On what I walk to see...

"Objects do not have any intrinsic meaning- that meaning is conferred on them by us- and that different people, and the same person at different times, may confer different meanings on the same object." (Hammersley, 1989, p. 135)

Saturday, May 18, 2013

From Kurt Stallmann's senses and beyond--Taipei Sounds, Taipei Stories

I went to an event called "Taipei Sounds, Taipei Stories: Reflections of a Sound Artist" albeit the fact that I am really short in the department of art... if not culture in general.

I have met Dr. Kurt Stallmann (just realized that... wow... he has a wiki page) a few times before because I happened to go hang out with my former adviser when they were hanging out.  I know that he is a composer and a sound artist.  So, I heard the other day that he was going to have an event about the sounds of Taipei.  I was all excited and would like to go because... it's exceptionally nice to attend events performed by people you know.

Although I was told that the seating was very restricted... something like only 50 people allowed... it was not until when I was there today was I informed that they had to decline people's RSVP since yesterday because too many people had wanted to come.  Lucky me... an appendix to my former adviser's family... 8-X lol

The event took place at the Taiwan Music Institute (臺灣音樂館)... shamefully... though I have walked around the block so many a time, I didn't know of its existence until today... speaking of you don't see what you don't know.

The performance contained a combination of in-person auditory narration, recorded sounds, images and live-performance of traditional Chinese instruments (i.e., Pipa, Erhu, Yangqin).

One story I like the best is the story of a barking doggie outside of this Rido Cafe.  As we were sitting there listening to Dr. Stallmann retelling the story of that annoying loud dog barking outside of the cafe... there was the recording of the barking doggie and the other sounds in the background... whatever dasein a digital recording devise is capable of capturing... What a semi-in-situ experience... reminding me of them astronomy pictures like the one 3.6 billion light-years from Earth or in the eyes of the Hubble: Galaxies Across Space and Time.

In between Dr. Stallmann's presentation were the live performances... musicians playing traditional instruments like Pipa, Erhu and Yangqin... It might be the first time for me to listen to the playing of these instruments  live... not in the form of an orchestra... (at least 1/3 of the chance I think...)

猶抱琵琶半遮面 梁家寧... the performance of Pipa by musician 梁家寧
葉維仁on erhu (二胡) and 吳姿俞 on Yangqin (揚琴). Apparently, the musician 葉維仁is Dr. Stallmann's erhu teacher.
While the presentation itself incorporated the use of digital media, at some point, I found within the audience someone who took the notion to a different level... A form of the presentation unseen by the majority of the audience... sound waves themselves... in a presentation of a sound artist.

Look at the ever-changing sound waves on the screen... That gentleman is surely listening to the performance visually..
Next to the room where the presentation took place was another exhibition...  On the screen were pictures of ordinary buildings and their water towers (or simply water towers).  Interestingly, there were four plants on the table... placed at just the right place that their shadows were cast at the bottom of the screen... as the pictures with water towers were moving and changing... what remained constant were these shadows... making the presentation like an anime--to a certain point.

Then, at some point, I started talking to this gentleman in the room with a nice camera... who happened to be the photographer 游本寬 himself... He told me that the plaints were still in the water yesterday, brought to my attention the sound of water in the background, and explicated the theme of the exhibition... aqua 「水之二三事」(Something about Water).

A photograph of the photographer 游本寬 explaining his photographs to my former adviser at the exhibition  「水之二三事」(Something about Water).  The notion of my taking photographs of an expert is like... 魯班門前弄大斧... though I did do it in his back... lol
I have a liking for this quote Dr. Stallmann reiterated during this presentation... something his professor had him told... though not the exact words...

Shall what you don't understanding be considered as noise, how much noise can be tolerated before the meaning is lost?

Profound... eh....

After the event, I had to go and do some walk... Interestingly, as an appendix to my former adviser's family, I somehow found myself landed at the dining table with Dr. Stallmann's family and my former adviser's family.

So it concludes too many of them words limited de your missy appendix the lucky dog of the day... lol

It's very unfortunate that, because I was not sure whether video recording was allowed at this performance, I did not take video clips of the performance... and did not capture the sound part either... Knowing it was recorded by devices far more advanced than my grandpa canon.... I hope something might be uploaded somewhere sometime... so that I can simply show you the performance in liu of too many my words and still my pictures... (though... if I could make myself to steal some pix, why didn't I go all the way to take the clips?  Can't understand this head.  lol)

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