On Crafting A Sonic City: Treasuring Every Sound And Moment

In the afternoon of Sunday 20.11, VFCD audiences had the chance to meet the creative pair of Officine Gặp and HUM at the talk on their project “Crafting a Sonic City” that they have been working on.

During the talk, the members of the team presented numerous fresh and interesting ideas and perspectives on sounds in the city. The end goal of the project is to convey a message on sonic landscape preservation to policymakers, urban planners and the community.

On the values of sounds, two team members from Officine Gặp – Afra Rebuscini and Yuri Frassi said: “The combination of sound is a part of a city. However, usually policy makers, architects, urban designers want to cancel sound and noise as something disturbing or annoying. We want to reframe the concept of noise as memory, identity, intangible heritage, material, culturally charged, indicator of a city”.

For Officine Gặp, the vision of the project is to seek an alternative approach in urban design and development. With the speed of development today, it is extremely difficult to use the traditional approach in building the city; and the feasible solution might be to apply arts and creativity.

Talking about his journey recording and processing sounds for the exhibition, HUM’s Marco Yanes recalled various interesting experiences: “During the recordings, I felt like a small insect entering everyone’s life silently and capturing unique moments of everyday life. I did not want to disrupt their activities, just an observer and us my observations as the ‘feeding ground’ for my work in the studio”.

Marco said: “Normally, in our life now, we are used to live with visual, visual, visual so we forget about how to listen sound. But to hear and to focus on what’s going on is something that really changes your perspective and your emotions”. When Marco was recording, he realised many sounds that he never heard before, which he then amplified and processed to make them even more magnificent. After two weeks of the exhibition in Hanoi and Saigon, visitors all enjoy powerful emotions in the experience that let them immerse in sounds created by the group.

The discussion at the end of the talk was a dynamic space, as all the participants have a close connection with the topic of urban sounds and thereby had many interesting questions for Officine Gặp and HUM.

When asked what separates sound from noise, the team replied that while this differentiation was usually done by measuring sound intensity in quantitative measures, they wanted to do this in a qualitative way. A noise is a noise when it disturbs you, and different people see different things as noise. Noise pollution is a concept that policymakers use to manage sounds; but they have not noticed that removing sounds also means removing a cultural characteristic of a place.

If you have anything you would like to share or suggest for the event, leave your feedback here: https://bit.ly/3tIP7a


Nguyệt Cầm