12小时：致秘密爱人的声音行动 Sound Actions For Your Secret Lover
In 2005, when I worked in Guangzhou, I began to listen to sound art works, and I also learned to practice field recording in the streets and alleys of Guangzhou. I began to advocate the political listening of urban sounds, concerned with how to wake up listening in cities that cannot be heard.
I wrote two column articles for “21st Century Business Herald”, about “inaudible cities”, sorting out the exploration of homogenized urban sound and sound ecology; about “political listening of urban sound”, discussing capital guidance of urban sounds, and the sound history of immigrant populations.
I wrote, “Listening does not consciously become an active and independent act, a tool for us to rebuild the relationship between the individual and the city. Listening is a game of symmetry, one side respects and understands the existing sound environment of the city, and the other side remains critical of listening. This is first of all the breaking of the aesthetic ideological hegemony in the auditory sense – upholding the sound localism, opening your ears, and reflecting on the power order looming in the hearing habits. This order not only points to the existence or demise of various sounds, but also to their various value systems, including aesthetics, are marked. Listening has to be a critical tool, because sound is the mark of justice in the city.”
So I started to create my first sound work. I call it the “12 hour” project. Based on my daily recording of the Guangzhou city field recording material, for four consecutive days, three hours a day, improvisation every day, one piece per day.
The process of improvisation is the interaction of body, emotion, listening, and memory to generate a private urban soundscape. It does not point to criticism, but to a sound action, to sharing to those who do not know where they are, the secret lover who is silent in the dark. This might be a sound gift that I want to give.