edited by Mario Côté and Brigitte Kerhervé – Archives Sonores


booklet+dvd, 44 pages, Canada, 2009, EAVM/Hexagram, ISBN: 978-2-922392-11-1
“Sonic Architecture” is an expression used to describe very different things, from the architectural audio-reflective properties of a building to the structure of a complex piece of music. But within Archives Sonores, it faultlessly expresses architectural spaces that represent pieces of the urban collective memory, through carefully planned recordings. Côté and Kerhervé, researchers at Hexagram in Montreal, have spent three years painstakingly recording city spaces. Instead of making standard field recordings, they have chosen public places with different acoustics, with the aim of rendering what the pubic actually hears while passing through or pausing at these locations. So there are recordings of popular car parks, as well as churches, schools, libraries, curling and bowling halls, stations, and factories, with no interest in being overly comprehensive. Think, for example, about spaces due for closure, complete refurbishment or demolition. Videos of these spaces would trigger our visual perception and most likely conjure up specific memories. But, spatial sound recordings preserve another important spatial perception: the auditive world. It gives us specific information about these places (their resonance, for instance) causing our brains to recognize even more vividly and triggering the most appropriate visual memories.