This proposal explores alternative notions of intimacy and encounter by playing with presence, absence, and unconventional ways of communication and exchange through the modes of sound, listening, and bodily movement. The idea was developed in reaction to isolation and social distancing during the first wave of COVID-19, but is also inspired by continuous advances in communication technologies (particularly their ability to convey an illusion of proximity in disembodied encounters). Through exploring the possibilities of embodied communication within a networked digital environment, while excluding pictures and verbal language, nineteen artists from around the world produced sound messages created only by their voices. Sound scores accompanying this proposal have been composed from this collection of abstract sound expressions.
By inviting artists who are not singers or musicians to produce something audible—something that they might not be necessarily good at or used to doing—the project tries to break away from conventional forms of communication, allowing participants too, to make mistakes or deviate from the usual or expected. You are invited to listen to, and react upon the scores using your body and movement. This can be done by moving in any way that for you is an organic response to the sounds that you are hearing. If stillness is preferably for you, that is also an option. Maybe movements that are not predictably “beautiful”, synchronous or supported by familiar beats might encourage us to connect to our vulnerability that is always implicit in our attempts at being intimate with others.
In the compositions you can hear voices from: Adina Camhy, Sarah Brabo-Durand, Sascha Brosamer, Gen Takahashi, Kim V. Goldsmith, Bangjoo Kim, Gabriel Hensche, Lucija Barišić, Veza Fernandez, Benoît Roullet-Renoleau, Niccolò Moronato, Abdul Qadir, Richard Luke Benson, Ira Ferris, Lorenzo Rotini, and Roko Crnić. Composed by Petra Mrša.
The work was made on the invitation from the Museum of contemporary art Zagreb and was supported by the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia.
The performance was realized in 2021, at the Museum of contemporary art Zagreb.
The work was published as a part of the collection of games & exercises How to love many in many ways by Engy Mohsen and Gabriel Hensche. How to love many in many ways brings together nine contributors; Eliana Otta, Eleonora Toniolo, Ingo Niermann (The Army of Love), Mohamed Al-Bakeri, Petra Mrša, Philip Ullrich, Rania Atef, Raúl Hott, Shahd Omar.
Photo credits: Christian Taranto