Musica to host first Sounds Now Curating Lab

Musica, Impulse Centre for Music, is hosting its first Curating Lab within the framework of Sounds Now.

Developed by Christine Eyene, the Curating Lab will take Pelt (Belgium) as a point of departure, and its position as border municipality, neighbouring Germany and the Netherlands, to explore the notion of ‘man-made’ or ‘unnatural’ borders. It will consider nature as a porous or permeable environment and a collective reconciliatory space.

Although Belgium is a country whose capital is home to a ‘borderless’ continent, freedom of movement remains a relative concept when approached from the perspective of displacement and migratory histories. This has been accentuated by the context of the global pandemic, which has dramatically limited the movement of people both locally and internationally.

The Curating Lab will envision sonic memory as an anchorage to histories and places, like a score one carries within oneself, through life and migratory journeys. These sonic anchors are also imagined repositories from which one draws comfort and healing in times of uncertainty. Domestic space will also be considered as a new territory, where extended periods of lockdown have created a new relation to sound within the private sphere.

The project will also examine how sonic experiences in new territories contribute to the formation of new identities and how, conversely, new identities transform sonic landscapes; not just in terms of the aural but also in ways that address forgotten or silenced voices, and in doing so, contribute to social change.

The programme will include a workshop led by Christine Eyene with local community groups with the aim of facilitating the emergence of new voices, diversity representation, and new forms of agency in the field of arts and culture. The groups will be actively involved in the creation and curation of two new commissions by Paris-based South African artist and DJ Mo Laudi, and Berlin-based Cameroonian artist Elsa M’bala. The lab will be filmed by Brussels and Hamburg-based South African artist Megan-Leigh Heilig, who will create an artistic documentation of the workshop.

The new sound pieces will be presented, together with the participants, on 29 May at 14:00, in the form of sound installations as part of the opening of the Klankenbos Spring Expo (29/05 – 06/06) (www.klankenbos.be).

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