Explore how to introduce sound into your artistic practice.

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Witnesses, 2015 - by N.B Aldrich
Witnesses, 2015 – by N.B Aldrich

Sound as a material for creative practice has undergone a radical transformation, particularly since the mid-20th century, and so too have the ideas of how and why it is used. With the advent of recording and reproduction technologies, Music has been reconfigured and sound is now, in the 21st century, an important and significant aspect of art-making beyond the traditional ideas of music and sound design.

AI Sound creation and interaction with guests

This workshop is designed as a primer for introducing sound into artistic practice, including sound art and audio installation, electronic music composition, audio systems technology, and sonification practices. We will also examine artists and ideas that constitute the theoretical history of sound as artistic material including interactive and generative processes, audio collage, and soundscape studies. This exploration will include how sound art can interrelate with visual media such as photography, video, and text. 

Guided by N.B Aldrich, through lectures, listening sessions, readings and hands-on experience, students can expect to gain insight and understanding about the possibilities of sound as Art. This includes an introduction to listening practices (ear training), contemporary audio technologies such as the Digital Audio Workstation, field recording techniques and, most importantly, conceptualizing the application of sound into your work.

Art of Sound - Screen shot of Active Soundscape Designer

Art of Sound installation

The workshop is aimed at beginning to intermediate students and each participant can work to their comfort and skill level. Students can bring projects currently underway, create new projects, or critically investigate the ideas and artists working in the field. Students should be advised that both a laptop computer and a pair of quality headphones will be required. All required software will be freeware. 

Leave with a new understanding of concepts, tools and techniques to take your exploration of sound to the next level.

All images copyright N.B Aldrich.

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Instructor: N.B. Aldrich

N.B. Aldrich is a New Media artist, musician and educator residing in Sedgwick, Maine, USA, who creates installation, video, performance and acousmatic art. He is also a founding member of the Island Soundscape Project and performs with the experimental music trio Aldrich, Norton & Ross. Prof. Aldrich earned an MFA at Bennington College studying electronic music composition.

The work focuses on collecting, refining and redistributing information, both aesthetic and practical, across varying mediums, but focusing particularly on sound and audio. In the process, the methods and metaphors of the “information age” become instruments of their own critique.

He has had work shown internationally at such venues as Artists Space, Engine 27, the Banff Centre, the Casoria Contemporary Art Museum, the Festival de Arte Sonore, Hipersonica Festival, The National Museum of Singapore, the Optica Festival, Dance Theatre Workshop, Bates College Museum of Art and many others.

He has interviewed and written about Sound Art and sound artists such as Chris Mann, Annea Lockwood, Alvin Lucier and Stephen Vitiello, and has taught Music, Electronic Music, Electronic Art and Installation Art courses at Bennington College, Rockport College and the University of New Hampshire. He is currently an Associate Professor of Art at the University of Maine at Orono teaching in New Media and the Intermedia MFA program.

“...impressive, he understands and articulates the concepts behind the music...” - Joel Chadabe, interactive music pioneer 

“...sonically beautiful and technically accomplished...his work is at a high level, both intellectually and artistically...” - Scott Lehrer, recording engineer and Broadway sound designer