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Transient zones of sound

Published September, 2014
by Easterndaze

Transient Zones is a festival that took place earlier this year in Prague. Over a few days, a group of artists moved and shifted from one location to another, creating temporary autonomous microzones of sound, reclaiming the public space for a brief moment from its functionalist nature – a space to shift from the 9-5 to shop or sleep, a sonic détournement.  

For instance, Susanne Kass’s voice piece on Námestí Republiky, one of the centres of commerce in Prague, has several layers of voices reciting the offers of stores located in the nearby shopping mall. Michal Cáb rubbing his polystyrene stick onto an advertisement stand is a bona fide perverse “desacration” of this commercial object which had hijacked the public space even before. 

There is something charming in the playful performances, battery noise in a passage way or a concert at the station with passing trains behind, creating not only the visual, but also the sonic backdrop, salvaging the urban space from its super seriousness. Embracing glitch and imperfections, a sort of ad hoc dilettantism, but in a good way. 

“Temporary shifts of the sound character of the place are created, sort of transient zones, through defamiliarization, animation, anesthesia, highlighting, appropriation, disruption, the use of public space as a musical instrument, etc..”

You can check the archive of the recordings and videos from the event here.