ACOUSTICAQUATICA

Acousticaquatica is an underwater art experiment dedicated to exploring the relationship between humans, technology, sounds and fish. It is intended to provoke contemplation about how sounds underwater affect fish and other marine life. Using a videocamera to track the fishes’ movement in a large square-shaped aquarium, the movement of the fish swimming triggers sounds to play back to the fish underwater, generating an undulating ever-evolving living sonic composition.

A set of speakers plays the sounds in the gallery space for the human viewers to listen to the organically evolving composition.

Field recordings taken from nature: sounds of the Ocean, rushing water, waves, river dolphins, and birds, are juxtaposed with “human sounds” recorded and synthesized sounds of civilization – fishing nets, jackhammers, music, people talking, walking, laughing, whispering.

This project brings forth a number of fundamental questions: Will the fish learn to swim to trigger the sounds they like and avoid the ones they don’t? Which sounds will they prefer? Do fish prefer silence, jazz, or techno?

In Acousticaquatica, through interactivity and motion, a school of neon tetras become the conductors of an underwater orchestra of natural and human sounds. Through movement the fish function as creators and listeners. In this way, the work can be thought of as a living sonic sculpture.

Shown at :

  • Les Territoires as a part of De La Nature (2013)
  • Maison des Arts De Laval as a part of the Exposition L’art Est Vivant (2017)

Both exhibitions were curated by Anne-Marie Belley