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symposium #7

Internet Auditoriums
LOCUS SONUS audio in art

24 & 25 march 2012

École Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture de Nantes
-- (School of Architecture of Nantes)

24 march 2012, 9pm

Le Lieu Unique

Accord-cadre CNRS/Ministère de la Culture
-- (French Ministry of Culture & Research Agency framework agreement)
LAMES MMSH Laboratoire de Sociologie UMR 7305 - Université de Provence
-- (LAMES MMSH Sociology Research Lab - University of Provence

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Symposium #7 - Internet Auditoriums
An auditorium is a place of listening.

The term refers both to the architectural structure; the framework defining or hosting a place of listening and to the acoustic and technical design ―shared, collective and simultaneous― which allows an audience, or a group of auditors to be together in a listening “space”.
The dimensions and conditions; the nature of these spaces and the way we perceive them have progressively evolved in accordance with social, aesthetic and technical changes in audio broadcasting and other forms of audio distribution. The spaces of these auditoriums are continuously being explored and re-organised for artistic purposes (music, sound arts, radio broadcasting).

This symposium will focus on auditoriums, their interrelations and influences within a technological framework and from the point of view of artistic assimilation and reception. Our intention is to clarify both current and past issues, which up until now have possibly been considered from a unique viewpoint. Thus, this reflexion convokes various domains: sound anthropology, sociology of communication, history and geography of sound spaces, acoustics, architecture, musicology, radiophonic studies, art history, aesthetics, philosophy, etc. And of course, artistic and musical creativity.

Social practices, including artistic usage, have always deployed and instrumented sound techniques and technology, contributing towards the emergence of today’s digital, networked auditoriums.
Our purpose is to interrogate those characteristics: visual and audio; strategic and scenographic ― the praxis of sound production and reception, which have developed through and for these spaces. These characteristics include: the concurrence of presence(s) and the reconstruction of absence(s) (schizophonia, acousmatic situation, sound spatialization, audio streaming, etc.); the orchestrated, co-ordinated and syntonic collaboration of participants and performers; the specific nature of musical processes and audio streams; the pervasive nature of sound.

Thus, hypothetically, the Internet has become a universe of “auditoriums”; a vast panoply of auditor spaces, be they public or private, synchronous or asynchronous; to be considered among all the other social and architectural places of listening. We need to identify and analyse: issues relating to this geographical and temporal distribution and dispersion; the re-organisation of these spaces as they are traversed by sound, transported and propagated in new ways.
The segmentation or dislocation of music and sound devices in a network should not obscure our perception of its coherent structure, which we propose can simultaneously be homogenous and in disjunction.

a) - What are the new forms of listening ? What are their purposes and what issues do they raise ? What realms of imagination do or can they engage ?

b) - Does the current diversity of reception and listening modalities, increase or restrict perception of our sound environment in its temporal and spatial immediacy or expansion ?

c) - How are new auditoriums modifying our reception and perception of different artistic productions ?

d) - What are their structural characteristics, how are they set up and developed ?

e) - What are the means and conditions necessary for the instrumentation of these particular types of listening ? How do current techniques establish and encourage specific forms of listening and perception, and how do they participate in building new ‘acoustics’ ?

f) - What conditions favour the formation of these audiences, who engage in both individual and collective listening? How are these specific modes of action, participation and sharing approached and apprehended ?

g) - How do they modify and influence artistic practice (related to both music and sound) and from a wider point of view, social auditory praxis ?

The INTERNET AUDITORIUMS symposium is organised by Locus Sonus (École Supérieure d'Art d'Aix en Provence, École Nationale Supérieure d'Art de Bourges - Schools of Arts Aix en Provence & Bourges) and by LAMES MMSH (Laboratoire Méditerranéen de Sociologie - Sociology research lab),

with the partnerships of École Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture de Nantes (School of Architecture of Nantes), and Le Lieu Unique (Nantes)
with the help and support of the Research Agency & French Ministry of Culture framework agreement.