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Eleanor Beale

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My practice is focused on the creation of audio compositions, from which I sometimes create installations and videos, constructing visual vessels that mirror the sound’s form, extending it into the physical.

The complexities between landscape and memory, city and pastoral environments, societal and personal nostalgia, and naturalness and authenticity are the driving stimuli for my research and practice.

Writing lyric allows me to digest my surroundings, feelings, and thoughts. Accompanying this process, I collect sounds with a recording device, permitting a transportable research process to capture fleeting moments within city, pastoral landscapes and my immediate environment. Combined with local generators of sound, such as my body, computer and
family members, I employ traditional and personal sound making techniques. These include recording my mother’s breath down her clarinet and instrumental harmonics, used not for functional melodic tone but their limits as objects.

Collating these different processes into compositions, I create moments of order and disorder. By interrupting the calm of natural landscapes with bursts of intimacy and awkward mechanical cityscape sounds, while intercepting birdsong with frantic instruments, I consider these, as a whole, also laments, personally, mourning the loss of childhood and societally, the apparent loss of what is ‘natural’. Landscapes, as external spaces and emotive internal ones, are important visual and figurative metaphors applied when constructing audio, installation and considering context. I question what constitutes a ‘natural’ landscape and a ‘natural’ sound?

The works serve as metaphors for personal, childhood longing but also, societally, the desire to use past, simpler times as influence for future progress. Looking backward, romantically, to pave a clearer path forward. Both expressions of rose-tinted ideals and intangible, pseudo-nostalgic longing, the soundscapes permeate temporal boundaries. Forming impossible auditory landscapes, the sounds become metaphors to express the distance between reality and the past.

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