Sound installation and music-route in the streets of Old Montreal
Commissioned by Kim Sawchuk for Montreal’s Nuit Blanche 2012
I created this interactive “music-route” (a variation on the concept of an “audio walk”) and 4 channel sound installation using recordings of Montreal’s sewer system, the streets of the Old Port, and rivers and streams of the province of Quebec. The work explores Montreal’s lost rivers, watercourses that once flowed through the city but have since been diverted and buried underground, often incorporated into the sewer system. Listening on a smart phone while walking near the trajectory of one of these rivers – La Petite St. Pierre – participants hear a variety of spaces and sounds converge in a musical composition that also incorporates the live sounds made by listeners as they move through the street. The music-route playfully invites listeners to imagine the multiple layers (historical, geographical, physical etc.) that constitute the forgotten pathway of La Petite St. Pierre, and it leads to the Phi Centre where the 4 channel sound work is installed. The sound installation creates an immersive soundscape in which sounds from above ground are processed with reverberation recorded in the sewer system below ground, transforming the spatial organization and sonic materiality of the city.
River Flow, Sewer Flow, Street Flow was exhibited along with Andrew Emond’s collection of underground exploration photo-video hybrids, Source Points, as part of the Nuit Blanche exhibition Lost Rivers: La Petite St. Pierre at DHC-Art and the Phi Centre.