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ANIMA MUNDI is a project that is based on cooperation and exchange of experiences in the field of sound art, addressing issues of ecology and sustainability. The specificity of sound-based art lies in its strong connection to the environment. As sound artists often perform recordings and field activities in nature, urban environments or in relationship to architecture, their practice is strongly relational. These themes are reflected by Anima Mundi’s focus on the relationship between humans and their surroundings – both human interaction, the shaping of shared space and care for nature. Sound sensitivity becomes the starting point for a deeper understanding of our coexistence.
Anima Mundi aims at establishing a network of sound artists, that facilitates artistic exchange on the most existential questions of our time: How can we meet and understand the climate crisis? How to deal with the environmental transformations? How can artists, cultural spaces and a society in general practice and support sustainability? What can we learn from each other regarding possible solutions?
The Anima Mundi event series will accommodate sound performances, sound installations, experimental approaches to music and sonic experiences, workshops, lectures and audio releases.
The first meeting and event, Anima Mundi #1, took place in Gorzów (PL) in October 2022 in cooperation with Errant Sound and Liebig12 from Berlin; cultural spaces which specialise in experimental music and sound art. Three sound performances by the Berlin-based sound artists and composer-performers Julia Cremers, JD Zazie and Janine Eisenächer took place at MOSArt – Miejski Ośrodek Sztuk as well as one sound installation at Terminal 08 by Janine Eisenächer.
In her first solo exhibition, performance and sound artist Janine Eisenächer presents two works that both explore in different ways the manifold co-existential relations and entanglements between us as human beings and the non-human things that surround us. While focusing on all present sonic materialities at play, the artist investigates in particular how we relate to our environment through sound and listening. Inspired by Erin Manning’s term ‘relationscape’, Eisenächer underlines the relevance of our movements – physical, emotional and mental – and actions in this collaborative process, that are always expressions of existing and new relations coming into being.
In the 4-channel sound installation ‘MOVING through/with SOUND. Pt. 1: Cycling’ (2022), the artist invites the listener to dive into the soundscape of her cycling the Apulian mountains of the Gargano. Here, the specific interplay between Eisenächer’s movements, her bicycle, the temperature and the wind, the course of the track, the landscape and the different types of concrete become audible as one multi-sensing, multi-sounding body. With ‘Sounding Things’ (2022), a site-specific sound installation developed for Terminal 08, Eisenächer invites the visitor to wander through a landscape with things based on sound-practical actions she did with them in the space. The recorded sounds of those actions are made audible in a 4-channel sound installation that activates and opens up the space to listening and imagining of what might have happened there.
In her research performance-series Doing sounds with things, Janine Eisenächer explores the possibilities of co-existence and co-creation, of “being-with“ (Donna Haraway) things through sound, sight and touch. She understands the present things not as functional objects but as things and matter we live-with and listen- with, that have their own agency and presence, their specific material qualities, stories and resistances.
In Doing sounds with things #1, the artist engages in real encounters with these things in a care-taking and maybe even conflicting manner. The performance is a live situation of co-llaborating and community-building by carrying out sonic- spatial practices with them. In experimentally and playfully creating sonic “string figures“ (Haraway), Eisenächer underlines the generally multi- and inter-sensual and -sensory processes of human (inter-)action and perception, including one’s desires and imaginations, and particularly highlights the relevance of sonic- tactile and listening practices, experiences and knowledges in art and everyday life for our world-making.
The Berlin-based performance and sound artist Julia Cremers researches the meeting point between sensoriality and virtuality. Interested in the constructed understanding of the world around us and our cultural identities, Julia’s work observes specific ways life is able to act within (re)constructed environments. Cultural heritage sites, places of touristic interest and memorials are addressed as a kind of scenography; for the imagination as well as for Julia’s performative experiments and audiovisual installations.
The artist performed her work ‘Our Nature’, which interplays pre-recorded sound fragments and live sound and music making, while showing video scenes of historically significant places in Greece, Bulgaria, Romania and Poland. The performance consists of a video, a piano, a shell and a drum computer. Stripped from any textual narration that could contextualise the relevance of the shown landmarks, the images underwrite the idea of ruin and loss. “How to connect to a shared past, and experience its relation to the embodied presence?” are questions addressed in this work. Julia’s own presence in the space underscores these questions.
More about Julia Cremers: link to website
‘Memory Loss’ is musical fantasy on how the decay of stored data affects the everyday experience. Built around self recorded HD electromagnetic sounds, corrupted audio data and field recordings. The work is a reflection on how the process itself of accumulating and storing information already contains the idea of loss.
More about Zazie: link to website
The upcoming second edition, Anima Mundi #2, will take place at Errant Sound in Berlin from December 9th to 18th and will feature three sound installations and sound art performances by the Berlin-based musician Jeremy Woodruff and Polish performance and sound artists as well as musicians Hubert Winczyk, Monika Winczyk and Kuba Kosecki. The works will be accompanied by artist talks.