Crack in the City is a project dedicated to create mobile sound installations/actions reflected to public space. The urban everyday life is completely surrounded by various kind of sounds, yet, it is not necessary that we are continuously acknowledging, or even hearing them. The project’s aim is to bring an experiential artistic activity to our auditory everyday life, in order to expand our understanding of public space itself, its sound with aesthetic qualities and beyond.
The project’s theme was developed through the abstracted method of Kintsugi (golden joinery), which is used for repairing cracks on a pottery in Japan. The gap is restored with gold-filled lacquer, rather than the invisible glues used in the West, this technique is used to accentuate the cracks. It is considered that the value of mended pottery by this method is higher than the original one, as well as containing more interesting landscape. The word landscape (Keshiki in Japanese, also means a view) represents the surface of a pottery, and it has been recognised an object of appreciation. When one enjoys the beauty of a pottery, and uses the word as, “The cup has a beautiful landscape”. The project is about finding cracks in the city, a crack can be understood e.g a literal crack on a street or a building, besides a personal, a historical, a social crack, etc. Then, attempt to restore it with sound conceptually, explore the aesthetic means of repair. Thereby with number of works altogether, it appears a soundscape.
A first edition of this project was developed in a course at University at the Arts, Berlin led by Daisuke Ishida during summer semester 2014. For locus sonus Mobile Audio Fest 2015 we want to develop the project further by expanding our existing works which we prototyped and tested at a public intervention at Hermannplatz Berlin in July 2014.
A “Crack in the City” can be found in malls. In order to scare away young people from hanging around, extremely high frequencies are being played. Whereas young people can hear these sounds and feel disturbed by them, the average customer is not affected by it. “Music for teenagers and (other) Rats” is taking up on this idea and giving it a twist. It is a mobile soundsystem dedicated to music in the frequency range between 16kHz and 20kHz. Thus, sounds are exclusively composed and played for teenagers, whereas they remain unperceivable for adult people. Teenagers (and other Rats) are treated as an audience and not as mischiefs, with an exclusive ability to listen.
Crack in the City, Hermannplatz, Berlin, July 29 2014.