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Sound art is an artistic discipline in which "sound is utilised as a primary "medium. Like many genres of "contemporary art, sound art may be "interdisciplinary in nature, or be used in "hybrid forms. Sound art can be considered as being an element of many areas such as "acoustics, "psychoacoustics, "electronics, "noise music, audio "media, "found or environmental sound, soundscapes, explorations of the human body, "sculpture, "architecture, "film or "video and other aspects of the current discourse of contemporary art.
In "Western art, early examples include "Luigi Russolo's "Intonarumori or noise intoners, and subsequent experiments by "Dadaists, "Surrealists, the "Situationist International, and in "Fluxus "happenings. Because of the diversity of sound art, there is often debate about whether sound art falls within the domains of "visual art or "experimental music categories, or both. Other artistic lineages from which sound art emerges are "conceptual art, "minimalism, "site-specific art, "sound poetry, "electro-acoustic music, "spoken word, "avant-garde poetry, and "experimental theatre.
The earliest documented use of the term in the U.S. is from a catalogue for a show called "Sound/Art" at The Sculpture Center in New York City, created by William Hellerman in 1983. The show was sponsored by "The SoundArt Foundation," which Hellerman founded in 1982.["citation needed] The artists featured in the show were: "Vito Acconci, Connie Beckley, Bill and Mary Buchen, "Nicolas Collins, "Sari Dienes and "Pauline Oliveros, Richard Dunlap, "Terry Fox, William Hellermann, Jim Hobart, "Richard Lerman, "Les Levine, "Joe Lewis, Tom Marioni, "Jim Pomeroy, Alan Scarritt, "Carolee Schneeman, Bonnie Sherk, "Keith Sonnier, Norman Tuck, "Hannah Wilke, Yom Gagatzi. The following is an excerpt from the catalogue essay by art historian Don Goddard: "It may be that sound art adheres to curator Hellermann's perception that "hearing is another form of seeing,' that sound has meaning only when its connection with an image is understood... The conjunction of sound and image insists on the engagement of the viewer, forcing participation in real space and concrete, responsive thought rather than illusionary space and thought." Sound art always takes place in an acoustic context, which may influence interpretation as much as if not more than any associated imagery. Installations of sound art rely on the acoustics of the spaces and reproduction technologies employed as can be exemplified by current practitioners such as Chris Watson.
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The Klankenbos (Sound forest) of "Provinciaal Domein Dommelhof is the biggest sound art collection in "public space in Europe. In the forest there are 15 "sound installation pieces by artists such as Pierre Berthet, "Paul Panhuysen, Geert Jan Hobbijn ("Staalplaat Soundsystem), Hans van Koolwijk, and others. Yearly in "Kortrijk there is the sound art festival Wilde Westen (formerly known as Happy New Ears). In Bruxelles there are QO2 and Overtoon, two organisations that run "artist-in-residence programs and organize events. "Logos Foundation from "Ghent is a sound art org run by "Godfried-Willem Raes.
Originally from Amsterdam, but moved to Berlin is "Staalplaat, a record label focused on sound art and "experimental music. "Transmediale is a yearly festival focused on "media art, covering many sound art performances and installations.
The Dutch sound art tradition started more or less in the "Philips Natuurkundig Laboratorium where "Dick Raaijmakers worked in the 60s. "Paul Panhuysen and "Remko Scha developed many early sound art pieces in the 70s and 80s and set up the "Apollohuis in "Eindhoven. "STEIM. "WORM, "Extrapool are active organisations that have sound art activities. Trained by Gottfried Michael Koenig, Jaap Vink, Werner Kaegi, Paul Berg and Stan Tempelaars at the Institute of Sonology Utrecht, Roland Kuit is considered a pioneer of the art form generally referred to as “sound installation” and teached sound art at the Vrije Academie Den Haag in the 90's. Roland introduced audio art to the installation space transitioning sound concepts from the traditional speaker boxes into 'sonic spaces'. Polderlicht was a sound art festival running from 2000–2015. iii (Instrument Inventors innitiative]] is a "The Hague based organisation focused on the creation of sound art pieces. The organisation has an active "artist-in-residence program and continuously invites sound artists to make new works at their location. The Netherlands have three academies where you can study in the direction of sound art "Institute of Sonology, Art Science at "Royal Academy of Art, The Hague and at the "Utrecht School of the Arts in Utrecht.
"Lydgalleriet (The Soundgallery) is a non-commercial gallery for sound based art practices, situated in the centre of Bergen.
A known sound art pieces in the UK are "Blackpool High Tide Organ and "Singing Ringing Tree. Although not build as sound art pieces, the UK has several "acoustic mirrors along the coastline often explored by "field recorders.