Workshop 04: Laboratory Cultures of Sonic Experience and Historical and Contemporary Studio Techniques

Sound Studio of Hochschule der Künste Bern (HKB)

In thinking about the sound studio as an experimental system, the workshop is following the traces of the production of radiophonic knowledge: the experiments on hearing in the nineteenth century physiological laboratory – eg. by Hermann von Helmholtz –, the experimental physics of Heinrich Hertz that stood at the beginning of radio itself, the crucial acoustic research by the Bell Labs since the 1920s and the recurring figure of the experiment in the discourses on sonic aesthetics of the early german radio-play as well as in Pierre Schaeffer’s research into sound that was to be musique concrète.

But what does it actually mean to talk about laboratories and experimental systems in relation to music and sonic composition as in the BBC’s Radiophonic Workshop, the Studio GRM in Paris or the Studio für elektronische Musik in Köln when they are not scientific settings in a strict sense? How can the approaches and concepts that have been so successful in the history of science or the science and technology studies be made productive in the techno-aesthetic practices of the sound studio? Against the background of different approaches to the laboratory the workshop seeks to untie the spatial, institutional and technical arrangements of sonic exploration.



Ute Holl: Introduction

Jan Philip Müller: Recapitulation of the previous workshops


Conversation 1: How experiments can happen: Concepts and Methodologies

Jan Philip Müller: Radio Installation as Experimental Set-Up; Tatiana Eichenberger: Experiments between Art and Science; Tatiana Eichenberger: Engineer or Composer? Pierre Schaffer and his Experiments


Conversation 2: Musicians and technologies between innovation and tradition

Antje Tumat: Opening Questions: Innovation & authorship in radiophonic composition; Erik Oña & Simone Conforti: Composer and Experiment.


Conversation 3: Architectures & Devices

Tobias Gerber: Studio Systems/Studio Archictectures; Michael Harenberg: The Studio as Hybrid Sonic Space (Studio Tour)


Keynote Lecture/Discussion

Wolfgang Hagen (Lüneburg): The Radio Experiment in Digital Culture