Actually, it wasn’t to hard. Most people could speak at least a little English and were willing to speak it, if not excited to speak another language. Truthfully, it made me feel a little ashamed I couldn’t try to speak their language.
Strangely enough though, almost everyone there seemed to view knowing Italian as unimportant. I’m not sure if it was just everyone’s overwhelmingly generous sense of hospitality or not, but almost everybody seemed to feel I had no reason to learn the language. But, I think Italian sounds beautiful. I vowed that when I returned I would know Italian and fully intend to learn it, even if it is just for myself.
More local coverage of the Installation. The video’s caption reads:
THERE WILL BE TIME UNTIL TOMORROW TO VISIT THE SOUND INSTALLATION “SOUND THE PEOPLE”, A PROJECT REALIZED THROUGH A COLLABORATION BETWEEN INTERNATIONAL ARTISTS AND AQUILANI CULTURAL INSTITUTIONS INCLUDING THE ASSOCIATION HATHA CIUDAD.
Some national coverage of the installation. The translated caption reads:
The red zone of L’Aquila, a territory where 25,000 people lived before the earthquake of 2009, is closed to the public and essentially abandoned. ”Challenging” this are Milanese artist Anna Dusi and American sound engineer Alex Schetter, who have installed speakers in the streets of the city center that reproduce the voices and sounds of everyday life in the capital of Abruzzo.
It’s hard to put a value to this question, but the short answer is quite intense. The not so short answer is I was brought onto the project about four months before the opening. But a fair amount of the first two months were spent in planning and research. A little over a month was spent developing the Civetta Sound System, while the build of the six Civettas (Civette if you’re Italian) was done in a little over a week. Though, it took about 2 weeks for the parts to be shipped from as far away as Hong Kong. Some recording and editing took place along the way, but a lot, if not most of it was recorded and edited in Italy during the 4 days before the opening, and was mix in less than two days. The five 4-hour long masters were printed less than 15 minutes before we opened. So yes, quite intense overall.
I hope to share a detailed account of all the planning that went into this project with a few videos. I’ll start posting those in a day or two.
Without further ado, I give you The Sound of People. A raw walkthrough of the street exhibition captured on an iPhone. This is part of the first half hour of the piece during the opening event.
I’m working on a way to convey the direct program material over stereo speakers. But for now, I do have video. It will probably be the first thing I post from the massive amount of pictures, video, sound, coverage and stories I have.
I’m back States-side, waiting for my flight from Chicago to Los Angeles. I have a bunch of pictures, videos, sounds and stories I plan to share here in the coming weeks, I wish I could have shared more while I was there. But every moment was
an experience, if I had stopped to blog I would have missed one. Please feel free to ask questions or hate on my lack posted thus far. Just know there is plenty more coming soon.
Here’s an article on our Installation in a major Italian newspaper, Il Centro. Sorry there’s no translation. But, apparently I am “Il Michelangelo del suono” or The Michelangelo of Sound. That’s quite an introduction. I’m honored.
Held a press conference earlier (a first for me). Here’s an online article. A bit was lost in the double translation, but the gist of it is still there.