Capture All: A Sonic Investigation Cohort
We are delighted to announce the six participants of Capture All: A Sonic Investigation – Aasma Tulika, Joel Spring, Shareeka Helalludin, Suvani Suri, Thomas Smith and Uzma Falak. This project is a collaboration between Liquid Architecture (Melbourne) and Sarai (Delhi), supported by the Australia Council for the Arts.
AASMA TULIKA is interested in moments that disturb belief systems, and how apparatuses of control operate in such encounters experienced in everyday life. Her practice locates technological infrastructures as sites to unpack the ways in which power embodies, affects and moves narrative making processes. It is through a form of prodding narratives that circulate on social networks and mass media that she attempts to draw out experiences of ideological disorientation and slips. Her recent work explores the relationship between language and communication, and looks at the ways in which computational systems interpret language and participate in processes of social interaction and conditions of knowledge production. She was recently a fellow at the Home Workspace Program 2019-2020, Ashkal Alwan, Lebanon. Her work has appeared in Abr Circle and Restricted Fixations publication, and has participated in the Undivided Mind III – Art + Science program, KHOJ International Artists Association; HH Art Spaces, Goa; InOctober School, International Network for Contemporary Public Art. She has been a recipient of the Inlaks Fine Arts award and the Art Jameel Research and Practice Platform grant. She currently lives and works in Delhi.
JOEL SPRING is a Wiradjuri man raised between Redfern and Alice Springs with a practice based in architecture and interdisciplinary research. Currently, he is undertaking an MArch Research thesis at UTS that considers ongoing colonisation as both a geo-and-meta-physical event that locates materiality (and its materialising affects) as a critical site wherein ideas of race and extractive practices are trafficked through aesthetics and narration.
SHAREEKA HELALUDDIN is an experimental artist and community facilitator interested in the sonic, written word and performance; currently working on unceded Gadigal Country. Creating under the pseudonym akka, her sound practice explores temporality, drone, dissonance, archive, memory and a pursuit of deep listening. Her practice is informed by the lineage, theories and sounds of her mixed Tamil-Bengali, multi faith upbringing. Here, she utilises soundscapes as an optic through which she can explore senses of self and connectivity. Also a DJ, akka gathers warped global club with found sounds, in an attempt to unhinge expectations of form and aesthetic. She conjures a politicised understanding of the club that foregrounds the movement and joy of marginalised bodies. Her work also oscillates between lived and imagined experiences, interested in creating a tension between personal and theoretical. Whilst she has spent time exploring and writing within the realms of queer and feminist theories, studies of diaspora, digital humanities and speculative non-fiction; she is drawn to destablisising knowledge systems, learning to listen and defer to bodily and alternative ways of understanding. She has shared and collaborated on work as part of Digital Writers Festival, MCA’s Art Bar, First Draft Gallery, Verge Gallery, Parramatta Artist Studios, Sydney University Journal of Musicology as well as graduating from fbi Radio’s music mentorship program Dance Class. She has also co-facilitated anti-racism workshops and publications, and currently serves on the Hashim Advisory Committee for Aurora Group NSW. Having recently begun her studies into therapy, she hopes to move towards a healing practice that explores somatics, care and sonic expression as a means of liberation for communities who have been maligned by dominant and problematic structures of mental health. By coalescing creativity and therapy, she also hopes to decentre institutionally-bound art to more sustainable, community-orientated pursuits.
SUVANI SURI is an artist and researcher currently based in Delhi, India. She works with sound and intermedia assemblages and has been exploring various modes of transmission such as podcasts, auditory texts, sonic environments, maps, objects, installations, workshops and live interventions. Actively engaged in thinking through the techno-political processes that listening is embedded in, her curiosity about the spectral qualities of sound lends itself to the uncanny acoustic constructions, often found in her work. She is drawn towards generating chronicles of absurd sonic instances while recomposing the concepts, histories, fictions, myths, sensations and intensities that the aural carries and reveals. A graduate of the New Media Design programme (2014) from the National Institute of Design, India, she has been a component of several interdisciplinary practices, alternating between the roles of an artist, assembler, designer, educator, researcher and sound-producer. Her work has been exhibited at Khoj Studios (2014), 4th Kochi-Muziris Biennale (2018), Mumbai Art Room (2018), Sound Reasons Festival VI (2018) and Khoj Curatorial Intensive South Asia (2019). As part of an artists’ collective, she co-conceived and realised an online telephonic exhibition, Out of Line (2019). More recently, she was one of the artist-actants in Five Million Incidents, a program organised by Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan with the RAQS Media Collective (2020).
THOMAS SMITH is a Melbourne-based artist, musician and researcher. His practice combines performance, video, electronic music, speculative fiction, websites, curatorial projects and critical writing. Thomas’ work explores the tyranny and poetics of computational systems and other technology through eerie video assemblages, speculative texts, and live performances. Thomas’ work is concerned with the politics of creative economies, digital subjectivities, planetary futures, generic digital aesthetics, ambivalent affect and music as a mode of critical inquiry. Thomas is also one half of music production duo Utility, and runs an independent record label called Sumactrac with Jarred Beeler (DJ Plead) and Jon Watts. Thomas has completed a PhD through UNSW Art & Design, and teaches in the School of Design and Social Context at the RMIT Melbourne. Thomas’ works have been exhibited and/or performed at institutions such as the Museum of Contemporary Art (Sydney), Unsound Festival (Poland), National Gallery of Victoria (Melbourne), Central Academy of Fine Arts (Beijing), Nasjonalmuseet (Oslo), Floating Projects (Hong Kong), Goldsmiths College (London), Firstdraft Gallery (Sydney), Queensland University Art Museum (Brisbane), Alaska Projects (Sydney) and Blindside Gallery (Melbourne). Thomas’ writing has been published in Realtime Magazine, Runway Journal, Un Magazine and Plates Journal.
UZMA FALAK is a DAAD Doctoral Fellow at the University of Heidelberg where she is pursuing her PhD in Anthropology. Her poetry, essays, articles and reportage have appeared in The Baffler Magazine, Adi Magazine, Al Jazeera English, Warscapes, The Caravan, Himal Southasian, Kindle Magazine, Jadaliyya, Anthropology and Humanism, The Economic and Political Weekly, Himalaya Journal, The Electronic Intifada, The Palestinian Chronicle, New Internationalist including anthologies and collections like Gossamer: An Anthology of Contemporary World Poetry, Of Occupation and Resistance: Writings from Kashmir, Cups of Nunchai, among others. She won an Honourable Mention in the Society for Humanistic Anthropology’s Ethnographic Poetry Award. She was also an invited artist-scholar at the 2018 Warwick Tate Exchange held at the Tate Modern where she deployed sound, film and embroidery as forms of inquiries. Through intergenerational narratives, archival photographs, grassroots’ memory practices, poems and women’s songs, her documentary film Till Then The Roads Carry Her explores Kashmir women’s lifeworlds and repertories of resistance as alternate epistemes and seeks to disrupt the official histories and exoticised iconographies. It has been screened at the 2nd Annual Memory Studies Association Conference (University of Copenhagen), The 24th European Conference on South Asian Studies (University of Warsaw), Karlstorkino (Heidelberg), Tate Modern (London), CineDiaspora Film Festival (New York), School of Arts and Aesthetics (JNU), 12th IAWRT Asian Women’s Film Festival (New Delhi) and Open Frame Film Festival and Forum 2015 (New Delhi) among others.
About Capture All: A Sonic Investigation
How might experimental practices of sound and listening be mobilised as resources for understanding and intervening in questions of power, capture, and extraction? What aesthetic and political possibilities emerge by investigating sonic practices in relation to both domestic and urban space and their network interfaces?
From April to August 2021, Liquid Architecture (Melbourne) and Sarai (Delhi) will collaborate to support six artists, scholars, and writers based in India and Australia through a series of creative and critical workshops, intensives, and dialogues. Capture All sets out to investigate the sonic at a moment of accelerating surveillance capitalism that enmeshes individuals and communities in networks of capture and control.
This opportunity is contextualised and grounded in Sarai’s pioneering work on critical questions of media and information, urbanism, infrastructure, media archaeology, data and law, the commons, and the public domain in South Asia, and in Liquid Architecture’s ongoing research project ‘Machine Listening, a curriculum’, a critical platform for writing, interviews, music and artworks investigating the dystopian and utopian effects of algorithmic, machinic, networked and technologised listening on our social and political lives.
The Capture All program extends and departs from Sarai and Liquid Architecture’s work via research curators Laura McLean (Liquid Architecture) and Mehak Sawhney’s (Sarai) interests in forms of sonic capture in settler-colonial and post-colonial contexts. Capture All will consider Australia and India’s complex relationships to coloniality and extraction, and contemporary sonic transformations across physical and digital spaces in both countries. Within these contexts, we are interested in the ways user data is extracted, exploited, monetised, and used to govern user behaviour. Equally we are also interested in public and private sound; evolving uses of mobile phones and social media; the idea and reality of the ‘smart city’; uses of voice interfaces, biometrics, and sonic databases; forms of forensic listening; the economics of data-labour and listening-labour; the production and politics of artificial intelligence; music cultures and streaming; new acoustic ecologies; and sound and listening as modes of evasion and resistance.
In the midst of the profound mediatisation and turbulence of interpersonal relations – particularly in the wake of pandemic-induced lockdowns that have altered our online and offline, local and global engagements – this project aims to critically inhabit so-called ‘immaterial’ spaces and consider the value and agency of our online and offline togetherness.