Article Number: 348
Hard Cover, German, Staple Binding, 2006, de Appel
Rael Artel, Kathrin Jentjens, Claire Staebler


What happens when viewers become listeners?

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What happens when viewers become listeners?

Radiodays is a temporary radio station. Realizing a listening exhibition rethinks ways of art presentation. By using an auditive format, artistic works are presented within a space in succession of each other rather than simultaneously: they appear, disappear and reoccur. The choice of using radio at the same time attempts to give a voice to an actual concern towards the auditorial found in many works by visual artists.

Radio and its non-visual message offers creative resistance to the retinal spectacle that surrounds us. It has been said that radio is dying. But one could also say that radio is highly topical; an old, nostalgic means of communication, a pre-modern dream, a modernistic reality, a strong tool for connecting people, for bridging distances. With its outdated technological capacity and low-fi communicational power, radio is distinct from other high-tech and high-speed commercialized mediums that are highly influenced by the capitalist sphere of interest. Commercials, billboards, TV culture, and big screens on the street are also part of retinal consumption. Looking is a way to experience the omnipotence of the “society of spectacle”. Closing one's eyes is becoming an act of civil disobedience.

Artists and theorists are invited to produce new works, lend existing works or interpret them specifically for the radio broadcast. The project wants to investigate the relationship between hearing and imagination, processes of translation. Broadcasting live from inside De Appel, the exhibited works are not limited to the physical building. Art is coming home and can be enjoyed in private surroundings rather than only within the physical exhibition space.

Thus, the exhibition space is considered as the base for live debates and (inter)action. This radio “show room” will act as a driving force to materialise an audience. By treating radio as an alternative space, we open many others: medium-specific space for medium-specific art, space for interactivity, cooperative space, space for discussion, and space for negotiation. During Radiodays every listener becomes a dynamic and transformative carrier, a conceptual space of possibility and experimentation. As a non-material medium, radio brings a new potential to participants and audience by immediately bridging distances. Referring to the successive way of presentation — like in a movie theatre — Radiodays can be seen as a “cinema for the ears”. What do we see when we listen to the work?

Language: English