pics by Stijn Demeulenaere and
Walls was commissioned by for its project at La Castiglia di Saluzzo. La Castiglia is a 12th century castle that was converted into a prison in the late 19th century. It remained a prison up until 1992. The wall around the prison has a small walkway on it that allows you to walk all around the prison. The narrow walkway gives your footsteps a particular soft echo as you pass through it. An echo that reminded me of the sounds of the medieval city of Saluzzo, with its narrow streets flanked by high walls. Walls combines these sounds into an audio walk. Wearing open backed headphones, which allow you to hear both the live sound of the place and the recorded sounds played through the headphones, Walls takes you along the walkway, around the prison, reflecting on what it is you're actually listening to, and what the sound of a place could mean.
Walls uses compositions I made with sounds recorded in Saluzzo and juxtaposes them with the live sounds heard on the prison wall. The confrontation of these two listening spaces researches the question how cities sound, how we listen to cities and how them memories of the street noises we grew up in connects to our own identities. More than a simple acoustic ecology question, Walls wants to research if the shapes of the streets and squares can impress us with a sonic fingerprint, a sonic mind map. On top of this, the voice guiding you through your walk also intertwines a reflexion on the history of the castle with the sound compositions.
A special thanks goes out to Michela Sacchetto for all her hard work. Walls was also made possible by the gracious help of , Saartje Geerts, Aernoudt Jacobs, , Glenn Vervliet, Paolo, and the staff at La Castiglia. Thank you.