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Track 7: The Return of the Sonic Real

Track chairs: Trace Reddell (Uni of Denver), Eduardo Abrantes, Dr. Rahma Khazam (independent researcher, France).

The track calls for proposals that explore New Materialism, Speculative Realism and the phenomenology of sound in sonic practices experimenting and operating in-between the sound object as a vital sonic/material hybrid and the psychology of the sonic real. The track is organized in 3 sessions and we welcome proposals which address the focus of one of the specified session themes below.

1. Session: Sonic Materialisms – Trace Reddell

For this session we call for proposals exploring the intersection of sound studies and new materialist philosophies. The session seeks to facilitate further consideration of the characteristic “thingness” of sonic innovation in ways that grapple with converging machinic, technical, organic, acoustic, and imaginary materials. From glitch to vibration, circuit-bending to analogue synthesis, interactivity to installation, sonic materialism should help us apprehend the emergence of the sound object as a vital sonic/material hybrid engaging the phenomenology of human affect as well as posthuman and alien ontologies.

2. Session: Resonant Encounters. Intersections Between Sound Art and Mental Health – Eduardo Abrantes – with Birgit Wandahl Bundesen, Anita Jensen and Jakob Jakobsen.

This panel seeks to explore, via an assessment of transdisciplinary practice, artistic experiments and theoretic approaches from a Nordic context, if and how strategies from the sound arts have been or can potentially intervene positively in the complex environments of mental health – considered as a resonant community, not only of care seekers but care providers. The discussion shifts the discourse from the strict one-way therapeutic approach (music therapy and other established methods), into the experimental fields of mutual exploration – radio experiments, sound collage workshops, embodied listening methods, etc, in order to broaden the discourse between artistic practice, sound studies and mental health.

3. Session: SONIC REALISM(S) – Dr. Rahma Khazam, independent researcher France.

The term sonic realism spans diverse fields, from the use of field recording technologies by musicians or artists, to speculative realism, where it encompasses such notions as sound-in itself, non-cochlear listening and other ways of exceeding the limits of audibility and hearing. This session calls for proposals for exploring both variants of the term and the potential connections between them. Proposals could also investigate new and hitherto unexplored ways in which the term realism might be appropriate to the field of sound. Reference could be made to any timespan or geographical area, the aim being to highlight the richness of a concept that has been exhaustively explored in the visual arts but has yet to find its proper place in research into music or sound.