About the Project:
Most people agree that this is the Information Age, but if you close your eyes and listen, it becomes clear that it is also the Age of Noise. We are constantly bombarded with hums, buzzes, whines, traffic, ventilation systems, disc drives, cell phones, sirens, aircraft, muzak, televisions, radios, car alarms, leaf blowers, jack hammers, compressors — biproducts of an overheated visual culture. It’s no surprise that many people withdraw from our public hearing space and retreat into ipods or buildings with windows that don’t open. Our project intends to empower our sense of hearing and deconstruct this sea of noise. In transforming this barrage of sounds into information about the way we live, the piece attempts to restore harmony and balance to our senses.
Anthropologist and poet David Guss invited sound artist, Bruce Odland to create “Harmony in the Age of Noise.” Along with sculptor Mark McNamara and media artist Michael Luck Schneider, they will collaborate with over 80 undergraduates and grad students as well as professors and staff at Tufts University. Together they are designing and building a sonic observation post that will allow visitors to navigate through sound maps of the campus and surrounding community. Harmony in the Age of Noise will be a parabolic gazebo where the hub of students and traffic are harmonized through a mix of a real time feed, a collection of stored psychoacoustic maps, and visitors’ sounds programmed to play like hourly chimes.