Tuesday
Oct212014

Video: Performance during Hai Art Residency (Hailuoto, Finland)

In July and August this year I studied and performed in the Netherlands (Jacob TV), Germany (Darmstadt International Summer Course for New Music) and Finland (Antye Greie-Ripatti, Hai Art). The week and a half I was in Finland was mainly spent on the island of Hailuoto (pop. 989), ten hours by train north of Helsinki.

Setting up for a performance in Darmstadt with Thomas Wagensommerer (AT), Denise Frey (DE), and Dennis Sobolev (IL):

The Hai Art media lab on Hailuoto is 15,172 km in a straight line from my front door in Melbourne. The area around Hailuoto and Oulu on the mainland is an interesting place with dynamic geography. It's close to the Arctic Circle, with perpetual day during summer, and perpetual night along with an ice road across the sea during winter. The island is rising out of the sea by a centimetre each year, revealing new land, and one resident told me of noticeable changes to the mainland coastline over her lifetime.

Hailuoto is known as a destination for both bird watching and hunting. I arrived during hunting season, and initially mistook the people in camouflage for soldiers. Rifle shots could be heard through the night, and made some (mostly remote) areas of the island unsafe to visit.

Hai Art has commissioned some great art on the island, including a weather-responsive sound installation in the old weather observatory, bicycles fitted with GPS and speakers that play site-specific audio as you ride, and the 'Organum' - a concrete acoustic sculpture. My favourite was the 'Anchorhold', a remote, unlikely looking structure designed for intimate discussion:

My residency involved study with Antye Greie-Ripatti, and a performance in the Organum using field recordings I had made during my time on the island. Here is a video documenting the preparation of the performance, with some additional audio from the performance itself:

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