The Listening Booth presents...

Estelle Woolley

1m58s ; 2016

A close engagement with the environment is at the core of Woolley’s research. The act of closely looking at the world around us is pertinent to the philosophy of Heidegger; the idea of paying attention to the things that we might normally disregard. This circumspective approach to looking parallels the idea of listening. Salome Voegelin describes “an aesthetic and philosophy of sound art” as an act of engaging with the world “…based on the discovering drive… a drive to knowing”.

The ‘capturing’ of sounds within the environment is integral to the making process. Using a makeshift parabolic dish and a dictaphone, Woolley adopts an attitude of openness to being in the world, absorbing environmental sounds which spark inspiration. Often quiet, contemplative sounds such as drips, egg shells, grasshoppers, purring, even the sound of a ticking mechanical valve are just some of the sounds featured in Woolley’s sound based practice. The sounds are kept as close to the original recordings as possible to highlight the beauty in the everyday.

For ‘The Listening Booth; Collection 2’, Woolley presents the curious sound of a saucepan lid as it had just been removed from the dishwasher. Its unexpected chirps and ticks which alternate in tempo remind us of a Geigercounter.