SOUND AND RURAL ARCHITECTURE FESTIVAL
9 a 29 April 2012
Gralheira Mountain Range, São Pedro do Sul (PT)

Artistic creation residencies >  Experimental architecture residencies > media and sound installations in architectural structures >  Field meetings with artists, architects and anthropologists > Community driven activities > Educational activities > Conferences

Participants:

Artists in residence:

James Wyness (UK)
Antonio Della Marina (IT)
Alessandra Zucchi (IT)
Luís Costa (PT)
Lisa Premke (DE)
Perri Lynch (U.S.)
Johanna Hällsten (SE/UK)
Manuela Barile (IT/EN)
UVBA Collective (PT)

Architects in residence:

Maria Carlos Valverde (PT)
Ana Costa (PT)
Zoraima de Figueiredo (PT)
Pedro Silva (PT)
Silvia Jorge (PT)

Anthropologist in residence:

Ana Saraiva (PT)

Credits:

Production: Binaural / Nodar
Funded by the Government of Portugal | Secretary of State for Culture | Director General of the Arts

General Coordination: Luís Costa
Artistic Director: Manuela Barile
Architecture Coordinator:  Maria Carlos Valverde
Production Support: Carina Martins

Sound and space form an important pair in our everyday environment: no sound exists outside of space and no space is really silent. Sound and space mutually reinforce one another in our perception, the qualities of a space affect how we perceive the sound and a sound affects how we perceive space. In short, space and sound are inseparable in our experience of what is to exist in the world.

Similarly, there is clear evidence of the importance of sound in ancient sacred sites, which have been documented by anthropologists. The sounds were probably an important part of rituals, by the way they affected the human body and brain function. Many of the ancient holy sites were built in stone, which, by means of their geological qualities or disposition in space, generated particular acoustic effects of reverberation or echo. These types of phenomena are studied in the field of acoustic archeology.

It is fair to say that the specific case of rural areas highlights the profound connection between landscape, architecture and sound. On the one hand, the countryside is largely an anthropological and architectural landscape, transformed by a myriad of utilitarian constructions, many of them centuries-old: grain mills, olive oil mills, irrigation canals, houses, threshing floor, wells, community laundry places, granaries, mines, stone walls, chapels, churches, bandstands, streets, alleys, squares, farmlands, roads, etc.. Moreover, many of the rural buildings have an acoustic specificity, so it is possible to recognize the architectural typology by listening to these places.

SOUND AND RURAL ARCHITECTURE FESTIVAL will explore possible interactions between landscape, architecture and sound in the rural context of the Gralheira Mountain Range, municipality of São Pedro do Sul (Portugal). The festival will host artistic projects that will acoustically “activate”  different types of rural buildings, through the creation of installations and sound sculptures in specific context, in parallel with experimental architecture projects and anthropological field work, that will all together help to understand aspects of specificity and identity associated with the built environment, and will speculate on potential uses for the local rural architecture, much of it in a state of abandonment.

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