June 2008

A short trip to Rome was a great opportunity to gather some unusual audio.

The audio taken from Santa Maria della Concezione and the crypt (below the church) was a surreal experience. As I walked into the church the blarring sound of the traffic disappeared behind me. I could hear the faint sound of people shuffling in their seats and the church bell chiming. I got up to walk to the front area and just as I did the people right at the front started to pray and chant, I quickly went back to my seat because I didnt want to intrude, but still sat to listen.

The crypt below the church presented a very uncomfortable and sad environment. The cold atmosphere and poignant music really affected its visitors, including myself- making me feel anxious and as if I were intruding. I managed to pick up the sound of the church bells and other visitors comments as they walked past me.

*Please listen to Santa Maria della Concezione and crypt via stereo headphones.  Approx 3.30 minutes

View from our hotel in Rome
The Crypt below Santa Maria della Concezione
Singing waiters in Rome

Lucy Stevens’ artistic practice examines the acoustic ecology of the natural environment, using field recording, digital illustration, performance and printmaking as a tool to visualise sound produced by wildlife, weather and other natural phenomena.

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