Home > Bibliography > Bibliography (English) > Organised Sound (1996-) > Vol. 11, No. 1. 2006 > Sonic memory material as ‘pathetic trigger’

Voegelin, Salomé

Sonic memory material as ‘pathetic trigger’


Thursday 30 November 2006, by Rob Weale

Memory, according to Henri Bergson, is gleaned from the present and realises the present perception from its sensory-motor elements through movements towards that which it perceives. The purpose of this article is to propose and debate the deliberate use of such ‘present memory’ in the sonic artwork. The suggestion is that sonic memory material – sounds that are plundered from old recordings – can be collaged into complex sonic works to produce, not a nostalgic experience in the sense of a recognition of the past, but a current production of sonic material in a continually present perception. Such a production strategy employs the affective quality of memory to ‘trigger’ a sensorial engagement in the sense of a ‘pathetic’ engagement understood as an emotional and sentimental involvement with the work. The understanding is that such an emotional engagement involves the listener centrally in the production of the artwork and challenges modernist (visual) art discourses, which evaluate the work from a distance.

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