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Remnant Breath: A Sound Walk / Performance by Leah Barclay (AU) and Keith Armstrong (AU)  in collaboration with Jo Tito (NZ).

Remnant Breath is an interactive sound walk created for EcoSapiens, New Zealand in January 2011 featuring a live performance from Jo Tito. EcoSapiens is an initiative of SCANZ; which is New Zealand’s premier art, technology, culture and ecology event and involves a symposium, creative residency, and public events and exhibitions. The project itself was developed as part of the Remnant Emergency Artlab, which is a government funded interdisciplinary research project pivoting on site-specific cultural exchange labs across the globe.

The intention of the work was to reveals remnant sonic layers in the Tehenui rainforest walkway leading to the ocean in New Plymouth, New Zealand. Through a 20min immersive experience the work explored stories of water, breath, place and the Maori concept of interconnection and the environment. Remnants (of land, animal life or cultures) really offer us a warning – because they signal both loss and disconnection and the need for urgent action. So by inviting an acute sensitisation to place solely through the often ignored senses of sound, a powerful context was created for these experiences and conversations. The audience was guided blindfolded down the walkway in small groups to a final live performance from Jo Tito. The natural soundscapes of the Tehenui rainforest walkway were layered with various speakers featuring short compositions by Leah Barclay developed during the residency. This project explored the idea of creating a site-specific linear composition and guiding the audience through the experience. 

Listen to a sample from the sound walk –