Resonance: Philosophy for Sonic Art


On Monday 25th April between 1 – 3pm in room G202 we’ll be discussing the sixth and final section of Peter Price’s book ‘Resonance: Philosophy for Sonic Art’, entitled Openings to New Sonic Art.

“In an attempt to re-centre a philosophy of music within – and radiating out from – the figure of resonance. Peter Price formulates a new philosophy of the sonic …”

In this section Price suggests ways in which we can approach and think about experimental sonic art.

Please note this is a rather long text for a reading group, but for the purpose of this reading you could omit the description of the two example works labelled (((ART IN RESONANCE))) pp.261-273 and the section that starts at the 2nd paragraph on pp.282 to half way down p.287.

Peter Price is a composer, digital artist and media theorist. He co-directs <fidget> in Philadelphia (, a research laboratory for new forms of art, performance and media. He holds a PhD from the European Graduate School in Switzerland.

Everyone is welcome!

(Text introduced by David Crossen)


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A Manifesto for Performative Research


On Monday 14th March between 1 – 3pm in room G202 we’ll be discussing Brad Haseman’s A Manifesto for Performative Research.


Researchers in the arts, media and design often struggle to find serviceable methodologies within the orthodox research paradigms of quantitative and qualitative research. In response to this and over the past decade, practice-led research has emerged as a potent strategy for those researchers who wish to initiate and then pursue their research through practice. This paper examines the dynamics and significance of practice-led research and argues for it to be understood as a research strategy within an entirely new research paradigm – Performative Research. Taking it’s name from J.L. Austin’s speech act theory, performative research stands as an alternative to the qualitative and quantitative paradigms by insisting on different approaches to designing, conducting and reporting research. The paper concludes by observing that once understood and fully theorised, the performative research paradigm will have applications beyond the arts and across the creative and cultural industries generally.

Everyone is welcome!

(Text introduced by Jonathan Baxter.)

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Laibach and the NSK


On Monday 29th February between 1 – 3pm in room G202 we’ll be discussing Simon Bell’s Laibach and the NSK: Aestheticising the East/West Nexus in Post-Totalitarian Europe.

This paper reflects a study in how the Slovenian art collective the NSK (Neue Slowenische Kunst), and more specifically it’s sub-group Laibach, interrogate the representation of Central and Eastern European cultural memory in the context of post- Socialism, and operate as a nexus between Eastern Europe and the West. NSK and Laibach represent a case study of how an art collective and music band can trigger reactions at the local and global level by their artistic approach, the visual and aural language they use and their political outlook.

Everyone is welcome!

(Text introduced by Maja Zeco.)

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The New English Landscape

jason21 21.tif

On Monday 15th February between 1 – 3pm in room G202 we’ll be discussing Jason Orton and Ken Worpole’s essay ‘The New English Landscape‘.

Selected passages, with particular reference to the UK’s 1953 winter flooding, will be considered in relation to wider issues of climate change, rising sea levels and contemporary experiences of rain induced flooding in Aberdeenshire.

Everyone is welcome!

(Text introduced by Nicola Chambury.)

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The Distribution of the Sensible

ranciere photo

On Monday 1st February between 1 – 3pm in room G202 we’ll be discussing Jacques Rancière’s Distribution of the Sensible – The Politics Of Aesthetics.

Design plays a significant role in creating material culture, and this role assumes a power position, which decides about inclusion and exclusion of certain identities, interests, and opinions within the lived experience. In other words, they decide what is to see or not to see, to hear or not to hear, and to say or not to say in the distribution of time, space and experience. For next week’s reading group, I chose The Distribution of Sensible: The Politics of Aesthetics from Rancière to examine this regime of sense, or sensible order, that designers, as well as artists, take part in (per)forming.

Everyone is welcome!

(Text introduced by Hilal Bugali.)

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The Art of Noises


On Monday 7th December between 1 – 3pm in room G202 we’ll be discussing Luigi Russolo’s ‘The Art of Noises’.

The original manifesto is in the form of a letter from futurist painter Luigi Russolo to futurist composer Pratella from 1913.

The manifesto seems to presage the ‘Musique Concréte’ movement of Pierre Schaeffer of the late 1940s and 50s. Not only that, some of the technology of tapes, synthesisers and later digital sampling technologies also seem to be anticipated. As a manifesto, it seeks to sweep away the established practices of orchestral music.

The issues raised in the piece impact upon subsequent discussions of making a distinction between music, sound, noise, and ultimately sonic (or sound) art.

Participants are also invited to read an introduction, written by Barclay Brown, to a volume of Russolo’s essays including the manifesto itself published in 1983. All of these essays were written in the 3 or 4 years following the manifesto. This introduction gives more context for Russolo’s work after this letter was written, including descriptions of the noise machines, the intonurumori, he constructed and used for performances. It also discusses some of the difficulties Russolo had in attempting to realise his vision.

We can draw our own conclusions about the success (or otherwise) of Russolo’s cause and its influence on 20th century Music and Sonic Art.

Everyone is welcome!

(Text introduced by Dave Crossen.)

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Conversational Drift

The Harrisons

On Monday 23rd November between 1 – 3pm in room G202 we’ll be discussing Craig Adcock’s article Conversational Drift: Helen Mayer Harrison and Newton Harrison. The article was written 1992 in conversation with the Harrisons – whose contributions are embedded in the text.

Whilst acting as a general introduction to the work of the Harrisons, the article shines a light on the role of metaphor and storytelling in the context of art and design practice and research.

In response to the provocation of human extinction the article asks, ‘Do we care? And if so, to what end do we care?’

Participants will be asked to reflect on the ‘metaphors’ that sustain their practice-based research and the ‘voices’ that constitute their articulation.

Everyone is welcome!

(Text introduced by Nicola Chambury.)

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