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Database of Finnish sound art



SOUND ART BANK, is a new Finnish resource for new and current sound art. Sound Art Bank is a database administrated by Artists’ Association MUU. At the SAB website you can get acquainted with artists and their works and listen to sound art tracks. You can also purchase tracks from the Sound Art Bank web shop.

SOUND ART BANK is a new online database in Finland, which collects and archives professional Sound Art. At SAB you can listen to Sound Art, explore background information on the artists and their works. SAB also collects and shares information on current Sound Art Performances, Concerts and Sound Exhibitions. As a way of helping artists, SAB has a web shop where high quality tracks and sound related items are easily distributed and sold.

SAB is a meeting place for artists, curators and other experts as well as potential buyers of Sound Art. In the future SAB will be a valuable research tool and a snapshot of contemporary Sound Art, and will showcase the changing appearance of the impermanent and transient medium of Sound.

The newly opened SAB features a limited number of Sound Artists, but will include 100 artists and their works by the end of the year. It will grow into an active community, where the users can find the latest news and different genres within Sound Art.

Long-term archiving of sound art

The works uploaded to SAB will later be archived in the National Library of Finland. One of the main tasks of the National Library is to serve researchers and archive material for research use. The National Library’s music section has already gathered a good amount of sound art literature, including material on sonic landscapes and other sound art research.

SAB uses Wordpress content management system and after the artists have registered, they can access their own profile pages and easily update their content. The latest tracks and sound related material submitted on the website will be visible on the front page. SAB also has a search engine which enables the audience to easy find works either by genre, format, content, metadata or other search parameters.

Sound art as a whole is a very extensive field that connects with many other mediums. A sound art piece can be, for example, a sonic sculpture, a concert, radio art or a live performance.

The documentation and archiving of sound art are especially important, since often a sound art piece exists only in the moment in which it is performed, unlike video art which can be presented multiple times, or music, which can be transcribed into notation.

Academic interest towards sound art has in recent years grown, as well as the number of sound art galleries. For example in Helsinki there are several galleries focusing on sound art, such as Akusmata, A Listening Room, Third Space and Vuorikaiku sound gallery.

ZirkOSC 3 plugin for Zirkonium



The Groupe de Recherche en Immersion Spatiale (GRIS) from the Faculty of Music of University of Montreal has just announced ZirkOSC version 3, a plugin for multiphonic 3D spatial sound.

The ZirkOSC3 is a plugin (AU and VST formats) designed to control the Zirkonium MKII from any compatible audio sequencer on a Mac. It allows the user to spatialize the sound in 3D under a dome of speakers. As its name implies, it sends Open Sound Control (OSC) data to the Zirkonium. The ZirkOSC3 is not an audio plugin, it only sends and receives data between two applications. The audio itself is sent from the DAW to the Zirkonium through Jack.

The Zirkonium MKII was developed at the Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie (ZKM) in Karlsruhe (Germany). It is based on the Vector Base Amplitude Panning (VBAP) algorithm developed in Helsinki by Ville Pulkki.

New in Version 3:

  • New coloured interface
  • Writing automation to source 1 only even in the grouped modes (previously, the automation of 8 sources was written). Other sources are slaves of the source No. 1.
  • New trajectories and new parameters of existing trajectories
  • Ability to use only portion of trajectories: semicircle for example (Turn parameter)
  • Ability to determine the starting and ending points of the trajectories
  • Trace temporary trajectories
  • Integration of the joystick and the Leap Motion
  • Otherwise, everything is faster and more reliable.

ZirkOSC3 is an open source plugin available with a very important manual (English only) on SourceForge:

Workshop in Trondheim



Last week I was in Trondheim, giving a workshop for students at the art academy. I have been teaching at the music technology study in Trondheim several times before, but this was the first workshop that I have been giving at the art academy.

The workshop followed a similar trajectory to the workshop I did in Kristiansand last fall, splitting the days into three. One session would present the history of experimental music and sound art. The next session was an introduction to audio editing in Reaper. This time I captured these sessions as screencasts, and made them available to the students. And thanks to the many brilliant screencasts that Kenny Gioia has been provided at the Reaper website they have plenty of materials for further learning. The last part of the day would be set aside for work on the students own projects.

One of the day we went to Heimdal to see and discuss how I worked on sound in this exhibition, a collaboration with Jeremy Welsh and Jon Arne Mogstad. The final day we went to Trondheim kunstmuseum to see and hear the sound installation by Jana Winderen that is part of the Lorck Schive Art Prize Exhibition.


Afternoons were spent dining and discussing with Piya, my former colleague from BEK. Saturday we did a visit to Jon Arne’s studio, seeing new paintings that he is currently working on, and doing some paint geeking. We also got to see Kaia Hugin’s work at Rake Visningsrom, curated by Jeremy. An interesting space, and a strong work.


At Jon Arne Mogstad’s studio, with Piya


This is one of the works that emerged during the workshop, SONARK03 by Anders S. Solberg.

Podcast Interview


Last week Darwin Grosse did a skype inteview with me for his Art + Music + Technology podcast series. The interview is online here.

Ximena Alarcón : Research visit and artist talk



The artist and researcher Ximena Alarcón from CRISAP (Creative Research in Sound Arts Practice) visits BEK in week 7. Friday February 19 she will give an artist talk, presenting her artistic practise, and also discuss her ongoing work on ‘Sound Matters: a framework for the creative use and re-use of sound’.

For the remaining of the week she will be working with me on how to create interfaces for accessing archives of sound, such as archives of field or speech recordings. Together they will explore the possibility of utilising Jamoma for this, in preparation for further research relating to the “Sound Matters” framework.


Ximena Alarcón is an artist who engages in listening to migratory spaces, connecting this to individual and collective memories. Her practice involves deep listening, sonic improvisation, and the creation of screen-based interfaces for relational listening that expand our sense of belonging and place. She is interested in creating telematic performances, derived from listening in interstitial spaces, such as dreams, underground transportation, and the ‘in-between’ space in the context of migration. She completed a PhD in Music, Technology and Innovation, from De Montfort University, and received a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship 2007-2009, which led to the creation of ‘Sounding Underground’. She gained a Deep Listening Teaching Certificate in 2012, and is currently a tutor for the Deep Listening Training Program at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Since 2011 she has been Research Fellow at Creative Research in Sound Arts Practice (CRiSAP), based at the London College of Communication, where she has developed ‘Networked Migrations’. In 2015 she launched with Cathy Lane the first stage of a JISC funded project ‘Sound Matters: a framework for the creative use and re-use of sound’, which explores the creation of interfaces for interrogation and relational playback of Field Recordings and Speech.

Her visit to BEK is funded by an Erasmus grant.


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