I was commissioned by Viewpoints, an arts organisation based in Teeside to make an installation as part of the 10 day long Teeside wide arts festival which took place autumn 2018.
I was inspired by the Headland area of Hartlepool and gained permission to make my installation in the ancient St Hilda’s church which stands on the headland.
One of the first sound mirrors installed in the country once stood nearby, it was developed after German battleships bombarded the area in the first world war killing many people (it was unfortunately demolished in the early 1970s) and I decided to use sound mirrors as part of the piece (In a way bringing them back to their original home) as well as investigating the sonics of the space with sub bass and talking to locals both about the area and the lost sound mirror.
Local vocal group Henwen collaborated by singing in tune with the resonance of the church, these vocal improvisations were woven into the multi channel sound installation.
Verity Brown the vicar was very supportive and the congregation became involved with John installing an old war time radio that was tuned into the ether – we ran this radio through the sound mirrors creating hotspots of sound at the front of the church, these interacted with other hot and cold spots of sound caused by the sub bass which was tuned to the space.
The Henwen vocals as well as tuned tones also caused hot and cold spots of sound throughout the space. The locals stories were incorporated into the sound field at the front seating area and in the porches of the church.
The outside sound mirrors were powered using solar panels and were a collaboration with long term collaborator Rob Olins.
I installed approximately 30 speakers in the space and by moving around inside the space the audience were able to create their own version of the sound piece, there was an area to sit, take a cup of tea and to listen toward the front of this beautiful church.