Sound as a by-product. Eat me.

Participatory sound installation, Brussels, 2020

multi-channel sound, audio transducers on plastic helmets and tupperware, stereo speakers, construction helmets, packed food.

This audiovisual research started in July 2020 during the artist-in-residence period in Q-O2 - an arts laboratory for experimental music and sound art in Brussels, Belgium. My initial curiosity was to explore audio-gustatory experiences as alternate ways to create a sensation of physical contact between me as a performer, the work itself, and the audience within the social-distancing setting of the covid pandemics.

During the residency period in Q-O2 I was doing a theoretical and material research inspired by the theme of “lunch concert”, largely known as a moment when an institution opens its doors for a public musical performance during the lunch time with free admission and no reservation policy. If you've ever found yourself in the Netherlands, outdoors or inside a cinema or concert venue, in a not-so-formal setting around 12:00 or 12:30 you might have been treated with tupperware popping noises, rustle of brown paper and aluminium foil. It always fascinated me: the combination of offered musical program with those discrete food consumption noises which have an ability to spread through the public like circles on water.

'Sound as a by-product. Eat me' was first presented as a lecture and participatory sound experience-in-progress where sonic textures of prepacked meals consumption were intertwined with a non-scored multi-sensory experience, transmitted via stereo speakers and through audio-transducers installed on tupperware and construction helmets. The public was encouraged to come in slightly peckish for bites and sounds, with warm fingers and relaxed jaws. An assortment of healthy and unhealthy snacks, fruits, crisps, and sparkling drinks was presented in the room. In this experiment I was looking forward to establishing sonic and haptic contact between the audience and the piece.

In the project “Sound as a by-product. Eat me” I am looking into the sonic texture of food consumption outside of a dining or restaurant setting. I want to explore participatory aspects of eating typical packed lunch goods: biting on an apple, unwrapping cheese sandwiches, crumbling plastic and aluminium foils from cereal bars. Instead of muting the public, I am intrigued by the idea of creating a live mix of those participatory interventions and ''basso continuo'' of pre-recorded spatial sound composition.

As an artist I often work with public participation and employ physical modes of contact between sound elements, myself and the participants. However the current situation of touch and physical proximity stigmatisation imposed by the pandemics  suspends the familiar techniques of creating a kinetic, haptic, and largely physical experience for the public within the audio installation setup. If I desire to create work in the context of public art and live performance I need to look into alternative modes of enabling multi-sensory experiences. 

Photo documentation of the event in QO2 by Caroline Profanter

Eat me (like a chef).

Podcast-style audio piece, Amsterdam, 2020

As a continuation of this curiosity after the AIR period in 2020 I started a new podcast-style series 'Sound as by-product' released on P U L S E channel by C O M (E) P U L S I V E platform.  It studies parts of our life where sound has a quality of a by-product - an incidental or secondary outcome of the main activity. Think of cooking, eating, home appliances, sex toys, masturbation sounds, as well as voice interaction with animals or electronic devices. 

The first episode is called 'Eat me (like a chef). This is a podcast style audio piece by Alina Ozerova. It covers the topics of noisy foods, carrots silencing, burping, and many more. It is a monologue of an ambitious mouth envious of celebrity-chefs. Think of Gordon Ramsay's lips meeting Hannibal Lecter. You can listen to it using your favorite headphones. Please, have at hand a snack of your choice so that we can bite on it together.