Featured Sound Artist: Susan Philipsz

I chose Susan Philipsz because she sounds a bit like one of my favorite musical artists, Enya. She creates her sounds using her own voice against various pieces of architecture which allow for ethereal sound distortion. She installs speakers in strategic points at a public location and then plays her sounds as an outside installation. Thus allowing the public to engage with the architecture in a new way. Through her art she is trying to help the audience engage more introspectively and authentically with the space.

She samples from various other musical influences including David Bowie and various folk tunes for her recordings. She is Glaswegian and was the first sound artist to win a Turner prize in 2010, SURROUND ME: A Song Cycle for the City of London.

Philipsz’s work can be found in the collections of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, The Tate in London, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, DC, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid, Baltimore Museum of Art, Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany, Carnegie Museum of Art, Castello di Rivoli in Italy, and the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis.

hear her work here


Honorable Mention:

The song ‘I Question mark’ is one which has consistently impressed me through the years. I first experienced this song through a piece of choreography by Wade Robson on the show ‘So You Think You Can Dance’, about 10 years ago. I believe the choreographer Wade Robson was the one to mix this track, though there is very limited information available about it’s creation. This song is rumored to be based originally off of a Michael Jackson track. It combines a various of traffic related noises to a beat and some ambient sounds. I think that it does an excellent job of showing how sounds can be organized to become music.

Hear ‘I Question Mark’ here.

See a solo by the dancer ‘Twitch’ from season 4 of the ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ reality show competition here.

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