AS ABOVE NOT BELOW, 2016 (Artefact commission)

© Courtesy: the artists

AS ABOVE NOT BELOW, 2016 (Artefact commission)

Wesley Goatley & Georgina Voss

As Above Not Below is an immersive installation which materialises the presence of the unseen infrastructure of international airspace, and the movement of vessels across it, which surround Belgium. Live data is gathered from planes as they pass nearby, revealing their physical attributes as well as their international identity. This data is transformed into an ambisonic sound installation and large projected visualisation map of the surrounding area on the gallery floor. The data is intercepted live via radio transmissions from the vessels, creating a form of direct access enabled by recent developments in open source software and software defined radio (SDR).

The soundscapes are composed using Air Traffic Control (ATC) transmissions from control centres and towers assigned to planes that are approaching Leuven from countries where we have been granted access to these recordings, including Belgium's Belgocontrol. Vessels approaching from other counturies are represented by external sounds of plane engines, exposing the gaps present in this data.  The data visualisations enable exploration of the friction between the materiality and topology of ‘physical’ state boundaries and their location in the air.

Logistical and regulatory infrastructures are often designed to be hidden and out of sight, with the immaterial qualities of air further exacerbating this invisibility. As Above Not Below reveals the movements, patterns, functions and politics of the interweaving logistical and regulatory infrastructure running through the airspace above Leuven, inviting insight into their presence and operation.

Wesley Goatley (UK) & Georgina Voss (UK)

Wesley Goatley is a sound artist and researcher in critical data aesthetics. His work examines how the presence and politics of 'hidden' and immaterial technological systems can be addressed through artworks, talks, and performance.  His research combines aesthetic processes with data to produce opportunities for critical analyses of culture and power. Goatley is a researcher at the Digital Humanities Lab, University of Sussex, and teaches code-based sonic and visual arts practices at the British & Irish Modern Music Institute.

Georgina Voss is a technology anthropologist. Her work explores the interplay of technology practices, the political and infrastructural systems underpinning them, and spatial elements of these relationships. In her design practice she uses experiential and material approaches to examine these issues, including installations, objects, hardware toolkits, films, and images. Voss is a co-founder of the research co-operative Strange Telemetry; and teaches design and politics at Goldsmiths, University of London. 

9 - 21 Feb 2016



Opening 9 Feb 19:30 – 23:00

10 -21 Feb

We - Sa 14:00 – 22:00

Su - Tu 14:00 – 19:00 

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