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UAL Research Online

'Your Favourite Beijing Sounds' and 'Beijing Sonic Bicycle Ride'

Cusack, Peter (2005) 'Your Favourite Beijing Sounds' and 'Beijing Sonic Bicycle Ride'. [Art/Design Item]

Type of Research: Art/Design Item
Creators: Cusack, Peter

In January 2005, the British Council commissioned four UK-based sound artists and musicians – Brian Eno, David Toop, Clive Bell and Peter Cusack – to create work in response to Beijing as a city, for the project 'Sound and the City: Beijing'. The brief was to explore the city’s sounds and locations during a reconnaissance, and then to propose new site-specific sound work for realisation during a return visit.

After a period of initial investigation, the researcher decided to develop 'Your Favourite Beijing Sounds' and 'Beijing Sonic Bicycle Ride'.

'Your Favourite Beijing Sounds' was aimed at uncovering Beijinger’s attitudes to their acoustic environment. One of its manifestations was a competition, launched through the internet under the auspices of the British Council, that invited Bejingers to nominate their favourite sound and to relate an associated story. The researcher coordinated the recording of a selection of nominated sounds, gave workshops at the Beijing Conservatory and the Central Academy of Fine Arts, and contributed to discussions about acoustic ecology with the designers of the 2008 Olympic Park. 'Your Favourite Beijing Sounds' was shown at the City Museum in Beijing as part of its inaugural exhibition in January 2006 and released as a CD by KwanYin Records in 2007.

'Beijing Sonic Bicycle Ride' focused on Beijing’s bicycles and their ubiquitous sampling loudhailers used by street vendors to advertise their wares. Eight loudhailers were attached to eight bicycles and used to play specially composed sounds as they were cycled around an older Beijing district. The eight layers of sound were designed to be heard separately or to harmonise when brought together and to blend with the local soundscape. Listeners could follow on their own bikes or stay in one place. The project was analysed by the researcher in the bilingual Sound and the City publication, which also included an 8’ 30” recording.

Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > London College of Communication
Research Centres/Networks > Creative Research into Sound Arts Practice (CRiSAP)
Date: 2005
Funders: British Council
Related Websites: http://www.britishcouncil.org/china-arts-music-satc.htm, http://www.britishcouncil.org/china-arts-music-satc_pc.htm, http://www.bikebeijing.com/bikerentalsounds.htm, http://www.lcc.arts.ac.uk/60688.htm
Related Websites:
Locations / Venues:
LocationFrom DateTo Date
Beijing Capital Museum, Beijing, China.2005
Date Deposited: 04 Dec 2009 13:34
Last Modified: 02 Sep 2010 15:56
Item ID: 1276
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/1276

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