UTILITY: Sound in our space

By Jo Phillips

Look & Listen_© GG Archard_HiRes_24 SMALLLook & Listen exhibition, Sto Werkstatt, 2015

The Werkstatt has opened its new exhibition in collaboration with Klassnik CorporationLook & Listen, aims to engage with the visitors through sound experiences, encouraging reflection on the sonic aspects of architecture and how these affect our daily life.

Based in Clerkenwell, East London, the Werkstatt is a place for collaborative creativity. It is a building where the designers and architects part of the Sto Werkstatt Group can come together to create and be inspired.

Look & Listen has been designed by The Klassnik Corporation in collaboration with sound artist and designer Doug Haywood who is also a singer, songwriter, recording artist and music producer.

Look & Listen_© GG Archard_HiRes_02 SMALLLook & Listen exhibition, Sto Werkstatt, 2015

The Klassnik Corporation is a design collective founded in London, 2006 and seeks to engage with the audiences through art events, performances and architecture, producing art designed for collective participation in public spaces. Tomas Klassnik, the Corporations founder, says in an interview with Huntergather: “I’ve always admired installation artists and how, through choreography of materials, objects, concepts and spaces, they can create meaningful experiences with wit, intensity and clarity, a process I try to replicate.”

Look & Listen_© GG Archard_HiRes_12 SMALLLook & Listen exhibition, Sto Werkstatt, 2015

The exhibition’s display has been conceived using sound systems provided by Sto, gently pushing the viewers to reflect on the acoustic qualities of interior spaces and also showcasing the potential of the materials used to allow clearer sounds and reduce reverberation. Colourful and bold designs work together with Haywood’s soundscape slowly introducing the thought of interior spaces that could benefit from the sound system, such as train stations and lecture theatres.

Look & Listen_© GG Archard_HiRes_07 SMALLLook & Listen exhibition, Sto Werkstatt, 2015

The work is reminiscent of sound-art curator Miguel Álvarez-Fernández, whose art piece “itinerarios de sonido” (journeys of sound) in collaboration with a selection of other artists, created a widely acclaimed sound-art piece to be displayed in bus stops. “Journeys of sound” was conceived with the purpose of naturalizing the interaction between art and the audiences, and also encouraging the public to re-invent their daily life, that moment of pause whilst waiting for the bus, through the sound piece they are listening to, which offers a new interpretation of that public space. These art piece aims to provoke a reflection on the way space and its sound affects daily life.

“Sound-Wall”, created by artist Peter Vogel, 2009, possesses similar characteristics to Look & Listen. Vogel’s Sound Wall, needs the viewers’ participation, and brings a reflection on the relationship between sound, space, and those who inhabit it.

Klwd SchattenPeter Vogel, “Sound Wall”, 2009

The Look & Listen exhibition is free and will be open to visitors until the 1st of May 2015 at Sto Werkstatt in Clerkenwell, London.

Look & Listen_© GG Archard_HiRes_15 SMALLLook & Listen exhibition, Sto Werkstatt, 2015

Those interested on sound art and performance, should keep their eyes open for the next Kinetica Art Fair, which has become a key date in the Art Fair world. The artworks exhibited in this fair celebrate human interaction with technology and new media, and how it affects us and how it can inspire us in our daily lives.

“Comparable to the great international exhibitions of the Victorian era, which combined new developments in the arts, science and technology…” The Londonist

Kinetica Art Fair 2014 opened its doors from 16th to 19 of October and was held at the Old Truman Brewery in London.

Titia Ex Flower of the UniverseKinetica Art Fair,2012