Audio Examples   SOUNDSCAPE
Founded by R. Murray Schafer in 1971 at Vancouver’s Simon Fraser University, the World Soundscape Project set out “to establish a sort of inventory or archive of the sounds of daily life in our time, from an acoustic, ecological, symbolic, æsthetic and musical perspective.” [Translation] (Dictionnaire des arts médiatiques, “Paysage sonore“ entry)

In soundscapes compositions, one of the fruits of this project, natural sounds are used almost exclusively. The sound sources are recorded using one or more microphones and the recordings are manipulated either very little or not at all. The idea behind this practice is based on the fact that the microphone is not as discriminating and precise as the human ear. The work they produce displays a conscious effort to unveil a different facet of the sound environment, and in this regard, they fully assume pre-established æsthetic choices. This work is thus interested in questioning the limits of our own hearing and what the surpassing of these limits awakens in our unconscious. One of the fundamental aspects of soundscapes is the desire to make the particularities of the recorded sounds or their effects perceptible and to use them as a means of improving the state of perceptive awareness in the listener.

Artists working in this area often present their works in an “immersive” environment involving the recorded sound by itself or in conjunction with an artistic or musical performance. In Acoustic Ecology, as the name would suggest, a socio-political layer of meaning is added to and completes this approach.

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Projet d’archivage Concordia (PAC) Communauté électroacoustique canadienne / Canadian Electroacoustic Community