Mobile Radio

art project by Sarah Washington & Knut Aufermann

MUNICH October 2008

October 29, 2008 by Mobile Radio

The Bosch Experience played at the t-u-b-e Klanggalerie and Sarah and Knut played a trio with Gunter Pretzel at Galerie Dagmar Behringer

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Our set-up for the trio at the gallery






Knut and Gunter soundcheck. It turned out to be a very nice concert

















How does this work?





Spot the mistake. One of these buildings is an actual church. We stumbled across this amazing display of public art on a day out


Here you can see the simulated church in the foreground (below Munich stadium), and the ancient church hiding in the trees on the right


We stopped off at this hill to catch sight of the alps, as there was a föhn which produces the optical illusion of zooming the alps in to the edge of the city. Munich shows itself to be tidy and flat. It also has a beautiful wild river running through the centre of it

t-u-b-e Klanggalerie


Tuba in the t-u-b-e


Soundchecking. Perhaps time for a little background. Børre (tuba) is a masterful Nowegian musician, member of No Spaghetti Edition, No, Gutvik, Circulasione Totale Orchestra, My Midnight Creeps, and bardal caminada mølstad trio. Gunter (viola) is a member of the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra, Debussy-Trio München, and he has a solo project called peltzer-pv. He works alongside Michael in a duo called Violet Cab. Michael (live processing) has a rich history in electronic music and computing. In 1973 he was a member of the group Amon Düül II and from the mid 70s ’til the mid 90s he developed sofware and hardware for music computing. He currently works as a music producer at his studio Plan Blue















Trying out various speaker combinations with the excellent surround-sound system


Resting: Viola, Knut, Tuba, Børre

LANDSHUT October 2008

October 25, 2008 by Mobile Radio

Landshut concert for The Bosch Experience: Gunter Pretzel, Michael Feller, Børre Mølstad, Knut Aufermann and Sarah Washington






The room was nicely atmospheric for the first public performance of this group. We had last been together in Michael’s studio back in the summer of 2006

















Setting up. Spot the improv clock

BRUSSELS October 2008

October 4, 2008 by Mobile Radio

Oscillatomium at the Atomium in Brussels as part of the White Nights festival


We hosted a night of radio art in the Ilya Prigogine sphere. Prigogine was awarded his 1977 Nobel prize for chemistry for his explanation of oscillation in chemical reactions










The phenomenon of oscillation was our theme for a night of radio broadcasting live from the Atomium in Brussels at the Nuit Blanche festival. Oscillatomium showcased electronic music from the memorable and influential Expo ’58 in Brussels and live performances by exponents of today’s experimental electronic music scene. Original works for radio were offered by an intriguing array of international radio artists


The belly of the beast








We set up a temporary radio studio and performance space. Our live broadcast in London, Lisbon, New York and Brussels featured commissioned radio works from Ian Helliwell, Wendy Van Wynsberghe, Johnny Head-in-Air, Élise Meriau and Ricardo Reis




Knut tests the PA, Dinah Bird performs









Our other guests: Jacques Foschia, Jean-Philippe Renoult, Élise Meriau, and martiensgohome. As the night wore on the wind blew stronger, and the Atomium rocked..!

LISBON September 2008

September 21, 2008 by Mobile Radio

We set off for the Radia meeting and radio festival in Lisbon – RadiaLx 2008 International Radio Art Festival. We also do a Tonic Train performance and present the results of our Mobile Radio adventures at the Goethe-Institut


We step off the train to be placed directly on air at Radio Zero


As the other participants dribble in there is a late-night madcap broadcast from the home of Ricardo Reis (in white)


Much fun is had by utilizing everything we can lay our hands on to make radio. The collective spirit is strong


An important aspect of this get-together is a meeting of the radio art network Radia. The rest of the festival programme was jam-packed with action for a week, so we needed a chart to remind us where we were supposed to be!


Several performances, discussions and debates take place at the Goethe-Institut. Tetsuo Kogawa gives his radio transmitter building performance


The next outside broadcast is done on a ferry crossing the river Tagus, on our way to a sardine lunch


Ah Lisbon! Plenty of time and perfect weather for a broadcast picnic. Here Paulo Raposo chats to (L-R) João c Pinto, Jay Needham and Patrick McGinley


Two nights of performances were held at Fábrica Braço de Prata. Top: Mike Cooper’s live radio play, right: Anna Friz and her multi-transmission performance. Bottom: In the secluded garden of the Goethe-Institut a screening of the film Ich möchte kein Mann sein with sound effects from Xentos ‘Fray’ Bentos and live narration by Alexandra Varela from a text by herself and Ricardo Reis


There are many performances during the festival. Here Sarah and Ricardo join in the Radio Game devised by Xentos ‘Fray’ Bentos. Many radios come to a sudden end due to a combination of lousy luck and lousy sporting skills


We can’t leave Portugal without….. a day at the beach

DANUBE September 2008

September 13, 2008 by Mobile Radio

We were invited to take part in the European Sound Delta project. One boat sailed up the Rhine, the other made its way from the Black Sea delta up the Danube to meet the other boat in Strasbourg. Artists were invited to do residencies along the route. We decided to sail from Linz to Nuremberg and collaborate with the sound artists Dinah Bird And Jean-Philippe Renoult. The reason this stretch of the river interested us the most was because it holds the deepest locks in Europe in the Main-Danube Canal, as the waterway traverses the heights of the European Watershed. We wanted to perform and record on the boat whilst riding up and down the locks. The journey was not without its problems, however we were thrilled to take part in what turned out to be the trip of a lifetime

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Linz is in the throws of Ars Electronica when we arrive. We are unexpectedly delayed for a few days, so we take in some of the attractions. Radio Fro host an interesting series of events, and our friends from Vienna, Noid and Skylla perform. Luckily we manage to catch “the benchmark consort”, a degenerative work for laptops by the Cologne artist Hans W. Koch. There is time to make some microphone tests under the bridge


Sarah’s deep joy on the trip was to be found on the deck of the Ange-Gabriel as we left our berth each day before dawn: sipping the silence of the world as the sun reconstructs it








There was much beauty to be seen en route, from the glorious Austrian hills to the wonderous German cities of Passau (City of Three Rivers) and Regensburg. We also enjoyed the bridges, and our fitting departure point in the industrial outskirts of Nuremberg


The crux of the trip was not the pleasure of slowly cruising along, but to get on and make recordings. We tried different sounds and styles of performance in the locks to see what worked best








Here is a bit of everyday boat life, taking it easy with our dedicated project crew Eve, Vincent and Philip, and Michel our captain. Boat pace suits us fine


Dinah records Michel, so we can play his voice into a lock









Our equipment: various recording devices, microphones, megaphones and battery operated instruments. Just as well we are largely self-sufficient as the electricity supply onboard is decidedly dodgy


An early morning industrial wonderland








Locks, locks and more locks


We save up some electricity for Knut to perform a solo concert on a large PA. Dinah gets in the mood for her vocal performance






Jean-Philippe plays harmonica into the depths. These locks are utterly awesome


We interact with passersby and boat captains. Sarah makes it her mission to get a wave back from absolutely anybody. It works







Some curiosities. Walhalla, would you believe. A true Bavarian wolpertinger. A rare fuel ship. The discovery of the journey – floating bollards. In one lock we simply recorded these as they made a beautiful creaking surround-sound symphony


Our motorway berth, after a difficult stretch of river which slowed us to walking speed. A long day’s work for the captain and pilot







We popped a lot of balloons (to capture impulse responses), recorded from all over the barge, waited for locks and spent all our spare time hanging out on deck. Ahhhh…..


Sunrise, wildlife, gently rocking on water. You can’t ask for more








Did we mention the huge scary locks?

COLOGNE May 2008

May 29, 2008 by Mobile Radio

We were invited to give a two-day Mobile Radio workshop at The Academy of Media Art Cologne (KHM). There was also a chance to perform a Tonic Train concert in the university theatre


Our workshop group, with their tutor Echo Ho (centre), exploring the possibilities of the radio transmitters they had built with Martin Nawrath (right)


We organized a live talk for the students from Tetsuo Kogawa in Japan. It’s impossible to tell if he is really there, as he only shows his empty chair… We hear him ‘showing’ us examples to illustrate his fascinating lecture


More hands-on action, in preparation for the live radio show we have arranged as part of the workshop


Our host at the excellent radio station Köln Campus is Johanna Bächer


We talk about our music and radio work, then play a short live concert…


…along with the workshop participants and their radio transmitters


Knut sound-checking for our concert in the KHM theatre. It was a nice concert – helped by a really useful PA, and a warm audience comprising members of the local Cologne experimental music scene


We tagged along with the KHM trip to the Waves exhibition in Dortmund, where we visited a workshop on optical sound by Derek Holzer


Outside Waves at Phoenix Halle Dortumnd

NEWCASTLE/SUNDERLAND March 2008

March 8, 2008 by Mobile Radio


Knut was asked to run a radio station for the the AV festival from Discovery Museum in Newcastle and also lend a hand for Soundscape FM in Sunderland. He invited Sarah, Dinah Bird and Jean-Philippe Renoult to join him. Round the clock for 10 days we broadcast radio art, experimental music, AV festival guests, live sound art, radio serials, stories, live streams from the Radia network and whatever else took our fancy. The nights were filled with the evolving sounds of Knut’s feedback installation


The interior of the museum, whose staff deserve a special mention for making our stay so easy and enjoyable. Here Honor Harger gives the opening speech to launch the radio station


Sarah explains the set-up to the Lord Mayor and listens to his radio tales


Dinah Bird interviews Honor


The rest of our crew – Jean-Philippe Renoult, Knut Aufermann, Sarah Washington


Studio life – Staalplaat Sound-system’s Geert-Jan Hobijn (top left) and Carsten Stabenow (bottom left). Mark Vernon playing live (top right) and an interview with Tao G. Vrhovec Sambolec (bottom centre)


Atau Tanaka (top left), radio art students from ISIS Arts (top right), Elizabeth Zimmermann from Kunstradio (bottom left) and our trio with Rhodri Davies (bottom right)


In conversation with Tetsuo Kogawa (top left) and Ed Baxter (bottom right, in stripes, dreaming?)


Looking into the studio from without, inside improvisation from Adam Parkinson and Bennett Hogg


Looking out from the studio at Yuko Mohri and her work Bairdcast Media: A History of Machine Translation


We can’t leave Newcastle without acknowledging the most striking aspects of it’s culture and beauty. Spiritual home of freeze-yer-arse-off nightlife…..


And magnificent bridges

GLASGOW February 2008

February 15, 2008 by Mobile Radio

The second night of the Self-Cancellation tour was held at The Arches underneath Glasgow central station. It was part of the Instal festival of experimental music, sound and performance. Other Self-cancellation events were going on such as seminars and a discussion at The Glasgow School of Art


Sarah’s double helping of ear protection, to ensure that she couldn’t hear herself playing


Lee Patterson, Benedict Drew, Rhodri Davies and John Butcher at the rehearsals


Chris Weaver and John Bain compare devices


The remains of Rhodri’s destroyed harp


Robin Hayward, who performed a piece whilst his tuba filled up with sand


Michael Colligan happy to be messing with dry ice and hot metal


Mark Bain at the main board piling up an intense building vibration, an earth tremor in sound guided by himself and John Bain


Arika organizer Barry Esson debriefs with LMC organizer Ben Drew


Mystical goings on at The Glasgow School of Art with the luminescent hand of John Bain and Arika’s wistful Bryony McIntyre

LONDON February 2008

February 9, 2008 by Mobile Radio

Rhodri Davies, inspired by and in collaboration with Gustav Metzger brought together a collection of musicians to look at ways in which music and sound can cancel itself out, can auto-destruct during performance. The first Self-Cancellation concert was held at Beaconsfield in Lambeth, commissioned by Arika & the London Musicians’ Collective and developed with Beaconsfield – part of a series of events including talks and radio works


Something to cheer Sarah up before her scary solo. She decided to cancel a crucial part of herself out for her performance – her ears. She didn’t want to hear what she played, and she also cast the space into darkness so that she couldn’t see what she was doing. All she was aware of was the thumping of her heart and the rushing of blood


The collaborative work for the concert was called Sudoku and was conceived by Rhodri Davies. A succession of sudoku puzzles were projected on a screen, with each square lit up in succession. The players were assigned numbers – they could play when their number appeared until it appeared again, and so on throughout the piece


A peep at the safety precautions that were needed to carry out Gustav Metzger’s Acid on Nylon


The dissolving nylon was projected onto a screen, with light sensors attached to transform the squirming image into sound


Open the doors and evacuate the audience, don’t let them see the scary men behind the screen!

COLOGNE January 2008

January 1, 2008 by Mobile Radio

Instead of celebrating New Year in the traditional manner, we instead make a piece for Arts Birthday on behalf of Radio Kinesonus in Japan. We play alongside the celebrations – for electronics and fireworks


Our recording set-up. The piece can be heard at Radio Kinesonus


View from the microphone on the balcony