Ecological Ambisonic Recordings 001: Rainforest

Exhibition Artists

James Benjamin
Danica Olders
Chipp Jansen

Exhibition Categories

The time accurate Ecological Ambisonic Sound Installation ‘EAR 001: Rainforest’ allows participants to step into an immersive experience of the Costa Rican rainforest. An algorithm interprets the ambisonic B format recording, recreating the sphere of sound in which the recording was initially made, and sending it to an array of speakers surrounding the visual installation. Lighting is simultaneously controlled to match the height of the sun at the time of day of the recording.

The visual composition of the installation structure makes textural references to the different experiences of the rainforest. Corrugated plastic roofing imitates most shelters, and a truck bench references the difficult and long journey to reach primary rainforest. It is easy to idealize the rainforest as a tropical paradise, but it is also dangerous and uncomfortable, filled with insects, dense brush, and poisonous plants and fruits.

These ambisonic sounds were recorded on the pacific slope of the Talamanca Mountains in Costa Rica, on the buffer zone of La Amistad International Peace Park and Biosphere Reserve. This area provides habitats for Costa Rican wildlife, and a crucial jaguar migration corridor. Jaguars, and other apex predators are imperative to the delicate balance of ecosystems threatened by overpopulation, clearcutting for farming, pollution, and poaching. Biodiversity loss is among the main challenges we have faced as humans. It is imperative to secure these habitats for wildlife so we can maintain, and hopefully improve our planet for all species, including ourselves. By listening to these sounds, we hope you will appreciate the incredible life that still occurs in these unique tropical mountains, and how important it is to protect it.

Partner Organizations: ProCAT, Arizona Centre for Nature Conservation, The Mikelberg Foundation, Breakglass Studios

Virtual Opening April 30th, 6pm EST on the Spring Vernissage Facebook event.

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