David Shulman- Electro-acoustic Mapping


Ateliers du Forum Paris 2022



My research is focused around listening to electromagnetic energy in everyday urban environments through sound walks whilst capturing these experiences through the use of multichannel sensing and recording devices or ‘assemblages’ and 360 video.


The virtual experience of these walks is then enhanced by using ambisonic panners to fully spatialise the multichannel audio that was captured whilst ‘tuning’ the various channels of ‘electromagnetic’ audio, assigning them to different pitches, allowing the audience to differentiate more easily between the different directions of sound in addition to the aesthetic quality that this brings. Wave oscillation patterns generated by the audio are also superimposed on the 360 video footage to generate a fully immersive audio-visual experience.


The research is also concerned with the juxtaposition of this electromagnetic energy experienced as sound with the acoustic sounds captured with conventional microphones, blending the heard with the ‘unheard’ in addition to the development of haptic experiences of these un-heard sounds through experimental multichannel headsets that use surface transducers.


To demonstrate my research I would like to play the ambisonic audio from different sound walks through a spatial array and divide or split the indexed Equirectangular 360 footage with wave oscillations across 3-4 computer monitors positioned in relation to the spatial array. I will also demonstrate how the virtual sound walks can be experienced as a composition or live improvisatory musical performance utilising the subtle adjustment of the levels of acoustic vs ‘electromagnetic’ sounds in the retelling of this immersive digital story/soundscape. An iteration of the Haptic headset will also be available for willing participants to try out and experience for themselves.

Marylebone Electrical Soundwalk: 


David Shulman is a Musician, researcher and improvisor. 


His current research utilises chance happenings, synchronicity and a form of ‘Ad-hoc’ DIY critical making exploring the unintended improvisatory usages of objects, tools and materials in order to create spatialised listening experiences of the ubiquitous unseen electromagnetic energy surrounding us in our everyday environments. 


Coming from a jazz improvisors background his recently developed practise has enabled the redeployment of his improvising skills in a radically different context. The unconventional use of current technologies and modes of digital storytelling such as 360 video and audio-visual coding software has facilitated the combining of his varied interests in spatial sound composition, visual representation and geometry to explore intuitions and speculations linking consciousness with matter and ‘magnetoreception’.


 The output of his research, which can also be seen as an exploration of agency from the perspective of a neurodiverse creative practitioner, has taken on multiple iterations including performance lectures, 360 video with ambisonic audio and ‘tuned’ multichannel sound installations, exploring the blurring of boundaries between research documentation and artistic/poetic expression. 

@David Shulman

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