Edited by Andy Guhl, Tabea Guhl, Flurina and Gianni Paravicini – Ear Lights, Eye Sounds. Expanded Cracked Everyday Electronics


Edizioni Periferia, ISBN: 978-3906016283, English, 272 pages, 2014, Switzerland

This is a monograph of the Swiss musician Andy Guhl whose career began in the seventies with free improve, before embracing electronics until, in 1983, he eliminated any classic instrument in favour of what he called “cracked everyday electronics” with his band Voice Crack. This practice incorporates the use of radios, turntables, transmitters, dictating machines and other items, cracked open and manipulated through gestures and light, in an ante-litteram circuit-bending. This book embraced the challenge to properly embody this kind of practice and content in its design, winning the Swiss Design Award. First there is a clear division between left pages, filled with visuals, and the right pages where the text is included. Even if the text is subaltern to the preponderant visuals, and is split into small chunks, it is still perfectly legible. Of note in the publication are 100 reproductions of Guhl’s “Colliding Sediments” works; stills from the audiovisual performance THE INSTRUMENT; as well as images from concerts, original sketches and illustrations. Consistent with the fragile nature of the instruments at the core of his practice, the book is printed on a special type of paper which is sensitive to touch, easily scratching or slightly deteriorating, perfectly archiving in a unique way the spirit of Guhl’s work.