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Phragmites australis / Paragon Studios Project Space (PS2)
2011-2016
10″ sound on loop (headphones), text / accelerometer, 4 speakers

Residency at Paragon Project Studio Project (Ps2), Belfast, June 2016

Phragmites australis Phragmites australis resulted from a durational exploration of a part of the river towpath in the Lagan Meadows Reserve, Belfast. It is not far from my house. I have consistently recorded this location over the course of six months, from November 2011 to May 2012, with three main intentions: firstly, to articulate the experience of place through sound; secondly, to understand if I could reveal the landscape changing over time through sound, by exploring the materiality of a small element in the landscape; and lastly, how to negotiate the project’ materials in their final presentation, making the site of recording and the site of presentation inextricably linked.My attention turned towards sounds that entail a rich sphere of information about the environment, but are on the verge of perception. The Phragmites australis (common reed) seemed an interesting surface to explore. Not only is it a predominant species in the landscape, but also, once triggered by the wind, the reeds reveal a rich, wide and ever-changing range of textures, timbres and dynamics, impossible to perceive with the naked ear alone.

The tangle of reeds is found at the beginning of the Lagan towpath, separating the river from the path. The chosen location, however, seemed slightly more protected from the strong winds than other places where the reeds also grow. As such, the wind was not as strong as in other areas. It was also a place where people stop to feed the ducks, which could trigger interesting situations and interactions.