Angus Carlyle
Brighton — United Kingdom
Angus Carlyle is curious about how we make sense of the environments we inhabit. Sound is an important part of that curiosity but Angus also works through text and image. He edited the book ‘Autumn Leaves’ for publishing house Double Entendre (2007) and co-curated the accompanying compilation, which won the Qwartz Prize for Electronic Music. He made the sound work ‘51° 32 ' 6.954” N / 0° 00 ' 47.0808” W’ for the ‘Sound Proof’ group show (2008), a work that responded to the redevelopment of London’s Lower Lea Valley in advance of the Olympics. This was an important juncture for him personally, in part because it confirmed his interest in working within the confines of relatively small areas of land, in part because it was his first substantial commission. As the culmination of a long-term multi-disciplinary research project, he co-curated the exhibition ‘Sound Escapes’ at Space Gallery in London (2009). Later that year, he produced the CD ‘Some Memories of Bamboo’ for Gruenrekorder in 2009. For the last 18 months he has primarily been working on ‘Air Pressure’ with anthropologist Rupert Cox and scientist Kozo Hiramatsu. In 2011, he produced ‘Noli Me Tangere’, a soundwalk for Brighton Museum and Art Gallery that tried to bring the objects in the museum into acoustic life. At the turn of this year, he composed ‘Now Near Enough’ designed as an unobtrusive atmosphere to surround Edgar Martins’ photographic series ‘This Is Not A House’. Angus is a researcher and teacher at the University of the Arts, London, working with other sound artists in the CRiSAP Research Centre, which last year won the Sir Misha Black Award.
Description of work with field recording
I use microphones to record the sounds that I hear. I select fragments of those recordings and then, using little more than shifting volume settings, layer them into an approximate representation of the acoustic environment that I had previously spent time listening to. With some exceptions, I tend to structure my work so that the result evokes the plausible sense of place that might be delivered by a single microphone left to its own devices. That said, I might also deliberately leave small sonic artefacts of fabrication, the rustle of clothing, the buffeting of wind, my breath, things that hint at presence and the counterfeit. Some of my favourite recordings have been ones captured on very lo-fi equipment in relatively inhospitable conditions. Walking down a Beijing hutong with my Zoom H2 stuffed in my jacket pocket; my son carrying a Microtrack in his small hand as he talks me through a stroll through the wood that is 300 metres from our house.