The Research Networking Day provides a platform to exchange ideas and experiences for students and researchers from different European graduate and postgraduate programmes traversing the fields of audio, arts, media, design and related theoretical disciplines. A yearly initiative co-organised with Humboldt University’s Department of Musicology, the RND sought submissions from students, junior researchers and persons pursuing higher levels of research and studies to present projects and findings connected to the CTM 2019 Persistence Theme.
The third module within the 2019 Research Networking Day is hosted by Dr Anita Jóri, who is scientific supervisor and research associate at Vilém Flusser Archive, Berlin University of the Arts (Universität der Künste Berlin, UdK). Her research and publications focus on the linguistic (discursive and terminological) aspects of electronic (dance) music culture. She studied applied linguistics and history and recently finished her PhD thesis, “The discourse community of electronic dance music.”
Researching Women Making Experimental Musics and Sound Arts in the Middle East: Starting Points
Jilliene Sellner (University of Sussex, DE)
This presentation suggests a starting point of conversation at a very early stage in my research. I hope to address the persistence of women making sound in (seemingly) precarious situations, in particular the Middle East, and how we (Europeans/North Americans) can act as (intersectional) allies across regions and languages without reiterating implicit biases or colonial histories. I will present my research methodology, which is a practice based collaborative musicological framework as both epistemological and practical; reciprocity and facilitating on my part in addition to research and creative collaboration with women sound artists in the Middle Eastern region.
Jilliene Sellner is a UK-based Canadian sound artist beginning a PhD with the working title: Performing Agency: Women, Networks, and Experimental Music and Sound in Cairo, Tehran, and Beirut. Her research explores electroacoustic, experimental music, and sonic arts made by women in or born in the Middle East in an attempt to understand associated challenges, strengths, and networks within and outside of that region, and to what extent this music or sound arts subverts, reconfigures, or replicates normative social, cultural, and political agency.
Aude Gouaux-Langlois (UdK Berlin University of the Arts, FR/DE)
Questioning the perception of the gendered voice in the field of performance, this thesis shows how parts of Western society influence the human experience of one’s voice, and discusses the practice of vocal performance as a way to transcend societal constraints. Society puts pressure on people to fulfill certain roles. We must project our identity through our voice. I argue that female and male markers are merely constructions that aim to control the voice and fit it into certain structures (gender norms), and that we shouldn’t underestimate the power of the voice to transcend them. I argue that taking steps to free the voice from societal pressures can give a person the courage to harness the power of their own voice.Technological tools enable the voice to be captured and changed into electrical signal that can be altered: vocal processing encourages the development of a vocal aesthetic that is individualised and with which the artist can identify. In the performance setting, the amplified and altered voice is then a truly individual chosen tool that can be used to make one’s voice heard in a shared experience. How can we find our own path using our voice? By using our own minds to open up the possibility of retraining the voice for greater self-expression; to reach new authentic heights in our own identity, and explore an honest and open connection to our own bodies; and finally, to allow a greater and more honest intimacy with another person.
Aude Gouaux-Langlois is a composer, musician, and sound artist based in Berlin. After a Bachelor in Music and Musicology at Paris-Sorbonne, she received a Masters in Sound Studies with distinction at the UdK Berlin University of Arts in August 2018. Her musical projects include collaborations from indie-pop to avant-garde electronic music. Aude has also written artist interviews for Berlin’s Kaltblut Magazine and Polaroid Originals. Her latest sonic projects combine technology, field recordings, and guitar, with a strong emphasis on the human voice.
Distorted Sound Waves from Mexico City to Berlin
Catharina Rüß (University of Paderborn / University of the Arts in Bremen, DE)
During the last 15 years, research in interdisciplinary Cultural Studies highlighted the growing significance of space as a fluid and dynamic concept. Whereas many contemporary approaches show the hybrid, transient, and transitory aspects of cultural practices, in this work the emphasis lies on the value of continuity, especially the continuity of female art and music as counterpoints against arbitrary restrictions. In an era where borders are rebuilt, and authoritarian regimes, hegemonic ideas, and gender stereotypes become ever more popular, it is important to point out the fragility and also the durability of attempts and practices to preserve free rooms of maneuver.
Based on ethnographic research and interviews with female musicians and sound artists from Tijuana, Guadalajara, and Mexico City, this survey demonstrates how women in Mexico express their own voice with constant performances in an international field of alternative/ electronic/ experimental music. When they play in urban clubs in Mexico, the United States, or Europe, they usually constitute their sonic works in a complex area of discourses. Their performances are synaesthetic events: atmospheres which are based on a three-dimensional texture of sound, body-fashion-materiality, and space. In this multilayered sphere the women are usually confronted with many expectations, polyphonic feedbacks, hegemonic hierarchies, and interactions with co-musicians, organizers, and audience. The goal of this lecture is to show differences and similarities between artistic groups and actors in Mexico and Europe as effects of transnational connections. These actors are determined by imbalances of power, and in the meantime share and negotiate values as equals amongst equals.
Dr. Catharina Rüß is a lecturer for Fashion and Cultural Studies at the University of Paderborn and the University of Arts in Bremen. She studied German Language and Literature, Museumsmanagement, and Cultural Anthropologies with a focus on garments and youth cultures, and worked as a student scientific assistant at the Institute for German Literature of the University of Hamburg and in the Altonaer Museum. From 2008– 2018 she was a lecturer for Fashion Studies in Hannover and Berlin. In 2016 she finished her Ph.D. thesis on "Fashion and Coolness in Novels and Essays of the Weimar Republic." Her research interests include literature, fashion, postcolonial studies, and pop/ sound/ music cultures.
Dr Anita Jóri is scientific supervisor and research associate at Vilém Flusser Archive, BerlinUniversity of the Arts (Universität der Künste Berlin, UdK).