New Disquietude podcast episode: music by Lesley Flanigan, Dave Seidel, KMRU, Celia Hollander, and John Hooper; interview with Flanigan; commentary; short essay on reading waveforms. • Disquiet.com F.A.Q.Key Tags: #saw2for33third, #field-recording, #classical, #juntoElsewhere: Twitter, SoundCloud, Instagram

Listening to art. Playing with audio. Sounding out technology. Composing in code. Rewinding the soundscape.

What Sound Looks Like

An ongoing series cross-posted from instagram.com/dsqt


This is a detail of a phone, as painted by Andy Warhol. Like the work of Roy Lichtenstein, Warhol’s paintings often don’t translate well when reproduced. The situation is ironic since reproduction was the subject of so much of both men’s work. Printed on the page of a book or on a poster, a Lichtenstein study of moire patterns and the four-color printing process becomes far more perfect than it is in person, so perfect as to essentially eradicate the very inaccuracies in which it initially reveled. This image is a closeup of the side of the mouthpiece to a telephone. It’s from Warhol’s acrylic and pencil Telephone, which dates from 1961. I shot this, and some other angles of the original, at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles while on a brief vacation there this past December. From across the room you see a classic old phone caught head on, the earpiece atop a stately black column, the mouthpiece connected by a thick licorice cord. As you approach the painting, the black and white image reveals two different meanings of white. There’s the white of the blank background, against which the phone is situated, and then there’s the white on the phone itself. This latter white represents reflection. This second white looks white, but it’s black — it’s the black where the light hits the phone. Closer still and the details become all the more apparent: tentative tracings, light washes that reveal the pattern in the canvas, and cautious swirls meant to approximate the genuinely mechanical.

Additional images:

 
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An ongoing series cross-posted from instagram.com/dsqt.

By Marc Weidenbaum

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  • about

  • Marc Weidenbaum founded the website Disquiet.com in 1996 at the intersection of sound, art, and technology, and since 2012 has moderated the Disquiet Junto, an active online community of weekly music/sonic projects. He has written for Nature, Boing Boing, The Wire, Pitchfork, and NewMusicBox, among other periodicals. He is the author of the 33 1⁄3 book on Aphex Twin’s classic album Selected Ambient Works Volume II. Read more about his sonic consultancy, teaching, sound art, and work in film, comics, and other media

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    • December 13, 2022: This day marks the 26th anniversary of the founding of Disquiet.com.
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    • There are entries on the Disquiet Junto in the book The Music Production Cookbook: Ready-made Recipes for the Classroom (Oxford University Press), edited by Adam Patrick Bell. Ethan Hein wrote one, and I did, too.
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  • My book on Aphex Twin's landmark 1994 album, Selected Ambient Works Vol. II, was published as part of the 33 1/3 series, an imprint of Bloomsbury. It has been translated into Japanese (2019) and Spanish (2018).

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