernity: from colonial exploitation of people and resources to perpetual inequalities brought about by the destruction of the environment and common land – in other words, destructive capitalist practices that shape both our environment and human-nonhuman relations. **Night air is a myth with its origins in miasma theory (from the Greek for ‘pollution’). The theory held that smelly air from decaying organic matter caused illness. The smell would intensify and worsen by night, so night air became synonymous with poisonous and noxious vapours that could even cause pandemics such as cholera or plague. Only with developments in medicine and various scientific endeavours around the London cholera epidemic in the mid-1800s, did germs replace the ‘unhealthy fog’ as the culprit for diseases. And now, even though the idea has been abandoned, night air still echoes in words such as malaria (‘bad air’ in Italian), which actually connects air-borne poison with flying pests such as the disease-carrying mosquitoes.