Ircam Talk: Fragments of extinction

Ircam Talk

Fragments of extinction

David Monacchi

Composer in artistic research residency at Ircam 2018


Fragments of Extinctionan interdisciplinary project, led by Italian eco-acoustic composer David Monacchi, is collecting, studying, and disseminating hi-definition 24-hour sound portraits of the world’s undisturbed primary equatorial forests, advocating for the importance of taking them as object of protection and patrimonialisation.

The seminar will introduce the author’s long-term project Fragments of Extinction, an environmental sound-art and science dissemination project, which is recording 24-hour sound portraits of the oldest and most biologically diverse primary equatorial forests in Borneo, Africa and Amazonia, and storing them as intangible heritage of ecosystems.

These data are: 1) analysed within an ecoacoustics framework; 2) composed into specific 3D sound-documentaries; 3) played back in museums and public spaces, ultimately aiming to foster audiences’ awareness on the richness and fragility of life, at the time of climate change which nowadays is worsening the already severe biodiversity crisis.

The circadian recordings are operated in the field with advanced space-preservative techniques including microphone arrays, first order ambisonics, and binaural at the same time. The last trip resulted in 1.45 TB of sound material, carried out into the place with the assessed possible highest biodiversity on Earth, the area of Yasunì in the Ecuadorian Amazon. During the residency (now starting), these data will be encoded, analysed, re-composed and decoded within an HOA signal flow, using Ircam’s software technologies, mainly in collaboration with the Acoustic and Cognitive Spaces team and the ZKM.


Eco-acoustic theatre


David Monacchi (Italy, 1970) is a researcher, soundscape recordist and eco-acoustic composer. He has been developing his multidisciplinary project Fragments of Extinction for nearly 15 years, conducting field research in the world’s last remaining areas of primary equatorial rainforest. The recipient of multiple international awards, Monacchi is pioneering a new compositional approach based on 3D soundscape recordings of undisturbed ecosystems to foster discourse on the biodiversity crisis through music and sound-art installations. A Fulbright fellow at UC-Berkeley, he has taught at the University of Macerata since 2000 and is now professor of Electroacoustics at the Conservatorio of Pesaro. He has worked for 25 years in interdisciplinary contexts mainly in Europe and North America and produced works for contemporary music, art installation, cinema, video-art, site specific public art. He holds an international patent and is founding member of several scientific and artistic networks.

David Monacchi (Italie) is an artist fellow of the Cité internationale des arts, in partenership with IRCAM and the ZKM Centre for Art and Media Karlsruhe.


Links and Events associated

Thursday April 12

Ircam- Salle Stravinsky 12:00 -12:55

Conference in English

Free Access

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