Resonant soundscape and temporary autonomous zome
Commissioned by Lisboa Soa, Estufa Fria, Lisbon, Portugal.

Passagem is a soundscape installation in resonance with the acoustic space of a tunel and an aural architecture based in a zome geometry. This architectural soundscape was created for the event Lisboa Soa – Environmental Sound Art Festival, at Estufa Fria gardens. In the noisy urban centre of Lisbon, this soundscape enhanced an ecosystem of water tunnels already present, but usually unnoticed by citizens. It resonated with an existing passage-way into specific frequency patterns. Surveys report that this unexpected experience induced a state of unusual well-being in this part of the city.

Note: as the soundscape experiments operated with resonance frequencies (meaning that sound waves of particular size were in relation to each place’s specific spatial volume, geometry and materials) it is not reproducible through audio documentation because the acoustic effects are gone. These psycho-physical effects could only be heard and felt in the specific space of the installation.

Recorded with DPA 4060 stereo omnidirectional microphones. For an immersive experience, please listen with headphones.

Audience experience and feedback
The event received a great amount of audience. As in my previous experiments, I have conducted a survey by leaving a notebook with the question: how do you feel with this experience? Here follows a transcription of some of the comments.

The tunnel – audience’s feedback
Impressive! I felt like a plant for the first time! Seeing with vegetable ears.
No time. A dimension with a lower frequency.
I feel like I’m falling into a hole. I like the strong sensation in the sounds, it seems like I feel it inside myself. I closed my eyes and it becomes much more powerful!
With my body inside the wall, but with my ears out.
I’m in a menthol cave, with water drops going up and going down
(signed: Tiago, 9 years old)
Inspired. The entrance was not very inviting, but the way out opens a new world.
A passage is normally an in-between space, but here it becomes a place in it-self, like a reality bubble.
I remembered I breed! It reminded me how sensual the sound of water is… I wonder how would sound the fire, the earth, the wind…?
Flying in the water  Refreshed Relaxed
Water transports me in harmony and balance
The sounds travel through the stones like if they are communicating between themselves

The zome – audience’s feedback
Sliding in life
I don’t want to go out
In another world
In my world
In balance
Very calm
Is this what bees hear? I like this shape. It smells good like the earth
(Joana, 7 years old)
Tuned with the vibrations of this space
I feel the transmission of nature on an human shape, like if it was a real person.

(C. Martinho, Passage survey, September 15-17, 2017)

Affective experience of environmental sound
Drawing from the comments, it seems like everyone got attuned, and there was a diversification in the affective experiences. It was an experience of non- verbal communication between being and place. On the one hand, it created an affective experience of environmental sound as a presence in the now, a sense of self as part of a field of energy of the site, a driving force. Sound and acoustics enhanced communication with vibrational forces at work in the site, that are usually unnoticed by humans. On the other hand, the aural architecture of the zome acted as a point of centering in the balance of self with the surroundings.

More here, minute 30

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