Plants like computers communicate outside and at the edges of the range of human hearing and therefore outside and at the edges of the range of human thought. Recent findings into sonic communication by plants, including screaming tomatoes, and speaking trees, remind us of what we might yet have to know about the world, and in particular how sound and listening might play a role in developing more harmonious relationships between ourselves and nature. Nowadays your phone can identify a plant for you and the names given tell a fascinating, complex and sometimes difficult history. This performance lecture explores relationships between sound, classification and computers, asking how we might work together with machines and the natural world towards more diversity and justice?
Matt Lewis is a musician and sound-artist based in the UK, he is co-founder of Call & Response, one of the UK’s only independent sound spaces. He has performed and exhibited nationally and internationally in countries including Austria, Brazil, Portugal, Serbia and the USA, in festivals and venues such as Whitechapel Gallery, Turner Contemporary, Café Oto, Tate Modern, MK Gallery and Centro Cultural Sao Paulo. In 2012-13 he was a Fellow at Central St Martins. He has a PhD in Music from Goldsmiths, and is a Tutor at the RCA where he leads the Sound Pathway and teaches on MA Digital Direction.