A salvaged double cassette player mechanism is adapted to become a sound making instrument
Motors from discarded technological products are repurposed in this collection of kinetic sound and light works in response to Planned Obsolescence
A collection of projects themed on causing and retaining material traces of sonic activity through analogue and mechanical means
AIR Niederösterreich, Krems an der Donau, Austria - October-November
Invited as artist -in-residence by Klangraum Krems I will further develop Channeling for public presentation, as well as give a sound awareness workshop for childrens as part of the Kinder.Kunst.Fest (Children Art Festival); participate in a commission organised by Grünrekorder; make an online presentation for Situated Sounds in Toronto, Canada; and present the results of the residency in person in: Brno (Czechia), Vienna and Linz (Austria) and Bratislava (Slovakia).
"Rural Mental" commission for Binaural Nodar, Alva, Castro Daire, Portugal - September
I was one of five international artists invited by Binaural Nodar to respond to and create work inspired by the rural village of Alva in the Videu region of Portugal. Over three weeks of site visits and research into the use of salvaged motors and locally sourced clay I investigated how the water and sound energy of various springs and fountains in Alva could be transduced and translated as material traces, as part of my Traceable Echoes research.
The results became a collection of five ceramic tiles, each with a different pattern drawn by a stylus that the sound of the water activated. The title came from an exclamation during the presentation to the community - A Escrita das Fontes - which literally translates as 'the writing of the fountains'.
Witte Rook, Breda, The Netherlands - May-July
This residency period was devoted to 'Channeling' which began in Switzerland with Ferme-Asile, in which I continue to use found and donated devices, activating them with environmental sound recordings. The aim was to develop and refine this approach as a live performance presentation.
The first stage was carried out remotely in Marseille, collecting sounds and materials, and meeting the team of Witte Rook and many artists based in The Netherlands online. Then during the second stage I was onsite in Breda developing the project with new sounds and devices and presenting the results at Witte Rook and also in Den Haag, both of which received very positive feedback.
Ferme-Asile, Sion, Switzerland - March-April
During a two month residency at Ferme-Asile I developed a further collection of Made to Malfunction devices, this time improvising more with the structure and shape of the mechanism itself, making differing sized works and combining them in various ways.
The aim was to make a collection that could be presented together, but also as standalone pieces, and can even be divided and individual works can be made available for sale.
The second month was more focused on using obsolete devices as sound-making elements of a live performance, with the motors being activated by sound recordings gathered in the local area - mostly of the River Rhône.
The project can be viewed here.
Yarmonics 2020, Great Yarmouth, UK - April-Present
The video work (R)ASSEMBLE was presented as part of the online festival from 26th September 2020.
The subsequent sound piece is available on my Bandcamp page here.
Commissioned by the Yarmonics Festival to develop a new sound work, the organisers sent a collection of found objects and sounds to my current studio in Marseille, France where I used them in various combinations to make small installations that changed or generated sound, documenting the results with video and audio recordings.
The project page for (R)ASSEMBLE can be viewed HERE where further showings at ONKAF Gallery, New Delhi, India and Atelier Hyph, Marseille, France are also included.
subnet, Hallein, Austria - September-October
Austrian arts organisation subnet invited me to participate in their residency programme of 2020, in which they were given spaces and support by Schmiede20 festival in Hallein. The project had to be carried out remotely from Marseille, France because of COVID-19 related travel issues.
A new sound-making device was developed using a salvaged liquid cooling system designed for game-specific computer systems, various microphones and Arduino programming. The signals of the microphones were controlled by automated envelopes in Ableton Live software to create a shifting and evolving piece. The project page can be viewed HERE
Atelier Expérimental, Clans, France - September
Throughout the first two weeks of September I participated in a two week residency in the tiny mountain village of Clans, France, organised and run by Isabelle Sordage. During the residency I discovered a way of running both a stepper motor and a DC motor using Arduino and explored more ways of working with the double cassette mechanism. Project page can be viewed here
Lockdown Activity, Marseille, France - March-May
Although many projects were cancelled or postponed, I was fortunate to be a recipient of an Emergency Grant from Arts Council England to subsidise my losses. With the grant I invested in a high quality camera to enable me to document projects much better.
I took the opportunity to use it while developing a sound making instrument from a salvaged double cassette player mechanism, with a view to performing live with it at some point in the future.
Palbok Factory of Contemporary Art, Jeonju, South Korea - October-December
I was one of two foreign artists selected to participate in the residency programme at Palbok FoCA in Jeonju, South Korea. The residency is situated in a site that used to be an audio cassette manufacturing plant.
Through the project 'Unproductive', exhibited in December 2019 at FoCA, I investigated investigate ways of combining sound recording and playback techniques with the Arduino programming and electronics experienced gained through developing the work "Made to Malfunction".
Please visit the project page here.
GreenLightDistrict Festival 2019, Telemark, Norway - 14th September 2019
I returned to Skien to perform the piece developed from a short research residency in April 2019 as part of GreenLightDistrict Festival 2019. The other artists and I performed our responsive works on a boat that took the audience from Skien to Skotfoss, where most of the material was recorded.
OFFcity, Pardubice, Czechia - June
During a short residency with OFFcity I developed a public but intimate sound performance to be listened to through headphones.
Please visit the dedicated project page here.
Reservoir Space Festival, Schwartzwald (Black Forest), Germany - June
Commission to spend 2 weeks in Villingen-Schwenningen to make a site-specific performance and give a hydrophone building workshop for the first edition of Reservoir Space Festival.
France tour 2019 - June
I was invited to perform at the esteemed Instants Chavirés in Montreuil, Paris, France by La Fabrique Agitée and so arranged a short tour following this to perform at Apo33, Nantes and DAda, Toulouse.
Composed during a Storm - March
Solo exhibition 22 March - 12 April 2019, Redbase, Sewon, Yogyakarta, Indonesia.
During a one month residency with Redbase, Simon combined Arduino technology and acoustic sounding techniques with recordings of the frequent thunderstorms to bring the weather inside the gallery space.
Made to Malfunction - February
Solo Exhibition 12-21 February 2019 of kinetic sound and light work developed at ACC.
Hosted by Openarts Space Merge, Busan, South Korea as a solo exhibition, with opening event performances by Ryu Hankil and myself.
Made to Malfunction, Asia Culture Center, Gwangju, South Korea
Simon Whetham was selected to participate in the Creators in Lab residency with the renowned Asia Culture Center of South Korea. During the project he developed a collection of kinetic sound and light emitting objects using salvaged technology and Arduino programming.
'Made to Malfunction' is a response to planned obsolescence, re-presenting parts of discarded machines and devices as valuable art objects.
The work was exhibited 12-23 December 2018 as part of the Creators in Lab Showcase at ACC.
The Beginners, Fife, Scotland
Continuing a collaborative project that began with the artists recording improvised harp with the dawn chorus ['The Clearing' released through Grünrekorder], Rebecca Joy Sharp and Simon Whetham visited sites of ancient ruins in Fife in 2016. Two years later they revisited the sites to experience them for a second time and to record Rebecca reciting the text she wrote at the sites and following the first visits.
Place is the Space, Hamburg, Germany
A collaboration arranged and organised by Gregory Büttner, funded by Freie und Hansestadt Hamburg, Behörde für Kultur und Medien and supported by Probebühne im Gängeviertel and MOM Art Space im Gängeviertel, with extra support from Michael Münnich of Fragment Factory.
Over the course of 3 weeks Gregory and Simon created an installation/intervention, responding first to the Probebühne and then translating their work to MOM Art Space for a final sound performance presentation on 16 August 2018.
Please visit the project page here
Pulzus Art Camp, Transylvania, Romania
By kind invitation from Berze Imre, organiser of Pulzus Art Camp, Simon spent 10 days in Odorheiu, Transylvania, Romania making 2 site-responsive works. The region is well-known for timber processing, so with supporting contributions from local artist Kolumban-Antal Jozsef, Simon for 'Wind in the Willow' adapted a pair of ear defenders to play the sound of tree branches in the wind through solid pieces of wood. For 'Saw Heard' three circular saw blades resonate with the sound of sawing, playing soft musical sounds from each.
To view images of the works and for more information, please click here
Copper Leg, Vaskjala, Estonia
In June and July Simon collaborated with residency organiser Janno Bergmann at Copper Leg Artist Residency, Vaskjala, Estonia to make the outdoor artwork 'Force Mineure'. They took an abandoned Riga piano, placing it in the grounds of the residency house, and set up a number of ways in which natural forces would play the strings of the piano.
Please visit the project page here
Château de Sacy, Sacy-le-Petit, France
Simon was one of two artists to be selected to join the residency programme at Château de Sacy, Sacy-le-Petit, Picardie, France. During the month of May he developed 3 distinct projects: 'The Impossible Tree' which combined a multi-channel sound installation with a nature art improvisation; 'Elemental Paintings' continued his research into methods of retaining a physical trace of a sound using wind, water, earth and the sun; 'Record of the Land' explored the sound of ploughed furrows in a nearby field, tracing them as if they were the grooves of a huge vinyl record cut into the earth.
The results of the project can be viewed in more detail here.
Italy performance tour
Throughout the first half of April 2018 I embarked on a small tour of Italy, developing and presenting a slightly different approach in performance, generating sounds in situ and concentrating on specific resonant sounds of materials. The tour took me to Bologna, Marghera, Acqui Terme, Torino, Milano, Cagliari and Pietrasanta. I was accompanied on many dates by the duo Krishnamurti (Giovanni Lami and Lorenzo Abattoir).
Recordings from the performances served as sources material for the album 'Forced to Repeat Myself' released December 2020 by Misanthropic Agenda.
Monsoon (Vol.2), MoKS, Mooste, Estonia
Over the months of February and March I worked in collaboration with Korean performer and choreographer Hany.P to develop a new version of her conceptual project 'Monsoon'. Using found materials and sounds in the studio space, we developed a set piece that took the form of an installation that Hany responded to, and in turn responded to her movements and choreography. The project was kindly hosted and supported by MoKS, Mooste, Estonia.
Fresh Winds Biennale 2018, Gardur, Iceland
Simon was honoured to be invited to participate in the Fresh Winds Biennale (https://fresh-winds.com/) in Iceland for a second time. For the exhibition he created the installation 'Geothermal Activity' that used infrasonic frequencies (vibration felt but not heard) to cause lava rocks to move and make their own sound. https://vimeo.com/253032882
He also performed during the opening and closing events in collaboration with performers Kana Nakamura (JP) and Hany.P (KR).
For various reasons I have explained the process behind the work here.
Tsonami Festival XI, Valparaíso, Chile
Supported by British Council, Simon participated in the esteemed Tsonami sound art festival in Chile for a second time.
He was commissioned to perform site-specific works in the Teatro Parque Cultural de Valparaíso and Tornamesa Barón, the latter responding to and performing with a number of disused railway carriages.
He also created a visual work for the festival exhibition. Using lime ('cal' in Chile) he created a work that extends ideas from his 'Traceable Echoes' concept of retaining a trace of a sonic activity. 'Traces of Lime' used the sound of lime corroding aluminium to create two works on aluminium sheet using the same effect of corrosion.
Jeonnam International Ink Art Pre-Biennale, Mokpo, South Korea
Through working with ink drawings created by sound in South Korea earlier this year in Busan and Iksan, Simon was invited to participate in this new festival in Mokpo. For the project he was invited to make work with traditional ink and paper of Korea. Using sounds recorded in the harbour of the city, he created various different drawings, displayed in the form of an installation.
Open Arts Project, Busan, South Korea
From late September to early November Simon was in residence with Open Arts Project in Busan once again, as a guest of curator and artist Sung Baeg. While there he created 2 new more visually orientated artworks for a gallery exhibition at Merge? and also performed two collaborative works with performers Hany.P and Solene de Cock.
Nakanojo Biennale, Nakanojo, Japan
Invited to participate in the 6th edition of Nakanojo Biennale, Gunma Prefecture, Japan, Simon created a new version of his sound and light project, initiated in Namwon, South Korea in 2016. This iteration, 'Everyday Emanations (Dead End)', used parts of scrapped cars as resonators for sounds which were recorded inside or through various materials in the street outside the exhibition space.
"Hidden Dreams, Hidden Sounds", Germany
For 2 weeks in April, Simon worked with choreographer Birgit Asshoff to give workshops and create a performance with schoolchildren of the Bad Driburg Gesamtschule and a collaborative sound and movement piece as a duo in the Raum Für Kunst in Paderborn.
Taipei Artist Village - Treasure Hill, Taipei, Taiwan
From January to March 2017 Simon was artist-in-residence with Taipei Artist Village at the Treasure Hill site, a historic location with a buddhist temple and remnants from pre-World War 2 Japanese occupation.
During the residency he created two new works, 'This Chamber (is never empty)' and 'Bottled Water' - please click on the titles to view short movies of each. He also ran workshops with Ting Shuo Space in Tainan and at Venue in Taipei with Sandra Tavali.
"Everyday Emanations", Solo Exhibition, Tokyo, Japan
Second version of sound and light installation developed as part of Namwon Sound Project in South Korea in 2016, hosted by Yoshino Shotaro and S.Y.P., Tokyo, Japan. Please follow this link to view documentation of the work: https://vimeo.com/203780196
Residency with Pintu Miring, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
A 3 week residency with artist Noor Ibrahim at Pintu Miring Studio. The residency culminated in a temporary sound installation featuring field recordings and found objects 'Shifted Perception' and an interactive work using pieces of broken terracotta 'Connecting the Broken Pieces'.
Namwon Sound Project, Namwon, South Korea
Simon was one of 6 artists invited to respond to the historic and quiet city of Namwon in South Korea. Taking inspiration from the empty spaces in the city he constructed a piece that played everyday sounds through everyday discarded objects, such as a plastic bucket and an ice cream carrying box. Inside each of the 6 collected objects, he also installed a lamp which responded to the sound impulse played through each.
Through sound and light he sought to alter the perception of the sounds heard, the objects and the space. https://vimeo.com/212716480
Father Sky Mother Earth for Tsukuba Art Center, Fureai-no-sato, Japan
Invited for the third consecutive year to participate in the outdoor art exhibition organised by Tsukuba Art Center in Fureai-no-sato on Mount Tsukuba, Japan, Simon wished to create a new work that used the energy of water to create a visual mark or trace of sound. His work 'Vestiges of Discomposure' consisted of small 'landforms' that were left as a trace of performative actions at each point in a mountain stream where the water becomes turbulent, creating greater energy and sound.
Abiko International Open-air Art Exhibition 2016, Japan
Simon was invited to participate in the 16th edition of the exhibition series in Fusa, Chiba Prefecture, Japan. During his time there he created 2 outdoor artworks.
The first, 'Fureai', used discarded speakers, old bamboo, gravel, a contact mic and solar power in an interactive sound installation hung between two cherry trees. The second, 'Return 2 (or 'to', or 'too'), playfully revisited a piece created for Tsukuba Art Center in 2015 ('Return'), this time using a large discarded cupboard as the soundboard for a musical instrument. Originally intended to be played by the wind, because of its position it became more successful as another interactive piece.
Ropewalkers by OSR Projects, Dawe's Twineworks, Somerset, UK
Throughout the year Simon developed work for OSR Projects in West Coker, Somerset, UK. He is one of three commissioned artists who are responding to the site of Dawe's Twine Works, a Victorian twine making site that has in recent years been renovated and restored.
Simon's project 'Trace Evidence' continues to be presented as a sound installation across the whole site of the twine works. A number of headphone listening points are positioned at various points around the main building and along the 'ropewalk' so that one may chart the process of twinemaking from a bygone age. The sound elements are mainly generated from retracing grooves worn into the hard materials of the works, such as metal nails, glass rods, wooden blocks and steel baths. The sounds of each groove were collected and combined to create one long journey between the points.
An additional part of the work was a lathe-cut vinyl record, containing a further two compositions using the source sounds. Through this one can hear the sounds recreated by tracing one set of grooves being played from those on the record. Through continued playing, a lathe-cut vinyl record deteriorates, which means the sound will eventually disappear once again.
Yatoo International Project, Wongol, South Korea
Through June and July Simon participated in the Yatoo International Project at the Nature Art House in the small village of Wongol, near the headquarters in Gongju, South Korea. For this project he developed methods of visualising the effects and traces of sound from nature.
Omega 3, Moks, Mooste, Estonia
'Efflorescence' - Throughout April and May Simon collaborated with John Grzinich on a sound installation using recorded performative actions collected during "Active Crossover: Mooste" the previous year. The work was installed, composed and presented in a working Mooste Seed Sorting Factory in Mooste, Estonia during the Omega 3 exhibition organised by MoKS (EE) and Totaldobže (LV).
Arc Residency, Romainmôtier, Switzerland
Through March 2016 Simon was invited as one of three artists to participate in the 'Custom Made' residency programme at Arc Artist Residency in Romainmôtier, Switzerland. During the residency he created a new sound work based on the concept of 'Watering the Piano'. The studio space he was given featured a baby grand piano that requires constant hydration to conserve the wood of its body.
He also collaborated for the first time with artists Gregory Büttner and Francisco Meirino.
Please visit the project blog HERE.
"Beyond the Walls of Eden" sound design
Commissioned to compose original soundtrack and sound design for video installation project by Scarlett Rouge and Saulo Madrid.
Fresh Winds Biennale 2017, Gardur, Iceland
Simon was one of 50 international artists invited to participate in the festival 'Fresh Winds' from 15 December 2015 to 17 January 2016, curated by Mireya Samper. During this time he constructed and composed a large-scale sound installation inside the town's working lighthouse and initiated collaborations with a number of the other artists, presenting new performative works and creating sound design for video and performance projects.
Please visit Simon's project page here.
Iksan Creation Center, Iksan, South Korea
From July until November Simon worked with Iksan Creation Center developing sound works for exhibition (particularly the installation 'Sweep') he continued to collaborate in the project 'Extended Dimensions' with Park Jin Young, developed new work with video performance artist Shin Mijung and performed as part of a project by Kim Sora for the Korean Culture Centre, London, UK.
One further opportunity was to perform with Park Jin Young and Ryu Hankil at the Korean Residency Festival in Gunsan in October.
Sousei Exhibition for Tsukuba Art Center, Fureai-no-sato, Japan
'Return' is a commissioned sound and nature art installation created for Tsukuba Art Center for the 'Sousei' exhibition on Mount Tsukuba, Japan.
The piece features old drawers, steel wire, steel strip, broken glass and leaves. The drawers are transformed into sound making instruments by stretching a length of wire across them. They are then hung from trees in an avenue, with a piece of glass suspended above that strikes the wire when blown by the wind.
Please view the project page here.
"Extended Dimensions" collaboration with choreographer Park Jin Young, South Korea
Throughout July the pair worked together developing various themes at Soomdo in Seoul. Entitled 'Boundaries of Performance' they used every part of the studio space they could, including the window, outside space, adjacent cafe and even ceiling.
The results can be seen here: www.extendeddimensions.com as can the result of a week the artists spent in June developing a piece that comprised material from Active Crossover: Mooste, but also responded to the theatre space given to them by Seoul Art Space Seogyo.
Active Crossover: Mooste, MoKS, Mooste, Estonia
Simon Whetham was selected by MoKS artist residency to direct a new iteration of the project Active Crossover, which took the form of an international collaborative residency project through April and May 2105.
Working closely with John and Evelyn Grzinich, the Directors of MoKS in Mooste, Estonia, he was joined by Tuulikki Bartosik (EE/SE), Richard Eigner (AT), Fernando Godoy (CL), Jim Haynes (US), Park Jin Young (KR), Rostislav Rekuta LV), Yiorgis Sakellariou (GR), Dawn Scarfe (UK), Eamon Sprod (AU), Arlene Tucker (US/TW) and James Wyness (UK). Together they explored various aspects of artistic investigation and group work.
Simon was awarded the Artists International Development Award, granted by Arts Council England and the British Council, to run the project as part of his own career development.
For further information about the project and participants, please visit the website: www.activecrossover.co.uk and the project blog:
Cavesong Symphony in a Miner Key, Dudley, UK
Commission as Sound Recordist/Designer for site-specific performance in Dudley Limestone Caverns commissioned by Georgina Biggs and She-Wolf Productions.
Galerie Školská 28, Prague, Czechia
Through January Simon was Artist-in-Residence with Gallery Školská 28. While working with the gallery he performed alongside local and visiting musicians, worked on various compositional pieces, commissions and performance ideas, and gave a workshop in recording and performance which was presented on the 25th January.
A journal of Simon's activities during the residency period, which can be visited here: http://simonwhethamskolska28.tumblr.com/
Artist Residency TEMI, Daejeon, South Korea
From September through November 2014 Simon was one of six resident artists at Artist Residence TEMI in Daejeon, South Korea.
During the three month period he gave workshops in listening, recording, microphone construction and performance at Seoul Art Space Mullae in Seoul, the Children's Museum at The National Museum of Contemporary Art in Gwacheon, Artist Residency TEMI in Daejeon and Arko Artist House in Seoul.
As selected artist to represent TEMI at 'Creative Tomorrow', the Seoul Art Foundation Residency Festival in November, he was invited to both exhibit the work 'Found Sound Materials' created for 'Shrinking World, Nomadic Utopians' in the Citizen's Hall of Seoul City Hall and also to perform a site-specific concert in the Basrak Hall theatre space there.
He documented his investigations, experiences and audio recordings in a blog you are welcome to read here: http://simonwhethamattemi.tumblr.com/
The World of Hidden Sounds, Castlemaine, Australia
Through June and July 2014 Simon collaborated with Eamon Sprod (aka Tarab) in Castlemaine, Australia, running the project 'The World of Hidden Sounds - Castlemaine' as part of Punctum Inc.'s 'Seedpod Amplified' series of residency projects. Integral to the project were listening, recording and sound exploration sessions with years 5 & 6 students at Castlemaine Primary South School, working closely with teachers Joseph Bromley and Thais Sansom, and parent Joel Meadows.
Through these sessions and their own sonic explorations the artists developed an ambitious conducted performance that was presented to two separate audiences on Sunday 20th July at the Old Castlemaine Gaol. Using the techniques demonstrated and recordings gathered we will be activating the space, with the children acting as performers in the piece.
To view the project blog please visit the blog here: http://worldofhiddensounds.tumblr.com/
The Salmagundi, Stoke-on-Trent, UK
Whilst in residence at Villa Waldberta, Simon was commissioned to create a sonic environment for 'The Salmagundi'. This comprises an installation that represents a half creature/half machine entity that young people climb into to solve a puzzle which will return humans to their 'pure' form in a vision of the near-future.
Residency at Villa Waldberta, Feldafing, Bavaria, Germany
Throughout February and March 2014 Simon was one of 5 artists-in-residence at Villa Waldberta. During this time he developed new working methods such as tests to build hydrophones and performing without laptop; collaborated with artists Ypsmael (DE), Christine Schörkhuber (AT) (producing the album "Elephant in the Salon") and Alexander Rishaug (NO), all of whom he invited; and with Helen Varley Jamieson, who commissioned him to compose a soundscape for her 'Salmagundi' project (see above).
He ran workshops in active listening, field recording techniques and the construction of contact microphones and hydrophones, and also ran a workshop session for a group of young unaccompanied refugees in the Bayern Kaserne camp, with unexpected results...
Active Crossover: Kristiansand - residency project with Agder Kunstsenter, Kristiansand, Norway
From 15th October until 1st December 2013, Simon was artist-in-residence at Agder Kunstsenter, Kristiansand. During this time he developed new work activating motors with sound impulses from field recordings captured in the local area. This led to a collaboration with Venezuelan artist Naysa Andrade Tønnesland.
He also collaborated with local musicians Hilde Marie Holsen, Jon S. Lunde and Terje Paulsen, finally presenting a concert in the Kristiansand Kunsthall as part of an exhibition opening by Erik Pirolt.
An important part of the residency was giving presentations to 300 local schoolchildren in one week as part of the 'Cultural Rucksack' arts education project and Simon ran a workshop in active listening, field recording techniques and the construction of contact microphones and hydrophones.
Project blog: http://activecrossoverkristiansand.tumblr.com/
Los Alquimistas - collaborative project with Argentinian artist Laura Focarazzo, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Laura invites artists working with field recordings and sound manipulation to remix one recording from her collection. She then creates video works in response to the sounds. To listen to the project so far, follow this link: https://soundcloud.com/laurafocarazzo/sets/alquimia
'El Mundo de los Sonidos Ocultos' for Red Artes Visuales de Medellín, Colombia
English translation: 'The World of Hidden Sounds'. From July until September 2013 Simon was running sessions once a week in 7 different locations for schoolchildren as part of an arts education project run by Alcaldía of Medellín and Casa Tres Patios. The result was a huge concert with the children playing 'acoustic laptops', as pioneered by Tore Honoré Bøe.
Click here to visit the project blog.
Residency at Villa Waldberta, Feldafing, Germany
Throughout June 2013 Simon was one of the Artists-in-Residence at Villa Waldberta, near Munich in Germany, to create new work and research new presentation and recording methods.
"The Softening of MAO-A" project research and development for Tom Bailey, UK
Tom Bailey, a Bristol-based theatre director and artist, invited Simon to create 3 distinct sound environments for his project.
This is a performance that explores a scenario concerning a single gene (MAO-A) within contemporary cultural conceptualisation/ commercialisation of genetics. The performance is an installation in which a small audience is invited into a fictional ‘natural therapy’ clinic where, over 30-45 minutes, a single gene in their bodies will be transformed through a sonic impulse.
MUUA Lab/C3P incorporating Active Crossover, Universidad de Antioquia, Medellín, Colombia
From January to April 2013 Simon was in residency at Casa Tres PatiosCasa Tres Patios, Medellin, Colombia, working in collaboration with the Museo Universitario de la Universidad de Antioquia. The project is intended to give an artist a working space to develop new ideas in a gallery space that is open to be visited by members of the public, creating new discourse and interest in the arts.
Click here for the project blog/website.
Active Crossover: Valparaíso, Chile
From December 2012 to January 2013 Simon was artist-in-residence with Pia Michelle, in collaboration with Tsonami in Valparaiso, Chile, running the Active Crossover project to explore the sonic characteristics of the local area and building, and collaborating with local artists.
Russian Tour 2012: Whetham/Perales
Throughout the month Simon toured Russia with Argentinian musician Fernando Perales, hosted by Monochrome Vision and partners, performing in Samara, Volgograd, Yaroslavl, Rostov, St. Petersburgh, Petrozavodsk and Moscow.
"Time Release" collaboration with Kiyoharu Kuwuyama, Japan
As part of the exhibition 'Carpe Diem' in the municipal art museum and gallery of Toyota City, Japan, Simon collaborated with Lethe (Kiyoharu Kuwayama) to produce a site specific audio/visual piece which was presented in the museum's auditorium space.
Active Crossover: Castlemaine, Castlemaine, Australia
Participating in the Seedpod Residency at Punctum, Castlemaine, Australia. In May 2012 Simon worked with local artists Eamon Sprod (Tarab), Lizzie Pogson and Jacques Soddell, exploring sound phenomena at the ICU, Castlemaine and the surrounding area, culminating in an installation and live performance event.
Active Listening and Field Recording Workshop, Valparaíso, Chile
In April 2012 Simon was been invited to run a 3 day Active Listening and Field Recording workshop at Balmaceda Arte Joven, Valparaiso, Chile and also to perform in a solo concert.
Campos De Gutierrez Residency, Medellín, Colombia
Artist-in-residence at Campos de Gutierrez in Santa Elena just outside Medellin throughout March 2012, experimenting with new methods of presenting sound works resulting in a performance and installation as part of 'La Casa Esta En Su Propio Parque' hosted by Plazarte, Medellin, Colombia. The resulting work was published by LINE Editions: http://www.lineimprint.com/editions/digital/line_061/
Active Crossover 2011, Touring Exhibition and Events, UK
'Active Crossover' was hosted in six gallery spaces in the UK throughout 2011: exhibitions were held in South Hill Park, Bracknell; Wolstenholme Creative Space, Liverpool; Millspace, Armley, Leeds; and Soundfjord, London and further performance events were hosted by Phoenix Brighton and Arnolfini in Bristol. Artists involved include Scanner, Iris Garrelfs, Lee Gamble, Kaffe Matthews, John Grzinich, SJ Esau, Kathy Hinde, Bela Emerson, Mark Fell, Rhodri Davies, Ben Gwilliam, Philip Jeck, Rebecca Sharp, Colin Potter, Cheapmachines and Jonathan Coleclough.
The project was also supported by Arts Council England, PRS for Music Foundation and I Love West Leeds Festival.
For full details of the project, venues and artists involved, please visit www.activecrossover.co.uk
Mic.Observatori, Valencia, Spain - collaboration with Hugo Olim (PT)
Following the success of their collaborative work for Madeiradig Festival 2010, Hugo Olim and Simon Whetham were invited to present a further site-specific version of the work for the Observatori Festival in Valencia, Spain. Here they explored the streets and buildings of Valencia to find the materials they used in the piece.
An excerpt can be seen here: https://vimeo.com/25078696
Field Recording Workshop, Madeira, Portugal
Invited to run active listening and field recording workshops at Madeiradig Festival 2011, Madeira Island, Portugal
Field Recording Workshop, Bogotá, Colombia
For two weeks in May 2011 Simon gave field recording and composition workshop sessions at Universidad Nacional de Colombia in Bogotá, Colombia, at the invitation of the Maestría Artes Plásticas y Visuales, to be included as part of the Masters Programme.
Active Crossover II, Grey Area Gallery, 31 Queens Road, Brighton.
Simon curated a second showing of the sound exhibition at the Grey Area Gallery in Brighton. Opening and closing night events include performances from local artists Dylan Nyoukis, Ian Murphy, Rowan Forestier-Walker, Paul Khimasia Morgan, Joseph Young aka Field, Daniel Jones and Mike Blow.
"Mic.Madeira" for Madeiradig Festival, Madeira, Portugal
Simon Whetham and Hugo Olim were teamed up by Rafael Biscoito, the artistic director of the MADEIRADIG festival, for the creation of an audiovisual performance in 2010. For the performance at MADEIRADIG, Whetham created a multi-channel audio composition from field recordings captured across the island of Madeira. Olim’s performance was created from the usage of a microscope fitted with a digital camera, with which he magnified various substances and objects, all from Madeira.
The artists subsequently recomposed the piece for presentation as a DVD release through Portugal's Crónica Electronica. Please visit the page at www.cronicaelectronica.org for more details.
Active Crossover, Estonia, Latvia and UK
Throughout May 2009 Simon was Artist-in-Residence at the Art Container, Polymer Culturehouse, Tallinn, Estonia, where he created new work, collaborated with artists and musicians based in Estonia and Latvia and ran Active Listening and Field Recording workshops.
The results of the residency were exhibited in the Dark Studio, Arnolfini, Bristol from 1st-18th October 2009 as part of a season devoted to sound art, which also included presentations and performances from Francisco Lopez and Jacob Kiirkegaard. Artists invited to perform at the opening and closing events of Active Crossover included John Grzinich, Jez riley French, Douglas Benford and Iris Garrelfs.
Tree Hugger Project, Copenhagen, Denmark
In conjunction with sound recordings from Simon Whetham, composer Michal Szostalo and sound artist Maile Colbert have collaborated with the artists Wiktor Szostalo and Agnieszka Gradzik to produce a multimedia, interactive performance with the Tree Hugger Project for the 2009 UN Climate Conference.
Sculptures are fitted with sensors that will react to the proximity of the audience, serving to remind us of the effect of our even most delicate treading upon the earth. The sounds emitted from the “tree huggers” when the sensor is activated will also effect at random the composition being performed by the sound artists, serving to remind us of our interconnectivity with all around us.
Urban Sound Stories Vol. 01-05 for Kunstradio, Austria
Sounds and photographs as soundscapes of European cities, curated by Gruenrekorder, Germany.
Eight London locations were recorded along the Central Line of the London Underground and photographs were taken of the location left and right of the recording position. The recordings are composed into a 19 minute piece, then the images were converted into midi files and the recordings fed through them, creating new sound work using both audio and visual data from the location.
Other participating artists: Eric Cordier (Paris), Tobias Bolt (Vienna), Roland Etzin (Dublin) and Lasse-Marc Riek (Rotterdam).
Resistance, Bristol, UK
Resistance is a dual-screen moving image installation that will tour galleries and museums from autumn 2009. Its starting point is the Nazi programme of mass-murder targeting disabled people and, crucially, disabled people's resistance to it.
Simon was commissioned to design a 6-channel and 4-channel sound mix to accompany the installation.
Visit the project website here: http://www.roaring-girl.com/work/resistance/
Lightyears, Paintworks, Bristol, UK
Commissioned by Kathryn Thomas Ltd. to compose music for a website and an installation that was the highlight of the exhibition 'Kathryn Thomas Lightyears' - 'Darkspace' comprised new space-inspired paintings, dramatically lit, for which Simon composed an immersive and complementary surround sound piece.
Co-LAB'08, Art Container, Tallinn, Estonia
From October 5th-14th 2008 Simon was a guest of the Non Grata collective in Estonia. One of eight artists invited to Tallinn, he worked with live sound manipulation during various performance events.
The Bridge Project, UK
Following attending the Atmospheres field recording workshop headed by Chris Watson, Simon and fellow Bristol-based artist Matt Davies were invited to perform at the Atmospheres 2 series of events held at the Museum of Garden History in May 2008. The duo also performed at Spike Island, Bristol and Futuresonic Festival, Manchester, UK.
60x60 is an electroacoustic project containing 60 electronic works by 60 International artists, each 60 seconds in length. The project continues to tour internationally, and has also developed into a live dance and performance event.
Mamori Sound Project, Amazonas, Brazil
Simon was one of 12 international field recording artists to be chosen to participate in the Mamori Sound Project, a two week residential workshop based in the Amazon Rainforest region of Brazil in November 2007. The residency is run by Francisco Lopez.
Simon's participation was generously funded by the Arts Council England.
"A Dark Light" group exhibition, Reykjavik, Iceland
In February 2007 Simon was one of three artists invited to exhibit work as part of the Winter Lights Festival. The group exhibited work inspired by a previous research trip in 2005 in the Lake Hall of Reykjavik City Hall.
Night-Flight for Germination, UK
Simon assisted Scanner (artist Robin Rimbaud) in recording and executing the soundtrack to the multi-disciplinary performance piece 'Night-Flight', which took place under cover of night on the Clwydian Hills of North Wales.
Artist research trip, Iceland
Simon joined three artists to explore remote areas of Iceland during the winter with the aim of capturing the Aurora Borealis and the atmosphere of the country. The project evolved to become "A Dark Light".
This first use of field recordings as raw materials for creation can be heard here