hyt-Looking-Outward-11: Sound Art

Live performance documentation of Samson Young’s Nocturne (2015)

For this week’s Looking Outward post, I found inspiration through Samson Young’s work of art. He is described as a rising sound artist based in Hong Kong and with a strong background in music composition. While he’s concentrated on the expression using sounds, he also incorporate them into live performances, visual drawings and films. The particular project that interested me was Nocturne (2015), a live performance that he conducted in team gallery, NYC. He sits in a position surrounded by drummer’s set, various instruments, found objects and connected amplifiers attached to the objects. A old television screen is also placed in front of him, playing muted footages of night bombings found on the Internet, most of which are US attacks in the middle east as well as ISIS gulf war, etc. He aims to improvise the explosion sounds with “foley technique” and broadcast it on a pirated radio frequency so that the audience could experience the performance using transportable radios. Since the found footages are political and pointing to the specific war-torn countries, the performance seems to be a playful yet sarcastic commentary toward the authority.

Even though the sound is mainly created by the artist, the computation element lies within the video footages, as it shows the frequency of the bombing and the artist aligns his action based off of the frequency. I think the imitation of everyday / common-heard sounds is definitely something I am interested in, and I wonder if it would be possible to recreate them by playing with the p5.sound library for future projects.


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