Urban Roar: A Psychophysical Approach to the Design of Affective Environments 9781501360572, 9781501360565, 9781501360602, 9781501360596

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Table of contents :
Half Title
Title Page
Copyright Page
Introductory remarks
Part 1 Synchronistic becomings
Part 2 Transformative mediums
Part 3 Translating ambiances
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Urban Roar


Urban Roar A Psychophysical Approach to the Design of Affective Environments Jordan Lacey

BLOOMSBURY ACADEMIC Bloomsbury Publishing Inc 1385 Broadway, New York, NY 10018, USA 50 Bedford Square, London, WC1B 3DP, UK 29 Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin 2, Ireland BLOOMSBURY, BLOOMSBURY ACADEMIC and the Diana logo are trademarks of Bloomsbury Publishing Plc First published in the United States of America 2022 Copyright © Jordan Lacey, 2022 For legal purposes the Acknowledgements on p. xii constitute an extension of this copyright page. Cover design by Louise Dugdale Cover image © stocklapse/iStock All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or any information storage or retrieval system, without prior permission in writing from the publishers. Bloomsbury Publishing Inc does not have any control over, or responsibility for, any third-party websites referred to or in this book. All internet addresses given in this book were correct at the time of going to press. The author and publisher regret any inconvenience caused if addresses have changed or sites have ceased to exist, but can accept no responsibility for any such changes. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Names: Lacey, Jordan, author. Title: Urban roar : a psychophysical approach to the design of affective environments / Jordan Lacey. Description: New York : Bloomsbury Academic, 2022. | Includes bibliographical references and index. | Summary: “Offers new insights, tools, and methodologies for the design of urban environments in relationship to noise and sound”– Provided by publisher. Identifiers: LCCN 2021042179 (print) | LCCN 2021042180 (ebook) | ISBN 9781501360572 (hardback) | ISBN 9781501360565 (paperback) | ISBN 9781501360589 (epub) | ISBN 9781501360596 (pdf) | ISBN 9781501360602 (ebook other) Subjects: LCSH: Soundscapes (Music)–Philosophy and aesthetics. | Sound installations (Art) | Music and architecture. | Affect (Psychology) | City sounds. | City planning. Classification: LCC ML3877 .L3205 2022 (print) | LCC ML3877 (ebook) | DDC 780/.071–dc23 LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2021042179 LC ebook record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2021042180 ISBN: HB: 978-1-5013-6057-2 PB: 978-1-5013-6056-5 ePDF: 978-1-5013-6059-6 eBook: 978-1-5013-6058-9 Typeset by Deanta Global Publishing Services, Chennai, India To find out more about our authors and books visit www​.bloomsbury​.com and sign up for our newsletters.

Dan, friend and explorer.


Contents List of illustrations Preface Acknowledgements Introductory remarks

viii ix xii 1

Part 1  Synchronistic becomings Part 2  Transformative mediums Part 3  Translating ambiances


Conclusion: On the oneness of experience


References Index


15 85


Illustrations Figures 1 1a 1b 1c 1d 2 3 4 5

A diagram of artistic flights Rhythms of the striated and the smooth The white wall of signification The left and right lines of flight The flow of autonomous affectivities Psychophysical parallelism and the human mode Locating ambiance, atmosphere and ambience within the perceptual field Locating fields of archetypes in relationship to the atmospheric field A summary of the artistic research process and categories of experience

24 29 34 48 55 63 90 102 122

Tables 1 2 3 4 5

Artworks with Medium Descriptions and Ambient Expressions Categories of Experience and Themes in Artworks The Distribution of Common Themes in Artworks Artworks with Categories of Experience and Urban Design Approaches Design Sketches for Artworks: Themes with Urban Design Insights

134 138 144 153 156

Preface The focus of this book is on sound, and the ways that this most malleable of materials can be transformed via the artworks of sonic researchers and practitioners. Its analysis is in the service of creating small, unassuming spaces in cities that generate an expanded sense of awareness, and demonstrate that we are more than who we think (or are told) we are. Its core concern is urban transformation through a listening to what I will call the urban roar. However, the arguments presented here are about more than just sound – they are relevant to all atmospheric mediums and the ways in which they shape our perceptions of the world. Furthermore, I am interested to explore psychophysical relationships between the ‘inner’ world of the psyche and the ‘outer’ world of atmospheric space in artistic research and urban design. To achieve this, I bring together an unlikely pairing of two radical thinkers of psychotherapy, Félix Guattari and Carl Jung. Following Guattari, this book investigates the mechanisms by which controlling signifiers structure our experience by preventing our idiosyncratic growth and entanglement, with the world. And, following Jung, I argue that our inner worlds present pathways by which we can bypass such dictatorial sign systems, even if only by virtue of the fact that the psyche presents itself uniquely to each of us. In fact, our inner worlds, our psyche and dreams, may be the only territories safe from the colonizing forces of capitalism (even if they might be haunted by it), because their irrational and improbable occurrences cannot be reduced to specific significations. I am not talking about dream analysis here (which is a roaring – and sometimes dubious – trade) but, rather, the actual experience of dreaming. For this reason, I am pleased to report that a dream had a significant impact on certain arguments presented in this book, particularly in relation to the concept and experience of synchronicity. Before I describe this dream, I will make the point that if an author were to discuss Gilles Deleuze without reading any Deleuze, it is likely that they would not be taken seriously. Equally so, if an author writes about Jung’s ideas without subjecting themselves to the very processes that Jung developed, which were grounded in dreaming practices, then their understanding of Jung is surely limited. My readings on Deleuze are certainly not as extensive as many of the philosophers and theorists I encountered while writing this book, though  I



consider my grasp to be sufficient enough for the presentation of the ideas herein. Similarly, in addition to reading parts of Jung’s oeuvre, I made myself the subject of a Jungian psychoanalysis so as to not only understand but also to experience the collective unconscious and archetypes of which Jung writes. While embarking on this psychoanalytic process I had what was a most extraordinary dream, which went to the heart of what this book is about: synchronicity. Although, outside of the Preface, I will rarely mention dreams or Jungian psychoanalysis, I include my dream here due to the profound impact it had on the development of a key concept – the ‘oneness of experience’: I am inside a home. The interior living space is an illuminated red. Jung is giving me a session. He projects from a giant television screen and is looking at me. I’m not sure if it is a therapy session or an educational session. I note his eyes. They are open and piercing, and yet his gaze is entirely internal – as if he were looking inwards. He strikes me as hugely intelligent, and although not scathing, he is somehow impatient. I find myself holding a children’s picture book he provides. I am looking at a double-page spread. In the top left corner, there is a paragraph about logic that appears to be writing itself and to the right is a giant humanoid creature floating adjacent to multiple luminous colours. I am reading the dense academic passage about logic and its meaning, which is situated just behind the giant’s head. The giant, however, is transfixed on the swirling colours before him. Then my attention moves to the bottom right of the book, where I find a series of numbers. They are all 1’s – lots of them, individually and in groups of two, three and four, rapidly spinning around like an old odometer. I determine no logic or pattern in their movement. Then the words are spoken: ‘and synchronicity is the answer, and that’s it!’ I’m now looking at the screen. There is Jung, looking old and professorial, and somewhat bemused. Then I hear him say, impatiently, ‘Well, that’s your hour up’, and he is gone. I’m taken aback by his curt and sudden departure. What was most remarkable for me about this dream is that it occurred at a time when I was struggling to identify the core theme of my arguments about artistic research. I realize now, retrospectively, that the answer was encapsulated in the illustrated picture I had been viewing, which a full reading of this book (the non-children’s version!) will make clear. In brief, logic governs the mind while the atmospheres of the world engage our body, and beneath it all (i.e. beneath the level of perception and/or awareness) are mysterious, irrational synchronicities that somehow drive the experiences of our psyches and of worldly becomings. I have no explanation as to how or why this dream occurred,



and I have no intention of trying to convince anybody about anything regarding the meaning of dreams. All I can say is that the dream did occur as a moment of profound synchronicity, and I include it here as it has greatly contributed to the shaping of the arguments presented in this book. Even if you are allergic to such esoteric allegory, I encourage you to read on. Much of this book (particularly Part 3) is concerned with artistic practice, and the search for ways that sound art research processes might meaningfully link with larger questions of how and why we develop our cities in the way we do. There can be no doubt that planning approaches are, on the whole, highly utilitarian, driven by the dominating financial needs of capitalism and restricted by those political and legal codifications that render our cities fit for habitation. The result of these excessive controls is that our bodies are suspended in devitalized environments, meaning the worlds we could perceive are restricted to a narrow range of possibilities. Of course, this criticism cannot hold true for all of the cities of the world, as they are too vastly different in historical, social, cultural and political organization to be encapsulated by any sentiment or theory. However, the criticism is aimed at the ever-evolving controlling apparatuses of capitalism, which is accelerating its envelopment of the planet in a web of destruction and exploitation (a period sometimes called the Anthropocene). Most impressively, capitalism is not something fixed; rather, it is a constantly mutating process able to find new territories to colonize and exploit. In its newest form, we are witnessing the rise of the algorithm that colonizes minds via screen technology, with mathematical modelling shaping our sense of self and, more insidiously, our self-worth. These problems are so massive and overwhelming that it is easy to become despondent. But the old adage of ‘think global, act local’ still holds power; for me, this manifests in my interest in finding pathways by which the mysterious phenomenon of creation could somehow transform small places in our city to actualize experiences that exceed the utilitarian needs of finance. Such city spaces would connect us with the more-than-human, by extending the bounding conditions of our sensory limitations. As I hope to show here, a renewed interest in and respect for the oneness of experience presents pathways for expanding the affective potential of our cities.

Acknowledgements I thank Jacquie Flecknoe-Brown for her insights, and Ana Cecilia (Cissa), Eva and Javan for their patience, support and shared reflections while I wrote this book. I wish to acknowledge the Australian Research Council for funding my research on the theory and practice of translating ambiances and investigating new methods for urban soundscape design, which is the focus of Part 3 of this book. Finally, my thanks to friends and colleagues at RMIT University for their ongoing encouragement, support and conversation.

Introductory remarks

This book argues for the existence of what I term ‘autonomous affectivities’, and the ways in which they might be encountered and translated between different environments. Its main purpose is to discover methods by which artists, particularly those sound artists involved in fieldwork practices, can work with the intensities of more-than-human forces to vitalize our cities. Autonomous affectivities roar beneath the din of the urban, seeking the attention of us humans, so captured by the environments of our own making. It is the mythic intention of this book, to discover ways in which we might hear this urban roar. Of particular interest is the phenomenon of synchronicity, and its relationship to artistic creation – as experience, flow and catalyst – in manifesting autonomous affectivities into diverse and affective environments. To develop this argument, the book has been broken into three parts: Part 1, Synchronistic becomings, adopts a Guattarian approach for mapping lines of flight through systems of signs that generate/reveal synchronistic pathways for artistic practice. Part 2, Transformative mediums, demonstrates that the affective atmospheres generated by body–environment relationships are mirrored by a field of forces and intensities accessed by the mind/psyche.1 Part 3, Translating ambiances,2 describes an experimental project that invited a collective sonic–artistic body to access and translate autonomous affectivities from the ‘wild’3 into a gallery environment. Mind and psyche are understood in this book to be two sides of the same coin. Throughout the text, the term ‘psyche’ is understood as the energetic activity of the mind when in direct relationship with the collective unconscious, and the term ‘mind’ refers to our rational capacity to establish agreed common notions. At any one time, either one of these two states can be considered to be dominant (typically, the psyche dominates during sleep and the mind while awake). This definition will be expanded upon in Part II of the book. 2 T h e spelling of ‘ambiance’ with an ‘a’ is intentional and drawn from texts by Jean-Paul Thibaud (2011; 2020); please refer to page 93–6 for a detailed discussion. 3 I will use the term ‘wild’ throughout this book, rather than ‘nature’. Wild, to me, is reflective of the intensive powers of the earth, particularly in places relatively unaffected by civilization’s built and cultivated environments. The wild, when felt, is expressed as a vital and expansive experience. It is true that wildness can be found anywhere, even where the densest manifestations of civilization exist: perhaps the wild appears in the unplanned growth of plants, or in someone’s unexpected 1


Urban Roar

The book’s ambitions are achieved with a mixture of theoretical and practical approaches. Part 1 of the book is theoretical, including a study of a range of scholars exploring connections between Deleuze, Guattari, Deleuze and Guattari, Spinoza, Deleuze’s reading of Spinoza and Jung, through whom I hope to show that an autonomous affectivity is equivalent to an archetype (via Jung) and an essence (via Deleuze’s reading of Spinoza). Part 2 of the book is also largely theoretical, but it does the important job of transitioning the reader from the philosophical discussion of Part 1 into a consideration of the situated body in everyday contexts. Part 3 of the book is mostly practical, focusing on an artistic research experiment completed in 2019 that was designed to reveal and index autonomous affectivities encountered during fieldwork practices, for the purpose of influencing urban design interventions.

Sound studies There are three key points to make about this book’s relationship to sound studies. First, it refers to the fact that this book is about more than just sound.4 Working in sound studies scholarship can be at once expansive and reductive. It is expansive as sound provides different ways to think about reality and experience. We see this in a range of scholarship including sonic materialism (Cox 2018), phenomenological approaches to the auditory imagination (Voegelin 2014) and writing practices related to sonic fiction (Eshun 1998; Schulze 2020a), to name only three. Simultaneously, as research enquiry, it can also be considered as reductive, as sound is only one of the entangled mediums through which each of us uniquely perceives and comes to know the world. Any time we are affected by sound, we are very likely also affected by light, smell, texture, rhythm, temperature – the list goes on. This book is therefore about all of the atmospheric mediums through which we come to know the world. This point will be most fully realized in Part 2, which places the sensing body in relation to the transformational powers of ambience, ambiance and atmosphere theory and practice, all of which give consideration to the multisensory (even if sound is often privileged, as will be discussed). emotional expressions. But I generally use this term to refer to those planetary lands where the desiring-body Earth expresses itself unimpeded by the exploitative demands of capitalism. 4 This theme was discussed at a recent symposium I organized called ‘more-than-sound: exploring contemporary themes in sound studies’ (2021). See: more-than-sound.net (accessed 22 September 2021).

Introductory Remarks


Second, sound never exists in and of itself. It is always connected with materiality via its emergence, propagation and reception. Academic and curator Caleb Kelly (2018: 1) discusses this in ‘Materials of Sound’, an issue he edited for the Journal of Sonic Studies: In the shift of our attention to the sound itself or the sound in itself, it may be that we have forgotten the material origins of that sound. While we listen closely to all manner of sounds in nature and culture, the things that created the sounds have receded to the background.

This conversation is closely connected to sonic materialism, a concept introduced by Christoph Cox (2011: 157), who writes: sound and the sonic arts are firmly rooted in the material world and the powers, forces, intensities, and becomings of which it is composed . . . we might begin to treat artistic productions not as complexes of signs or representations but complexes of forces materially inflected by other forces and force-complexes.

So, while Kelly connects sounds with the materials of the everyday world, Cox extends this vision of materiality to encompass its force or forcefulness. Sonic materialism, therefore, exists in the generation of sound and in the propagation of sound itself. It is interesting to compare this position with the performances of Francesco Lopez, who blindfolds his audiences so that their perception is focused on sound-in-itself. While experientially effective, the blindfolds can’t ignore the fact that there is a network of audio-technical equipment which enables sonic propagation and that the force of the apprehended sound is a type of materialism in itself. Any sonic experience always reaches back out to a network of material, cultural and historical complexities that gave rise to that sound, in that moment – the point being that the sounds perceived will always be more than their phenomenological perception, because the sounds that have been perceived are generated, propagated and modulated by objects and forces that are themselves material. Third, and of most interest to this study, is that the book attempts to connect sound studies with those more-than-human studies, such as posthumanism, vital materialism and Spinozisms in general, all of which sprout from affect theory, itself rooted (via Deleuze) in Spinoza’s famous study Ethics. Of course, a number of sound studies scholars have already done this, including Steve Goodman (2012), Christoph Cox (2011, 2018), Salomé Voegelin (2018), Marie Thompson (2017a) and Will Schrimshaw (2017) among others, as I have in


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my own earlier work (Lacey 2016a). Sound lends itself well to discussions of affect and virtuality (or sound as excess). For instance, Christoph Cox (2009) writes of sonic virtuality, via his study of Leibniz, that virtual sounds exist in an unconscious or inaudible domain. Somewhat similarly, Steve Goodman (2012) uses the term ‘sonic ecology of vibrational affects’ in reference to the vast continuum of sounds (in regard to frequency and dynamic range, and geographical spread) that our immediate bodies are not able to apprehend. There is obviously so much more to say about this, but I won’t do so here, as the whole of Part 1 of this book is dedicated to a discussion of more-than-human forces and how they might be accessed via artistic practice. These forces, I will argue, are autonomous affectivities that populate a plane of immanence that can be accessed only via their felt affects.

Autonomous affectivities The term ‘autonomous affectivities’ is familiar in the domains of biology (Maturana and Varela 1998) and social psychology (Ellis and Tucker 2015). Rather than going into a full discussion of these two complex studies, I will only make the comment that a body is considered autonomous insofar as its nervous system generates internal activity that causes changes to the body. These affectivities occur beneath the level of perception, demonstrating that our conscious decisions are only partly responsible for the actions of our bodies. Social psychologists take this a step further by considering the emotional activity that arises in relation to the autonomous affectivities of the body (see Ellis and Tucker: 164). As such, most of the body’s actions (and emotive responses) are either biologically generated or occur in relation to events in the immediate environment; in each case the body is said to have acted autonomously.5 My use of the term ‘autonomous affectivity’ is quite different. I am suggesting that affectivities are autonomous forces and intensities, equivalent to Jungian archetypes and Spinozian essences, existing across the collective unconscious/ plane of immanence. As such they are autonomous to the human mind (its capacity for rationality/common notions) and are accessible only via the psyche (a.k.a. the intuitive mind). Autonomous affectivities can be apprehended only as Maturana and Varela (1998) also argue that humans bring forth a world via our conscious capacity for language/languaging (see 234–5).


Introductory Remarks


felt affects, and we become aware of them only during moments of synchronicity. As such, the autonomous affectivities of the body can be considered to mirror the autonomous affectivities of the psyche, insofar as both are continually operating beneath the level of perception and can be experienced only as felt affects. This admittedly dense paragraph will be explained fully in Part 1; the main point here is to acknowledge the relation of autonomous affectivities to biology and social psychology; however, from here on I will proceed with my own definition. My desire to foreground the concept of autonomous affectivities has emerged from my own frustrations while reading leading Deleuzian philosophers, who invariably skirt around the issue of what virtuality actually is. It is often applied as a catch-all term for excess, without much discussion of what that excess might be (beyond, perhaps, discussions of chaos and noise). The closest I can find is Rosi Braidotti (2013) who introduces the concept of zoë, which expands the notion of life into the non-human and more-than-human by ‘express(ing) the simultaneously materialist and vitalist force of life itself ’ (103) and, most famously, Brian Massumi (2002), who presents affect as pre-personal intensities existing beneath the level of perception (autonomous of human emotion) that ‘follow different logics and pertain to different orders’ (27). And as described earlier, in sound studies, Steve Goodman (2012) and Christoph Cox (2018) provide us with interesting ways to consider sound as being in excess of human comprehension. In general, though, philosophical texts that discuss the virtual inevitably fall into complex (though tantalizing) abstractions, and in so doing produce more questions (or preponderances) than they do answers. Of course, the cause of this could simply be the inadequacy of written language in attending to the non-representational (Thrift 2004; Anderson 2006; Boyd and Duffy 2020) nature of affect, meaning that the only way to navigate this conundrum is via abstractions that intend to evoke rather than describe. Prior studies have attempted to generate understandings and data related to the realm of the prepersonal, including, for example, McCormack’s (2008) study of dance and geography to reveal ‘generative relations between moving bodies and spaces’, and de Freitas and Rousell’s (2021: 222) recent study of the role of electro-dermal skin activity (EDA) technologies in ‘mapping the play of affective intensities across the environment’. Such approaches to understanding and studying pre-personal affect are important and interesting, but their obvious empirical challenges make them subject to criticism. For instance, Wetherell (2013) argues that any description of pre-personal intensity will always be accompanied by


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discourse (text) which immediately negates the initial intention. She posits that affect and discourse are ‘emergent patterns of situated activity’ and that these patterns should be the focus of any research efforts dealing with affect (33). This makes sense, and certainly I will try to attend to this in my own way in the experimentations described in Part 3; however, this book remains committed to the idea that pre-personal affect exists, and I will ascribe to it a structure of autonomous affectivities, while being aware that this structure (such that it is) can be experienced only as felt affects.

Sonic desire Desire is of utmost importance to this book. It is critical to the understanding of all the major thinkers explored, and the artistic research processes developed in this book. It is both what is felt, and what precedes feeling, the forces that bind all bodies. As will be discussed in Part 1 of this book, the Deleuzian philosopher Ian Buchanan (2020) argues that new materialists have taken on the material assemblage theories of Deleuze and Guattari, but at the expense of desire which is the resonant force that ‘holds’ material assemblages together. He states that an issue with much Deleuzian philosophy (including affect theory) is that it wants to take the materialistic discussions of Deleuze, and Deleuze and Guattari, while leaving behind any proper discussion of desire, which he states is essential to their philosophies (he takes aim primarily at Jane Bennett (2010) and Manuel DeLanda (1997); in my opinion, both Braidotti and Massumi do attend to desire via zoë and autonomy of affect, as mentioned earlier). As Buchanan informs us, desire is equally important to the material in the formation of human and nonhuman assemblages; and according to Buchanan, any analysis that applies one without the other is not properly applying Deleuze and Guattari’s theories. I will discuss this in more detail in Part 1, but the main thing to say here is that in this book, discussions of desire (and desiring-flows) are inseparable from discussions of the material (and the machinic interconnections of the material) because desire is the very forcefulness by which materialities are able to maintain their interconnections. Likewise, sound is limited when understood only as material flux, as for instance, argued by Christoph Cox in Sonic Flux (who interestingly enough builds his ideas – partly at least – from Manuel DeLanda, one of the new materialists that Buchanan claims ignores the importance of desire). Cox’s

Introductory Remarks


materialism provides us with a new and fascinating way to consider the actual (sensed) and virtual (excess) flows of sound, but without a discussion of desire it lacks the necessary discussion of social and cultural diversity as expressed via sonic experiences. Cox’s work has been criticized as a universalizing approach to sound studies (as critiqued by Thompson 2017b) that doesn’t allow for the particularities of socially and culturally unique emergences (at least, not advertently). So, what is sonic desire? In Holger Schulze’s Bloomsbury Handbook of the Anthropology of Sound (2020b: 264), a ‘Pulse’ written by Marie Thompson states that ‘desire can often seem deeply personal, or even pre-personal, inasmuch as it may appear to escape rational thought and intentionality. Yet desire is also irreducibly social, bound up with disciplinary norms, expectations, and prohibitions.’ In this passage Thompson binds sonic desire to the personal as that felt and expressed, while also gesturing to the irrational (pre-personal). As such, sonic desire is felt – both personally (as expression, language, etc.) and prepersonally (affectively, beneath the level of perception). From this explanation, pre-personal sonic desire can be thought of as a transversal force, which is always immanent to our experience. The propagation of sound is both felt and expressed by bodies (human, non-human/corporeal, incorporeal) manifesting as a vast and impossibly complicated interplay of diverse desires and desirings that give shape to the world we know, now. This understanding of desire departs from devitalized discussions of the material, by providing an awareness of how, to use Holger Schulze’s (2020b: 15) words, we ‘experience, perform, digest, and expand sonic desires’; and it is this very malleability of sonic desire through which new worlds (Universes of Value) might (re)assemble. Finally, as per Buchanan’s critique, the idea of desire as both personal experience and pre-personal movement requires bodies to exist in a machinic configuration. I use machinic here in relation to Deleuze and Guattari’s use of the term. I remember being offended by the term when I first encountered it, mistakenly believing it was reductive insofar as it rendered the body as an unfeeling machine. But I now realize that the body can be considered only a machine if it is in relation to desire (remembering that desire is both personal and pre-personal). Each body-machine has its own internal processes, and ins and outs that connect it with other machines. For instance, the ear-machine receives vibrations, processes this mechanically and delivers the resulting electrical signal to the brain-machine, which in turn processes the signal into what we perceive as sound, which then evokes reactions via the nervous system. And the reactions connected to each set of internal processes will also impact the other bodies


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with which we are connected. What is often forgotten (and to which Buchanan brings our attention) is that machines connect to form rhizomatic assemblages – the assemblage of the human body, multiple human bodies, the immediate environment and so on – but they are able to interconnect only because of the transversal flows of desire that connect them; that is, the purpose of the interconnective network of ins and outs is to enable the flow of desire, which in turn holds material assemblages together. This is what Deleuze and Guattari call the ‘desiring-machine(s)’. There is no machine without desire. Desire is vital transversality, which gives us, and all bodies, expressive potential. And as we shall see, by amplifying, transforming and even redirecting flows of desire, the practising artist is able to reassemble those machinic assemblages that determine our experiences.

Integrated World Capitalism (IWC) Part 1 of this book spends considerable time arguing in favour of Guattari’s view that systems of signs control our experiences (Guattari [1989] 2008: 2016). These systems of signs have the effect of controlling flows of desire such that the assemblages they form are fixed into structures that determine the ways we experience the world. This is what Guattari (2016: 5) means when he speaks of the ‘dictatorship of the signifier’, a term that appears frequently throughout this book. Part 1 of this book is centred around a Guattarian diagram (of my design) to discover possible pathways for creative renewal through the semiotic complexes of contemporary urban life. These systems of signs are largely informed by what Guattari calls Integrated World Capitalism (IWC). I will spend a little time explaining this in the introduction as the term is employed without further definition throughout the text. In short, it is the semiotic structures of IWC that determine who we think we are, via the affective forcefulness of the environments and expectations which it creates. Recognizing and evading these semiotic structures is of absolute importance to the artistic processes mapped out in this book, and inform the first steps taken in Part 1. The simplest way to think about IWC is to consider that capitalism has evolved independently in multiple countries. The capitalisms we see emerging in China, Britain and America, as well as in other countries, are unique expressions of the cultural, social and historical circumstances from which each version of capitalism has emerged. Adam Curtis (2021) captures this process very well in

Introductory Remarks


his six-part documentary series Can’t Get You Out of My Head (though the series is not without its critics). In it, he provides a fascinating narrative which includes the parallel development of capitalism across several countries, leading to the present age in which networks of server rooms and surveillance technologies have so extended the reach of capitalism that it can now effortlessly colonize the human mind. Like Curtis, Guattari realized that various national capitalisms were integrating into a global force, a forcefulness producing increasingly homogenous environments. This homogenization is easily witnessed by those who travel internationally. The rise of the global city demonstrates the incredible power of IWC to generate and circulate systems of signs that reproduce the same, as expressed by the familiar patterns of architecture, advertising, fashion and language that seem to effortlessly replicate across the globe. It is a type of unfolding horror show that colonizes difference, all at once enforcing a consistent image of the human, the non-human and the environment into assemblages that act in the service of finance-generating institutions. Via Guattari’s understanding, it is not enough to revolt against capitalism, because any revolution will simply be repressed and/or absorbed by the state; and, at any rate, as he and Deleuze noted, most people seem to desire servitude and the preservation of the systems of signs to which we are subjected (an impression formed after the failed student- and worker-led revolutions in 1968 France; see Descombes (1979): especially 131–5, for further discussion). As such, rather than a dialectical discussion regarding the overcoming of capitalism (via Marx), we find in Guattari a study of the production of semiotics as the means by which environments, behaviours and thought are captured into fixed and repetitive patterns. Central to this is an understanding that signs are not just representative symbols and texts; they also have affects insofar as they determine and restrict our behaviours. These global networks of signs act to reduce the creativity of our planet, the wild places of which are replaced by homogenous expanses of agricultural and urban infrastructures, and the life supported by the planet (including us) to a limited series of expressions that have the sole function of perpetuating the machinations of IWC (the domesticated animal/worker, the CEO, the dispossessed, the extinct and so on). This book follows Guattari in developing a method to recognize and challenge these systems of signs, but mainly with the desire to design a tool for artistic research. It takes the position that anyone who challenges the normative through creative experimentation must first contend with the repressive dictatorship of the signifier and its extraordinary capacity to shape


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our lives and our actions. In this sense, challenging the effects of IWC begins with understanding contemporary (particularly urban-dwelling) humans as defined by those systems of signs in which they are captured, and that by challenging these systems of signs human relationships with the world might be transformed. Of course, artists already do this, so I am not for a minute suggesting that this book introduces anything new in regard to the actual doing of artistic practice. But I am saying that artists, due to the sensitivity of their practices, are more likely able to elude the affectivity of the signifier, thereby inviting creative renewal. Of course, there is no reason to say an artist would have such an approach to their practice or, indeed, that a non-artist could not have such an approach to their political lives. I implore the reader to grant me some leverage in this regard: when I speak of the artist, I speak of the sensibility of the person who wishes to subvert the IWC in their reimagining of what their (and our) life could be. As an academic exercise, I am particularly interested as to how these actions might impact the application of artistic research and any possible implications of these applications for urban transformation. This is what drives the book’s artistic research focus (which is most clearly articulated in Part 3). The main question is: Could we ever reach such a critical mass of generative action that the controls of IWC begin to dissipate? That is, how do we redirect flows of desire towards the becoming of new worlds, where human societies are no longer forced into subservience by the destructive-drives of IWC (which has no other ambition than its own endless propagation)? Indeed, the extraordinary power of IWC is the feelings of inevitability it evokes. In our present age, we find ourselves in the embrace of the Anthropocene (or the Capitalocene, as it is sometimes called) with seemingly no way out from the destructive compulsions with which we are entangled and engaged. I believe Guattari’s studies of systems of signs provide the first steps towards an emancipatory politics rooted in artistic research. This is an emancipatory politics that releases the mind’s bondage to the dictatorship of the signifier, from which creative surges could, and must, spring forth to transform the planet’s social bodies and environments. These creative surges are felt as a roar emanating from the land, typically concealed by the dense web of urban life. When released from oppression, this roar of life is felt as something tangible and evocative. The emancipatory politics argued for here desires to make audible this roar, thereby transmogrifying those urban atmospheres controlled by the exploitative demands of IWC. Most of Part 1 of this book will be spent exploring this possibility. Following this, Parts 2 and

Introductory Remarks


3 will return to the human body, mainly the body of the artistic researcher, and their capacity to reimagine worlds anew.

A note on practice-led research My previous book, Sonic Rupture: A Practice-led Approach to Urban Soundscape Design (2016), can be considered a forerunner to this book, which will develop the theory I discussed to a greater level of complexity. Sonic Rupture was born in practice-led/performative research methods, which I will be referring to throughout this book as artistic research (see Pelias 2008, Haseman 2006, Bochner and Ellis 2003 for further discussion). The theoretical content of Sonic Rupture was mainly influenced by Guattari’s ecosophy, or the three ecologies (as he called them) – mental, social and environmental (Guattari [1989] 2008). I started Sonic Rupture with a challenge to acoustic ecology theorists and practitioners: if we were going to successfully develop an approach to urban soundscape design, we needed to recalibrate acoustic ecology such that it acted to diversify environments rather than arguing for hi-fi listening environments. The point being that noises should not be considered a problem in and of themselves (indeed, their contemporary Max Neuhaus had argued that noises can present interesting listening experiences (Lacey 2020a)) but, rather, that it is the predominance of a few homogenizing sounds (mainly transport infrastructures and air-conditioning systems) that are responsible for the banal, redundant and unhealthy listening environments to which we have become accustomed. The objective, therefore, should be to diversify these environments rather than simply making our cities quiet. This is a position that I maintain.6 Sonic Rupture ended with a model that proposed a way to diversify urban soundscapes by embedding sound installations that use creative practice techniques to challenge the homogenizing forces of everyday sounds. Put simply, if an urban dweller, every day, must wade through the exact same sound environments – and these sounds emerge as a consequence of the dominating presence of IWC and its It is fascinating to see the development of interdisciplinary approaches to urban sound design that are applying increasingly sophisticated approaches and methods to the design of urban sounds from multiple disciplinary perspectives. For instance, the Urban Sound Symposium provides an excellent example of the evolution of soundscape approaches and the ways in which interdisciplinary conversations might be facilitated. See https​:/​/ur​​ban​-s​​ound-​​sympo​​sium.​​org​/p​​​rogra​​m/ (accessed 26 April 2021). Similar efforts have been pursued in the INTER-NOISE conferences that are also exploring the soundscape approach; see Lacey (2019) for my paper arguing for a merging of scientific and artistic approaches in urban soundscape design.



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semiotic structures – then the affective intensities of those sound environments can be said to have a dominating effect on the body and mind of the urban dweller. It was proposed that installation practices could cut across these controlling environments with a-signifying ruptures that produce openings, wherein the emergence of new experiences might be possible. In the conclusion, entitled Dreamings, I argued that urban planners should support the creation of networks of sonic ruptures wherein artistic practices could provide innovative, playful and connected spaces. Since writing this, many of my papers and projects have involved me demonstrating the possibility of transforming urban space via practice to groups from government and industry. At times this is difficult, given the utilitarian focus of our city planners who demand that pre-established criteria should inform the creative act. Indeed, I very much believe that the creative act should come first, and that the criteria should follow, for the simple reason that nothing creative can possibly follow criteria (only predictability, which, while comforting to authorities is the exact reason for the homogenized soundscapes with which we are confronted). I have had some success in leading projects with practice-led methods, but what I have noted is that the biggest problem is in maintaining the enthusiasm that project partners feel when encountering the works (particularly temporary, or demonstrative works). The problem, as I see it, is that we live in a world that is dismissive of feeling. We are so invested in the righteousness of rational exposition that we belittle and dismiss feeling. However, what has been so clear to me is the flush of enthusiasm and wonder – dare I say enchantment – expressed via the gestures, words and even gazes of the project partners when immersed in an installation. I do not doubt for a moment the affective power of the practice-led approach (though to be clear, practice-led approaches do have their own artistic research methods, which I described in detail in Chapter 3 of Sonic Rupture). The challenge, which this book takes up, is: How can we meaningfully integrate artistic research into urban design policies? As such, this book is for all creative thinkers – whether they be artists, designers, planners or otherwise – who are interested to explore urban-based transformative action. In Part 3, one possible approach for integrating artistic experimentation into urban design processes is explored in detail. This book takes a very specific path towards this end, starting with a more-than-human exploration, moving to a perceptual-based discussion and ending with an example of practice. I still consider my project to be an acoustic ecology project, because like the initial World Soundscape Project (WSP) researchers, I too care

Introductory Remarks


about urban sounds and think that urban sound design is a very important part of the conversation about how our cities should feel. However, I maintain my ambivalence about the rather narrow approach to urban design the original research presented, while also feeling excited about the emerging international voices and practices that are attending to the question of how our cities should sound and feel (many of whom are discussed in Part 2). In my opinion, it is vitally important that artists are central to the conversation about how our cities should sound, and that engineers and planners do not rush too hastily to assess and deliver a standardized approach to soundscape design. We need to look only at the most enduring and excellent example of urban sound design, Max Neuhaus’s Times Square (1977–),7 to realize how practice-led, non-conventional and noisy interventions, when applied by a thoughtful and skilled artistic practitioner, are able to evoke perceptions in the most unpredictable and unique ways.

A final word This book is written as three parts rather than three chapters. This is because each of the parts is an entire work-in-itself that is attempting to make a specific point. As such, the reader will find that each part has its own introduction and final remarks that are specific to the arguments made in that part. The three parts are also intended to work together to achieve the overall aim of connecting the metaphysical narratives of more-than-human forces with the minutiae of everyday action. As such, the end of the book has an overall Conclusion that, like this Introduction, will attempt to fold the three parts together in a meaningful articulation of the book’s overall agenda. I fully accept that covering such a range of material and ideas might come across as somewhat bombastic; however, it seems to me that there is no point in discussing more-than-human forces if we don’t consider their application in an everyday context. Surely, that should be the point of any project concerned with the multiplicity and vitality of immanence? But further to this, I continually find that my experience of sound has the tantalizing effect of always seeming to be more than what is experienced – it is both immediate and intimates something in excess. It’s true that sounds can seem banal in an everyday context, but when I really tune into their utterances and strangeness, I never find them to be banal. Instead, I feel at such times that Times Square was originally commissioned in 1977. It was removed in 1992 and reinstalled in 2002.



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I am lifting a curtain as I become more conscious of my surroundings. Sound promises more than what it is, and sound artists, I think, are particularly attuned to this given that they spend at least part of their time listening to the sonic expressions of their environments. And then, there is the sound of my dreams. These intimate to me, more-than-human organizational structures that emerge from places of complete mystery. What I would do to have the skill to transcribe these sonic dreams into the real – how quickly their otherworldliness escapes me. Sonic dreams are proof enough that sound is more than materialism, or sensory phenomenon; they present sound as something else entirely. Are there sonic archetypes, I wonder? If I had such skills, rather than writing this book, I would be attempting to answer this question by recreating those heard sonic dreams into a compendium of shared listening. Until such time, I shall settle for exploring these intentions by way of the written word.

Part 1

Synchronistic becomings

Philosopher Gilles Deleuze refers to immanence as a ‘plane of immanence’, a concept that he derives from Spinoza’s ‘substance’. The plane of immanence is composed of forces and intensities that can be understood as more-than-human forces that exist beyond human sensibility, and can be experienced only as felt affects. We can consider our body to be located anywhere within this plane, with immanence stretching infinitely in every direction as a common substance that transverses all bodies. I take the position that the plane of immanence is composed of autonomous affectivities, which, I will argue, with support of contemporary scholarship, are synonymous with both Jung’s archetypes and Spinoza’s essences. Autonomous affectivities can be conceptualized as moving freely across the plane of immanence, passing through the bodies that they encounter. As they pass through our human bodies their affects are creatively expressed (through dreams, awareness and/or phenomena), which can be intuitively apprehended as synchronistic becomings. I will argue that this is consistent with Jung’s position that archetypes can be known to us only as felt affects, and Spinoza’s (via Deleuze’s) idea that intuitive knowledge (or the third type of knowledge) is necessary for the mind’s apprehension of essences. Part 1 ends by arguing that conscious awareness of these autonomous affectivities is synonymous with experiences of synchronicity (via Jung), whereby body and mind resonate to creatively express the new. Archetypes and essences (qua autonomous affectivities) are non-representational and therefore difficult (if not impossible) to define. This is considered a strength in relation to this book, the aim of which is to reveal a pluralistic methodology for artistic research and creation. In Part 1 of this book, I aim to justify these ambitious claims with recent scholarship that connects the works of Spinoza, Deleuze, Guattari and Jung.


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Dreamings I have often wondered about possible links between the plane of immanence and the collective unconscious. But, given my status as artistic researcher and non-professional philosopher, I felt this type of investigation lay outside my research domain. However, while completing a course of Deleuze’s oeuvre with philosopher Jon Roffe, I admitted to him my secret interests. Rather than scorning me for my irrationality, he, instead, introduced me to the extraordinary scholarship of Christian Kerslake (2007), particularly his book Deleuze and the Unconscious, which explores the esoteric influences on Deleuze’s work. Thus began an exploration by which I discovered an undercurrent of scholarly interest exploring connections between Jung and Deleuze (and his work on Spinoza), including studies that consider the philosophy of Deleuze within spiritual frameworks (MacLure 2021; Ramey 2012). I add my voice, as an artistic outlier, to these fascinating studies, and with it hope to entwine this rich scholarship with sound studies, so as to provide a fresh perspective on the drivers of artistic action and the vital importance of intuitive processes in artistic experimentation and discovery. As has been articulated, the qualities of sound, which are transversal, vibratory and affective, lend themselves well to discussions of affect (Cox 2018; Goodman 2012) and, more broadly, to the ideas of more-thanhuman forces (Voegelin 2018; Schrimshaw 2017). Although the full range of possible sensory experiences will be considered in this book, sound remains the privileged medium, the reasons for which will become clearer in Parts 2 and 3. I come to these ideas as someone who has long held a personal interest in Jung’s concepts of the collective unconscious and the archetypes (Jung [1954] 1968; [1961] 1989).1 I have always been a vivid dreamer, the adventures of which I continue to find inspiring, terrifying, baffling and enchanting (sometimes all at once), and, like many artists and creative thinkers, I find dreams to be a powerful source of personal transformation and creative possibility. The recent book Ludic Dreaming, which applies a variety of dream-like methods to speculate on the meaning of knowledge, is the only study I know of that has introduced dreams into sound studies. The authors write that ‘dreaming can . . . be understood as a method – the method – for thinking the multiplicity of the singular. If dreaming Across Jung’s impressive oeuvre many definitions of the collective unconscious and archetypes can be found. I take most of my understandings (though not exclusively) from these two referenced texts. The chapter on the ‘Confrontation with the Unconscious’ in Memories, Dreams, Reflections ([1961] 1989) is particularly fascinating. However, as I indicate in the Preface, the meaning of both terms is best understood through experience (qua psychotherapeutic practice) rather than simply read via printed text.


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is anything at all, it’s that it always amounts to more than one thing’ (Cecchetto et al. 2017: 1). Across eight chapters the authors explore connections between sound, affect and dreams, expanding their method into a myriad of speculations. The reader is taken outside a world of certainties into unfolding explorations of the (un)known; just as dreams and sounds unfold unexpectedly, the book’s explorations creatively (and expertly) steer its readers across shifting terrains of dream-inspired studies. It is an important book insofar as it shows how the amorphous and mysterious phenomenon of sounds (and dreams) can inform newly idiosyncratic methodologies. My intention here is not to present my research as a dream-inspired methodology, but, rather, to use theory and practice to explore relationships between archetypal affect and artistic practice. Rather than being driven by dreams, this book looks to the possibilities of the collective unconscious (considered here to be synonymous with Spinoza’s ‘substance’ and Deleuze and Guattari’s ‘plane of immanence’ – more on that later), particularly the creative possibilities that dwell therein. In particular, I want to mount an argument for Jung’s acausal principle of synchronicity as a method for the artist to subvert the controlling systems of signs that govern everyday life, by manifesting a-signifying events and experiences that rupture our normative associations. I consider this to be a political act that expands the possible experiences of the social body, and the individual artist. As Part 1 of this book unfolds, the reader should keep in mind that the driving force of this book is urban transformation via the intuitive processes of artistic experimentation. Guattari argued that we should pay attention to all three ecosophical registers – environmental, social and mental – in our struggle to diversify life. It is crucial, he tells us, that we should expand the expressive capacities of each ecosophical register in our struggle against the reductive/destructive forces of capitalist exploitation. Indeed, to begin to understand how we might intuitively apprehend autonomous affectivities in an everyday urban context (the topic of Part 3 of this book), we must first bring attention to those systems of signs that subsume our conscious life, thereby obscuring any lines of flight that might propel us into other possible worlds. And to understand this, we need to study Guattari.

Guattarian beginnings Although I have opened this chapter with a discussion of autonomous affectivities, the bulk of this chapter is focused on a diagram that I developed


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from a detailed reading of Guattari’s Lines of Flight: For Another World of Possibilities, his concept of ecosophy in The Three Ecologies and, to a lesser extent, Chaosmosis (I do not tackle Schizoanalytic Cartographies in this text). I owe a special debt to Guattari for his concept of the a-signifying rupture, which was the catalyst for my previous book that applied new ways of thinking about acoustic ecology practices in an urban context. As discussed in its Introduction, I proposed a sonic rupture model as an additional tool for acoustic ecologists, and soundscape designers in general, wanting to transform the noisy environments of city spaces. The book attempted to absorb Guattari’s ecosophical project – that mental and social ecologies are just as important as environmental ecologies – into acoustic ecology practices, via a broad application of affect theory. I expand these ideas in this book, by suggesting that the soundscape artist must have an understanding – even if only a rudimentary one – of Guattari’s insights into the dictatorship of the signifier and its capacity to determine relationships between humans and cities, thus grasping the deeper possibilities of Guattari’s activism. Using his thought, my diagram attempts to locate possibilities for artistic actions that aim towards ecosophical urban transformations. It is my intention to use the ‘lines of flight’ concept as I used the idea of the a-signifying rupture: to discover methods by which the artist might challenge the dictatorship of the signifier as encountered in the contemporary city, with the intention of opening new experiential worlds for humans. (This is not to devalue the non-human, but to be clear that the interventions proposed here are designed to cut across human consciousness.)

Two transversal therapeutic tools In this section, I want to briefly describe a similarity between Guattari’s and Jung’s distinct psychotherapeutic practices, to explain why Jung’s archetypes appear in Figure 1 as an essential feature of my Guattarian diagram.2 The process of diagramming has a specific purpose for Guattari, which is directly connected to his broader schizoanalysis project. I am indebted to two Guattarian theorists for my understanding, to whom the reader should turn for a comprehensive understanding of the relationship between diagramming and schizoanalysis: I acknowledge that it might be jarring to some, that I even mention these two vastly different thinkers/practitioners in the same sentence. In what follows, I hope to demonstrate that what connects them, and the reason why their processual thinking appears together in Figure 1, is the concept of transversality.


Synchronistic Becomings


Janell Watson (2011) and Gary Genosko (1996). In Guattari’s Diagrammatic Thought, Watson (11–13) provides a welcomingly clear description of diagramming, writing that Guattari’s ‘diagram produces and creates, bringing new entities into existence and thereby serving an ontological function. . . . In other words, diagrams do not represent thought; rather, they generate thought.’ Accordingly, the diagram I have produced (Figure 1) does not try to represent the concepts or ideas explored in Guattari’s book. Rather, it attempts to map key concepts into a diagram to generate new thought and action. Guattari’s diagrams have a strongly pragmatic dimension, in that they present openings for the possibility of action rather than merely representing systems and formulations that pre-determine action. As he writes, ‘pragmatic (symbolic and diagrammatic) transformations . . . each in their own way, overthrows the dominant system of redundancies [to] reorder . . . the vision of the world’ (2016, 162). These dominant systems of redundancies can be found in language, systems, institutions and so on, anything that, in its repeated infiltration into our lives, causes flows of desire to be captured into fixed (and thereby controlling) assemblages. The pragmatics of a schizoanalysis enables the rerouting of desire, via open and experimental practices, such that these fixed assemblages might be transformed. Hence a Guattarian diagram does not respond to but, rather, actively transforms power relations, particularly, as we will see, by subverting those semiotic structures that control perception. In keeping with Guattari’s project, my diagram too is intended to be pragmatic, to help generate new artistic thinking and creation in the context of the urban environment. At the bottom of Figure 1 are two possible pathways for the activation of autonomous affectivities (also called archetypes and essences) – one that is directed towards the rhizomatic and another that is directed towards the ‘inner’ world of personal experience. It may appear odd that I add archetypes to a Guattarian diagram. I have certainly not come across any mention of archetypes by him (although there are some in Deleuze, as discussed later). However, this is perhaps less surprising when we consider that both the archetype and the diagram depend on the concept of the transversal, and this is the crucial link I wish to explore. In Guattari, the idea of the transversal is to be found in schizoanalysis, while in Jung it is integral to his archetypes and to his concept of the collective unconscious. Guattari’s practice was informed by Jacques Lacan, who advanced Sigmund Freud’s understanding of the personal unconscious through a synthesis of linguistics and anthropology with unconscious processes. Guattari challenged Lacan’s methods by proposing a schizoanalysis, which, in its simplest formation,


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understands desire to be transversal rather than contained to isolated, individual bodies. The term ‘transversal’ has mathematical roots: it is a line that simultaneously crosses multiple points. As applied by Guattari, it describes desire occurring simultaneously across all bodies – not only humans, but all living and non-living bodies. As such, any form of ‘therapy’ is understood as relational and social, in that it deals with flows (and the rerouting) of desire across and between bodies. Gary Genosko (1996: 18) writes: ‘Schizoanalysis will avoid the pitfalls of personological and developmental psychologies . . . by establishing, on a case to case basis, “a map of the unconscious”. . . [T]his cartographer will not, like a psychoanalyst, close and reduce, but rather, open and produce. Such mapping opens onto experimentation.’ So, rather than desire being interpreted as a function of the patient’s own history of trauma, the patient is, instead, encouraged to explore their desire through experimental practices that connect them with other bodies. In keeping with this, the diagram I provide intends to offer a vital connection with other bodies (such as the reader) by encouraging, at the very least, a consideration of how the flows of desire with which we are connected are determined, or captured, by social and political systems. The diagram is not intended to provide answers or to represent a solution, but is, rather, offered as a tool to evoke creative and intellectual experimentation, discovery and flight. In the case of Jung, his proposition that a collective unconscious exists beneath the personal unconscious (Jung [1954] 1968: 3) upset Freud, who located desire in the personal unconscious of each individual, which in his view was the proper focus of analysis. By encouraging us to encounter archetypes and the collective unconscious, Jung, instead, invites us to experiment with our own psyche as part of a process of self-transformation. In so doing, he created an approach to psychotherapy in which the patient drove their own process of transformation by submerging themselves in the deeper layers and mysteries of the collective unconscious, a process that can be described as bringing the personal and collective unconscious to consciousness (qua individuation). It is interesting to note that it was the application of transversality, in the unconscious (Jung) and in desire (Guattari), that contributed to the break that both clinicians/thinkers had with their mentors/colleagues. By attending to the transversal, both challenged the all-powerful position of the therapist who uses transference (a process wherein the analysand (patient) transfers their power to the therapist) as a means to guide the individual patient through their traumas. Rather, the

Synchronistic Becomings


patient controls their own transformation in a shared (or collaborative) journey with the therapist. It is likely true that encounters with the collective unconscious, and the practice of schizoanalysis, are best supported and/or guided by therapists and clinicians; however, in both cases, power is retained by the patient. Thus, rather than power being transferred to the analyst who then directs the analytic process, the experimental/creative practice of the patient (both in and out of therapeutic sessions) becomes the driver of transformation. To return to the issue of what connects Guattari and Jung: in the simplest sense, we might understand Guattari’s schizoanalysis as encouraging the patient to become aware of their interrelationship with transversal flows of desire, and Jung’s collective unconscious as enabling the patient to encounter and resolve challenges presented by the archetypes that reside in the transversal collective unconscious. With Guattari’s interests rooted in semiotic systems and the body as a nodal point for flows of desire, and Jung’s interests based in dream analysis and the symbology of the collective unconscious in relationship to the psyche, there is probably little else that connects these clinicians/thinkers. However, the claim that they both transversalized desire is a safe one, the effect of which was to empower the patient to discover their own pathways of development. But this is not a book of therapy! Rather, this simplified discussion is to point out that both Guattari and Jung were driven by their own radical psychotherapy practices. They freed desire so that it could become a force of exploration and transformation, rather than one trapped in the traumatized body of the individual who requires the expertise of a therapist (which is not to say this work isn’t also important, only that it does not explain the whole of desire). In keeping with this, the diagram provided (Figure 1) invites the artist to engage with its flows, and to discover trajectories and/or pathways that weave through systems of signs to become/ discover/create the new. As we will see, this includes possible encounters with autonomous affectivities.

A word on lines of flight What a line of flight actually is, is never clearly defined by Guattari. But this is true of many of his concepts, including the collaborative concepts he produces with Deleuze, several of which are also diagrammed in combination with the lines of flight. These include the plane of immanence, striated/smooth space, rhizome/


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arborescence, black holes and the white wall of signification. These concepts also appear in Guattari’s collaboration with Deleuze in earlier publications, of which A Thousand Plateaus is the most relevant to this book. Ian Buchanan’s (2020) book Assemblage Theory and Method provides an insightful analysis of many of the concepts introduced in A Thousand Plateaus, and I encourage the reader to explore his secondary material as a clear explication of these concepts (I will refer to his book throughout). However, it seems to me that Deleuze and Guattari’s vague definitions are purposeful, as they more readily translate the multiplicities of their thinking. For instance, a pre-determined line of flight would simply come to be a representation (of a process) and therefore act as another signifier too easily reterritorialized into the processes of capitalist production. As soon as a concept is locked into a representative definition it loses its vitality; that each of these concepts is difficult to understand, and seems to hover in a state of becoming, is its strength, and the reason it presents so well to artistic research. The two lines of flight I locate in the diagram will attempt to trace a path through systems of signs, guiding the reader towards new possible social and mental ecologies. Avoiding the influence of signifiers is not easy, and perhaps, not even desirable. The ordering processes signifiers impose on our daily lives determines our normative sense. Challenging normality is difficult and even dangerous. Guattari offers no easy answers, though his conceptual mappings point the way. He warns us that the paths presented by lines of flight are riddled with danger, not least paranoia, madness and isolation (black holes, as he calls them); but we might also ask what option does the knowledge-seeker have, particularly if they are looking for ways to disentangle from those mental and social processes that control (or attempt to control) everyday experience? Both lines of flight express my own struggle, consistent with many other people (as I have learnt though my conversations and readings), in trying to find a way out of the seeming inevitability of the exploitative controls of IWC. The left line of flight searches for meaningful integration with the entanglements of the rhizome – particularly in relation to the expressiveness of ‘archaic’ societies. The right line of flight connects with the intuitive knowledge of synchronicity as a way to connect artistic processes with autonomous affectivities. It is this second line of flight that will take us back to the sensuous real, from which the second and third parts of this book will unfold. As I will argue, it is the sensible – the domain of ambiance and atmosphere – through which the artist might transform the urban environment.

Synchronistic Becomings


A diagram of artistic flights Before proceeding, the reader is encouraged to study the diagram. It is not intended to be prescriptive; rather, it is designed to reveal how flows of desire are captured by systems of signs, and possible lines of flight, for escaping this entrapment. The diagram will be broken into several sections for discussion in the text, enabling a deeper consideration of its intentions.

Introduction to the diagram My relationship with Guattari is a mixture of awe and intrigue. Awe, because of the brilliant way he is able to discuss the dictatorship of the signifier without his text condensing into another system of signs; and intrigue, because of his often-bewildering lexicon. Existing scholarship does the hard work of making sense of Guattari, some of which I will refer to in explaining the diagram’s purposes. However, in my opinion, what is powerful about Guattari’s language is its allowances for the possibility of non-textual interpretation. The power of his words is not necessarily encoded in the text itself but in the possibilities that the text presents. Guattari (2016: 159) writes that ‘diagrammatism does not objectify a world, the representation of which it would stabilize, but assembles a new type of reality. It ruptures with the organisation of dominant significations.’ I read Guattari’s texts diagrammatically insofar as rather than presenting an objective reality; they have the effect of rupturing our common sense by revealing how our creative desires have been captured into a normalized image of the real (with systems of signs). I try to reveal this process in my diagram; desire is captured by the deter​ritor​ializ​ation​–rete​rrito​riali​zatio​n cycles of IWC and propelled elsewhere, as lines of flight, by this very momentum. Two lines of flight are mapped: one towards the vital becomings of the desiring-body Earth (henceforth called the left line of flight); and the other towards the synchronistic becomings of autonomous affectivities (henceforth called the right line of flight). The diagram can be considered a desiring-machine that is able to interconnect with other bodies (reader, world, books) and generate lines of flight that divert desires towards new thoughts, acts and creative becomings. As already mentioned, most of the key themes included in the diagram are from Guattari’s books Lines of Flight and the Three Ecologies and some other smaller publications, and to a lesser extent Chaosmosis (I accept this leaves out the important book Schizoanalytic Cartographies from the analysis),


Figure 1  A diagram of artistic flights.

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Synchronistic Becomings



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which discuss how systems of signs effectively control flows of desire, thereby fixing everyday assemblages into concrete and immaterial constellations (institutions, experiences. behaviours, etc.). Guattari’s books help us to recognize possible lines of escape from these ubiquitous controls of IWC, and in so doing resonate with those artistic practitioners searching for alternative ways to connect with the intensive real (which I will also refer to as the desiringbody Earth). Systems of signs are considered dictatorial insofar as they feel inevitable, despite their being so obviously destructive. A very simple example is to ask why the desire to shop is so powerful and compulsive, when we know that the processes required to create useless consumer products are connected with planetary-wide exploitation and destruction. Such is capitalism’s power to control flows of desire – despite us knowing there is something very wrong with our actions, we feel powerless to step outside the process. Of course, this also goes beyond the individual. The homogenizing forces of IWC drive all nation states – and planetary life – towards oblivion; and yet, as a society, we seem paralysed and unable to escape its terrifying implications. I therefore agree with Guattari’s ecosophical position that considering the plight of the environment is no more important than considering the controlling effects of capitalist exploitation on the social and individual body. For without a vitalized human population how can we expect the forces of capitalist production to be diverted elsewhere, when it is our somnambulistic acquiescence that provides it with its very sustenance? Note that I use the term ‘diverted’, rather than oppositional terms such as ‘overcome’ or ‘challenge’ or ‘destroy’. The reason for this is that Guattari carefully articulates that a diagrammatic assemblage reveals lines of flight by working with capitalism’s ‘semiotisation machine’, rather than trying to oppose it. He writes, ‘the creation of other types of semiotisation machines that reorient the economy of deterritorialized flows, undoing dominant redundancies and the stratifications of established powers, could begin to respond to [the] objective’ of undoing the ‘real power of capitalist regimes’ (2016: 96). Guattari’s point here is that we cannot follow the obvious pathways of nature-loving or return-to-Earth approaches that are created in opposition to capitalism (this was part of my critique of acoustic ecology in Sonic Rupture). In effect, Guattari tells us, we need to play capitalism at its own game. And to do that, we need to learn how capitalism so effectively controls the signifier so that we might divert desire elsewhere. The reason why direct opposition to capitalism is doomed to fail is that anything that can be represented is immediately made redundant, or non-vital. The face of Che

Synchronistic Becomings


Guevara, a marijuana leaf, the radical music of the 1960s, the internet – what tool of radical opposition has not simply been reterritorialized by capitalism into a newly exploitative commodity? This is capitalism’s enduring power: that even while it destroys the planet and all life on it, it uses its own processes of capture to continually reinvent itself. Mobilizing mass action might help, but any social collective must also be populated by a diversity of mental ecologies, the multiple flights of which are able to evade systemic capture and reveal new possible worlds.

For urban transformation It’s important to keep coming back to the central purpose of this book: urban transformation. This was also an important project for Guattari. He writes directly about his thoughts on the city in his paper entitled ‘Ecosophical Practices and the Restoration of the “Subjective City”’. I’ll have more to say about this later, but the following comment is instructive: It is not a matter of dreaming of a return to the walled medieval cities, but to move, on the contrary, in the direction of a supplementary deterritorialization, shifting the city toward new Universes of Value, to confer on it as a fundamental goal a production of a non-segregative and resingularized subjectivity, that is to say, ultimately, liberated from the hegemony of a capitalistic valorization solely based on profit. (Guattari 2015: 102)

Before commenting on this quote I will provide working definitions of ‘singularizations’ and ‘Universes of Value’. Guattari uses ‘singularization’ to refer to events in various processes of actualizing or becoming (Kaiser 2017: 155–60) as opposed to, for instance, the existence of fixed, singular objects with pre-established meaning. His ‘Universes of Value’ are possible emergent worlds of ‘richness and multivalence’ that ‘proliferate under our noses’ and present alternative worlds to that formed by capitalist domination (Guattari 1995: 29). Both terms are multiplicities and suggestive of creative possibility, insofar as they are not fixed representations but are events, becoming. Artists, given their diverse experimental practices, are well placed to participate in these transformations. In keeping with Guattari’s quote the diagram is, in part, an effort to transform our cities such that the mental and social controls of capitalist processes dissolve and thereby reveal other creative worlds – a simpler (if not reductive) account of Guattari’s sentence. The diagram I provide attempts to map pathways for transformation of the self, the social and the city. It considers the city as multiple creative singularities


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where unactualized events might burst forth. As such the city becomes a site of ecosophical activism, where transformations might occur: ‘Do it’ could be the order-word for a pragmatic micropolitics . . . Rather than agreeing to remain prisoner of the redundancy of signifying tracings, one will endeavour to fabricate a new map of competence, new a-signifying diagrammatic coordinates. . . . A micropolitical pragmatics will never accept systems of redundancy. (Guattari 2015: 171)

This is a call to action, diagrammed here as possible artistic methods that desire urban transformation. By becoming aware of capitalism’s capacity to trap our desires, we can consider how we might divert flows of desire towards creative becomings – both in our relationships to the environment and society, and in the way we understand the workings of our own bodies. In the diagram there are two lines of flight. The left line of flight finds new expression in the rhizome as social and environmental assemblages. The right line of flight leads the self towards the possibilities afforded by synchronicity, which will be explored in depth in the explanation of Figure 2. In each case, it is understood that the transformation of the urban can’t take place without the transformation of the self and of the social. We will now move into a deeper exploration of the diagram.

Rhythms of the striated and the smooth The concept of striated and smooth space forms one of the plateaus in A Thousand Plateaus, and is also discussed at length in another plateau called Nomadology.3 Note in the diagram that a rhythm is implied: the rhizome is deterritorialized into striations, and the reverse also occurs, with striations being reterritorialized into the rhizome. As such, there is no progression suggested; rather, there is a rhythmic relationship in which one can instantly become the other. What is particularly powerful about the striated and smooth concept is that it is a way for understanding the various permutations of social structures – nomadic, Indigenous, feudal, capitalist – without falling into that most appalling of scientisms: linear evolution. I say appalling, as linear evolution teaches us that human society is progressive, with less evolved humans living in nomadic societies, until they reach the status of, well, us – that is, modern technological I reference this concept in Chapter 1 of Sonic Rupture, as a mode of practice that recognizes machine noise as striated (the striated soundscape) and artistic intervention as the return of the striated to smooth space (a-signifying and subjective).


Figure 1a  Rhythms of the striated and the smooth.


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society.4 This concept has justified the worst cases of racism and fascism, including social Darwinism and eugenics, all of which place the white human able male at the supreme pinnacle of evolution, and everything else as dispensable (unless it can evolve quickly). Incidentally, I had a frightful experience with this model when I was a secondary school teacher in an Indigenous school in Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory (1998–9). I was charged with teaching science to a class of Yolŋu teenagers. In general the curriculum was fun and instructive, and we enjoyed it, until I was expected to teach the section on evolution, which was so presumptuous of its truth that it actually included the classic picture of an ape becoming a hunter-gatherer becoming a modern man. I rang the department of education and told them I refused to teach this part of the curriculum: I could not have mustered the required imperialism that such an act would have required. However, what struck me was just how deeply the arrogance of contemporary civilization runs, that its institutions so blatantly assume dominion over other cultures and societies. What I particularly like about the striated-smooth combination is that it gives us a non-imperialistic and non-temporal way of thinking about social organization and its possible transformation. In the diagram, smooth space is also rhizomatic space. It is a univocal (monist) territoriality in which desire flows freely through the entangled relations of people with land. It is suggestive of those cultures which held (and hold) a deep regard for the earth – the land – as bound to their cultural practices, rituals and totems, in which everyday consciousness and earthly vitality are inseparable. Feudalism, and then capitalism, is a planetary-scale deterritorialization from the entangled rhizomatic relationships between people and land towards hierarchical stratifications and techno-semiological structures (that is, the rapid, combined development of technology and signification; see Buchanan 2020) where the flow of desire becomes captured into highly controlled assemblages. Australia is a particularly fascinating example of this process as the continent did not experience feudalism; rather, traditional Indigenous practices continued right up until the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and sometimes the twentieth, before Britain invaded and I should note here that I don’t particularly like the way Guattari uses terms like ‘primitive’ and ‘archaic’ to describe nomadic societies or, more broadly speaking, Indigenous societies, though my impression could be related to the translation (I don’t read French, unfortunately). In fact, Jung is equally problematic, using similar language, which seems inconsistent with his in-depth and respectful exploration of myth. However, I put this down to the problems of nineteenth- and twentieth-century language. This is something now being rightly challenged via posthumanism – the work of Rosi Braidotti (2011, 2013) being an absolute standout in this regard – which calls into question the ways in which labels, categories and communications have been used to keep white men at the pinnacle of society. I don’t believe either Jung or Guattari are guilty of this disrespect, only that they employed a language that could be perceived as such.


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claimed the land for itself and decimated its populations. Although some rituals and totems live on through language and culture, much of the continent’s rhizomatic practices were violently destroyed by the stratifying powers of colonization, which continues to capture Indigenous cultures into exploitative systems of oppression (such as my aforementioned classroom story) while remaining ignorant of the univocality of Indigenous land expression (I am the land/the land is me).5 Guattari (and Deleuze) claim that preventing the rise of the State and eventually, capitalism, is inherent to Indigenous cultures. Guattari (2016) writes that Indigenous societies ‘simply refused the power takeover by an overcoding instance or a deterritorialization machine’ (166) and that ‘they endeavor to ensure all systems of deterritorialization . . . will be neither quantified nor systematized’ (167). Here, deterritorializations remain integrated with the intensities of desire, the body, the group, the territory. What is particularly powerful about this idea is that it easily displaces the linear evolution model. It is not that Indigenous societies did not have the potential to become the techno-semiological societies we now inhabit. Rather, they resisted possible deterritorializations towards hierarchical capture, with practices that bound them to the desiring-body Earth. This is not to say Indigenous cultures weren’t technological, far from it. Bruce Pascoe’s (2014) Dark Emu is a detailed portrayal of the technological, engineering and management practices of Australian Indigenous cultures that, rather than exploiting the land for profit, created a dynamic by which cultures flourished for millennia, which, we could safely say, is probably true of all Indigenous cultures (the inhabitants of smooth space).6 These cultures ensured the continuation of an ethics that bound humans and land in non-exploitative, collaborative relationships. The resistance to the emergence of State power, of which Guattari speaks, does not, in my mind, speak of a soothsaying ability to predict possible pathways to the future, but, rather, a wisdom in understanding the need to maintain the territorial power of land–body interconnection – a power which modern society desperately needs to rediscover. The movement of deterritorializations in the diagram maps the entangled ritualistic practices of Indigeneity into the stratifications of capitalism. Dance, painting, music and story were not necessarily demarcated practices in Indigenous societies, but were entangled via complex rituals connecting body with the earth. This Having said this, it is important to note that Indigenous wisdom lives on, re-emerging in new and varied forms. See, for instance, Tyson Yunkaporta’s (2019) Sand Talk: How Indigenous Thinking Can Save the World, and Bruce Pascoe’s (2014) Dark Emu. 6 Multiple examples of radical Indigenous design can be found in Julia Watson’s (2020), Lo-TEK Design by Radical Indigenism. 5


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more-than-human relationship meant individual and social bodies were embedded in the territorialities of the earth (what I also call the desiring-body Earth). Take the oft-cited practices of shamanism. Shamanic rituals involve voice, dance, bodily adornments, song – and sometimes hallucinogens to access typically inaccessible awareness. They manifest as stories, messages and other expressions which are then shared with the rest of the social body. However, upon deterritorialization, and subject to the productivities of capitalism, these entangled practices become stratified, such that dance, painting, music and story become singular practices, commodified as artworks, and coded into genres and genealogies. They can still connect audiences with flows of desire but, as we will see, these are small deterritorializations that are instantly reterritorialized into the strata, via, for instance, an expectation of audience response. On this matter Guattari (2016: 236) writes that everything we know about the oldest societies shows us that unlike capitalist societies, they did not separate out the different components of song, dance, speech, ritual, production, etc. In fact, these societies refused a division of labour and a specialization of isolated components that was too marked . . . thus the break in the West between speech, song, mimicry, dance, etc. . . . that can also be considered an impoverishment.

Societies integrated with the land – or what Guattari calls the intensive real – experienced intensities of being that interconnected them with vital powers as an everyday reality. However, the planetary-scale deterritorializations of recent centuries have transformed these ‘archaic’ societies into the techno-semiological assemblages of contemporary civilization, from which meaning is derived from a complex of technologies and significations (language/symbol/signs) forcibly separating them (and all of us) from the vast reservoirs of desire – the desiringbody Earth – with which we were once entangled. In an article in Holger Schulze’s book The Bloomsbury Handbook of the Anthropology of Sound (2020b), I recount a story I heard when I attended a funeral in Arnhem Land, a largely Indigenous-owned area in the Northern Territory of Australia. I won’t repeat the story here except to say, in a specific experience, I was stunned by the way the sounds of a didgeridoo, the painting of bodies, the songs, the dances and other actions (smoking circles, pacing and yelling) all combined to create another presence. It felt to me as if the whole ground of being had arisen and transformed everything into an embodiment of lived mythology. Guattari refers to this (and we will revisit this later) as an amplification, whereby the intensive real – passing from the desiring-body Earth into human bodies via ritual – resonates

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with such power that the world is entirely transformed. It was a rare moment for a Western person to experience – insofar as the possibility of earthly becomings are difficult to access within stratified societies that capture desire. It suggested to me that Indigenous societies were living in entirely different Universes of Value (to use Guattari’s term) that were empowered by their territorialized bonds with the earth. The process of deterritorialization by which our earth-bound bodies have been swept into the redundant system of significations marks the departure point at which capitalism begins its steady ascent. Guattari (2016: 97) writes: ‘Contemporary human beings have been fundamentally deterritorialized. Their original existential territories – bodies, domestic spaces, clans, cults – are no longer secured by a fixed ground; but henceforth they are indexed to a world of precarious representations and in perpetual motion.’ By presenting the benefits to human societies, when bound to the territorialities of the earth, Guattari presents another challenge to the idea of linear evolution. The desiring-flows of the intensive real can vitalize us in a way that the techno-semiological assemblages of contemporary capitalism cannot – because their systematization disconnects us from the desiring-body Earth. This will be explored more deeply in Figure 1b. What I want to bring attention to here is the importance of the smooth/striated concept to contemporary efforts to do away with the imperialism of linear evolution, and, instead, supplant it with an expressive earth in a constant state of becoming, which is able to shift between the striated and the smooth. In keeping with this, note that the diagram also includes a reterritorialization towards the rhizomatic. This is not a return-toearth ideology (though, if planetary collapse occurs, which it surely will, perhaps this will be the reterritorialization we cannot avoid) but, rather an artistic proposition, that the integration – what we might call interdisciplinarity – of modes of creation might be a method for re-entangling bodies with the earth: for reconnecting the body with more-than-human desire. Artists already do this – but how can we do it in the outdoor spaces of the city? How can we transform its rhythms and structures and significations such that a new ground of being might emerge, permeate and transmogrify the social body? This question will be returned to when discussing archetypes and synchronicity (see Figure 1d).

The white wall of signification For this section we will leave behind the rhizome for a moment, to focus specifically on the signification processes by which capitalism keeps our minds

Figure 1b  The white wall of signification.

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and bodies captured within systems of signs. The conversation will be broken into three parts: the bifurcation of univocality into the plane of expression and the plane of content; the cycle of deterritorialization and reterritorialization; and the ordering force of the white wall of signification (faciality).

The bifurcation of univocality into the plane of expression and the plane of content The deterritorializations of Indigeneity into the stratifications of capitalist society are simultaneously marked by a bifurcation into two planes – these are pictured in the diagram as the plane of expression and the plane of content (Guattari 2016: 167). It is important to note here that both of these planes always already exist within the univocal (rhizomatic) plane of Indigeneity: that is, it is not that signification does not exist within Indigeneity, but, rather, its significations are inextricable from desiring-expressions. That is, in Indigeneity, that which is signified through ritual, technology and culture cannot be separated from connections with the intensivereal (the land, or earth). That both the plane of expression and content are flattened in the rhizome explains, for instance, why certain objects might express ‘magic’ or why it is an unquestioned truth that spirits inhabit the land. It is the expression of the intensive real that makes ‘myth’ real – the vitality of the land is experienced in synchrony with that which is felt/thought/spoken; that is, experience and signification have not been separated into a hidden (qua ignored) land-based vitality and an objective system of signs. Once this univocality is bifurcated, meaning is sought in the significations generated by the plane of content, even though power in-itself remains in the plane of expression. The plane of expression becomes obscured by our focus on the plane of content, which itself is governed by the dictatorship of the signifier (in Figure 1b, imagine your feet standing on the plane of expression, providing your stability; but all of your attention is focused on the plane of content, above you). It is impossible for magical practices to be realized on the plane of content, due to its being disconnected from the intensive real. It is more concerned with processes of reasoning, categorizing and representing (the domain of magicians and illusionists). So-called magic can be experienced properly only within the univocal, where the transformative powers of desire are fully connected with the real (where desire is heightened, for example, via ritual). Later, I will try to show how autonomous affectivities (archetypes/essences) might be a way to reintegrate magical practices into the everyday: something, I suspect, that many artists do already.


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Upon bifurcation, multiple cycles of deter​ritor​ializ​ation​s–ret​errit​orial​izati​ons (explored in the next part) are activated. These are seen cycling in the diagram between the plane of expression and the plane of content (via the stratifications, which we will turn to shortly). Understanding this process is critical to understanding capitalism’s power, and also the possibility of our escape. When we focus our desire on the signifier (especially the commodity), we are no longer connected to the desiring-body Earth; however, it is the power of the plane of expression that continues to drive our desire, although we mistakenly consider this power to be located in the plane of content. Guattari (2016: 127) writes: ‘a plane of content . . . is transcendental in relation to the “natural” territorialities of desire and in relation to the plane of immanence. . . . [T]he plane of content always corresponds to the setting out of the object of power. Content crystallizes a world.’ In this case, Guattari uses the term ‘transcendental’ to refer to those signifiers that come to represent the meaning of objects (or actions or terms) which have transcended the actual powers that vitalize the real (singularities/ events/desire) via the plane of expression. We can still feel expressive power but we cannot connect with it, or ground ourselves in it as the intensive real. Rather, we get fleeting glimpses via deterritorializations, which are akin to managed flights of desire (the joy of shopping, for instance) that barely sustain our bodies. Guattari (126) claims this is deeply troubling for modern society: ‘What passes from expression to content and inversely are relatively deterritorialized forms, forms for which deterritorialization has been standardized, cut off from its potential dynamism.’ As such, modern (techno-semiological) society is cut off from the univocal powers that were/are familiar to Indigeneity; rather, our contemporary societies become paralysed, looking for feelings of empowerment in the plane of content, all the while wondering why we feel so powerless to prevent planetary destruction via our own hands. We have become prisoners in the structures of our own making, forgetting that actual power lies just beneath our feet. How strange that we should feel more comfortable in a supermarket than in the wild – that we feel more at home surrounded by systems of signs that have been crafted from the earth while at the same time disconnecting us from the intensive powers of that very same desiring body. As we will see later, the State is complicit with capitalism in maintaining the hierarchical stratifications of society. The two work in lockstep to ensure individual attention is kept focused on consumption, thereby preventing desire from connecting with anything that might challenge the status quo. Capitalism is masterful in redefining itself (via trends, fashion, marketing, etc.), thereby

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ensuring there is always something new to capture desire, and prevent it from manifesting elsewhere. For its part, the State forces recalcitrant individuals/groups into submission. Edward Snowden and Julian Assange are excellent examples of the consequences of directly challenging state authority, though they are merely figureheads, as this dynamic occurs everywhere, everyday: a process we will revisit later (pages 49–51). Deleuze and Guattari claim that Indigenous societies were effective in dealing with this problem by preventing the emergence of the state. They relied heavily on the anthropological studies of Pierre Clastres for the Nomadology plateau/chapter in A Thousand Plateaus, in which they explore the relationship between Indigeneity and the state. Clastres ([1974] 1989: 211), in his book Society Against the State, tells the story of the Apache chieftain Geronimo, who successfully rallies his people to take revenge on an attack by the colonial invaders. After the victory, Geronimo is inspired and wants to persist, but his people decide not to continue because they feel satisfied with their victory. What is important about this story is that the stratifications of that society were not fixed into a hierarchical arrangement by which that society were compelled to obey the signifier of authority; this is an example of Indigeneity holding off the formation of the state by ensuring that the power of desire maintained its transversality rather than being deterritorialized into a system of signs (in this case the power of a centralized individual chieftain). Desire, when flowing freely, rather than being locked into the codifications of a stratified society, can be expressed by a people’s collective will (rather than in obeyance to the will of the One).7 A final comment – or perhaps, a brief divergence – is that it is worth noting that bifurcations can be associated with extraordinary moments of creativity. Friedrich Nietzsche, in his book The Birth of Tragedy, discusses the interchange of the Apollonian (order/reason) and Dionysian (undifferentiated power) aspects of Ancient Greek tragedy. He argues that the theatrical plays of that period were most powerful when the Apollonian and Dionysian were co-expressed through song, music and words. In these periods the intensive real comes to life in the very expression of the performed tragedies. The connection with the rhizome is apparent here; if we consider the Dionysian to be expression and the Apollonian to be reason (content), we can imagine a vitalized univocal art form in which the intensive real arises and Of course, we need to be careful here. We see in pre-Hispanic American societies – for instance, the Mayan and Aztec – deterritorializations that form stratified societies dominated by the will of a leader. However, some connection to the intensive real is maintained by their famous architectural ingenuity and ritualistic practices (the most famous of which is human sacrifice – although the judgmentalism of this practice becomes more complicated when considering the sacrifice of working-class infantryman at the will of wealthy lords during the First World War).



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permeates the social body. Nietzsche ([1872] 2003: 4) writes: ‘In those centuries when the Greek body flourished and the Greek soul bubbled over with life, perhaps there were endemic raptures, visions, and hallucinations which entire communities, entire cultural bodies, shared.’ The diminishment of this power begins when playwrights depart from Dionysian power and focus on Apollonian reason, which marks a departure from the transformative capacities of the tragedies. Over time, Nietzsche writes, the tragedies deteriorate into the comedies (30). And yet, during this transition, great creativity is released. For instance, Homer’s poems, the Iliad and the Odyssey, as texts, leave behind the immediate power of Dionysian expression – the maddening music of the dithyramb (11, 56) – but retain a power that is suggestive of a connection with the expressive mythologies that preceded them. They are a remarkable juncture in which the written word seems to express more than what is signified by the text, where the interventions of Gods can be read as every bit as real as the actions of the heroes. Interestingly, Bruce Smith (1999: 239) in Attending to the O-Factor writes about a similar process in the age of Shakespeare, in which the written word becomes more important than the expressive power of the orator/actor’s body. He insists that the power of Shakespeare’s works is marked by the transition from plays being orally relayed to being written. The creativity of Shakespeare is in the language he uses, and the way it translates the utterances and gestures of the actor’s body, particularly via the expressions of the thorax. Soon after, however, the written word is burdened by the demands of a system of signs (how language should be written). We can also find a similar process in Australia; one of the consequences of the deterritorializations caused by colonization is an explosion of creative forms. The ancient knowledge entangled in the rhizomatic expression of ritual and ceremony finds its way onto canvases, into music and theatre, to create unique art forms that have become international in their appeal.8 Again, we find the transition from an oral culture into written and visual cultures marked by an intensification of power that translates into the creation of unique forms and objects. But in all cases, the threat of dilution, once the deter​ritor​ializ​ation​–rete​rrito​riali​zatio​n process begins, is always present (which is not to deny that the power of art from any culture or time can access the intensive real, as will be discussed). Each of these three bifurcations has a relationship to sound studies – the music of the tragedies, the voice of the actor and the musicianship of Australia’s T h ere are numerous examples: for instance, the rich acting repertoire of David Gulpilil, the music of Yothu Yindi and Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu; the performances of the Bangarra Dance Theatre and the abstract paintings of Kudditji Kngwarreye and Emily Kame Kngwarreye, among many others.


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Indigenous people. Sound – as language, narrative and bodily expression, and as an affective medium of communication and translation – is immediate, intensive and powerful. Norie Neumark (2017: 9) discusses the power of voice in her book Voicetracks where she connects voice with art practices, new materialism and the more-than-human. She writes of voice ‘as movement’, something that ‘traverses the individual body, as well as from and between bodies and spaces, contouring them as it goes, bringing worlds into being’. And Brandon LaBelle (2014: 4), in Lexicon of the Mouth, connects voice with bodily interiorities, reminding us that ‘we experience the voice by feeling it in our body’. Both of these theorists remind us that the voice is an expression of the materiality of the body, and it seems to me there is a powerful connection to be made here for repositioning the human body as voice in the plane of expression, rather than focusing only on the signifying content of the language it expresses. By focusing exclusively on codified systems of signs we risk ignoring the power of the body and its ability to access and produce desire. As a final point, in addition to the insights of theorists like Neumark and Labelle, we can see why the soundwalks of acoustic ecologists (and the listening walks of their contemporary, Max Neuhaus) are of such importance. Their interventions, perhaps, are the beginnings of reconnecting us with the desiring-body Earth via our listening bodies, bringing our awareness to the intensive real. Theirs should not be considered new practices, but as reconnections with ancient practices – perhaps marking newly emergent, univocal territories. All of this, I think, suggests that Indigeneity need not be a label applied to specific cultural groups, but could be a modulating force that exists close to the surface of contemporary civilization, one that acknowledges our bodies are never entirely divorced from the desiring-flows of the land.

The cycle of deterritorialization and reterritorialization We now turn to the diagram’s cyclical process of deter​ ritor​ ializ​ ation​ –rete​ rrito​riali​zatio​n by which capitalism so effectively maintains its control. What Guattari brings to our attention is capitalism’s capacity to control the direction of flows of deterritorialization towards the plane of content and then back towards the desire-capturing strata; thus, all the power of the ground of being is directed towards the signifier (in particular, the commodity). Guattari (2016) writes: lines of flight tend to deterritorialize semiotic processes, to open them up, to connect them to other matters of expression, whilst stratified codings, on the side of the order of ‘things’, of the dominant worldliness tend to syntacticise


Urban Roar [arrange/order] them and to cut them off from any meshing with the intensive real [plane of expression] (120–1; my interpolation in square brackets)

Critical to this understanding is that a deterritorialization is also a line of flight, but one that has been reterritorialized. As diagrammed, the line of flight continues only if it is able to move beyond the plane of content (discussed in the next section). A deterritorialization is a small flight of desire that sweeps us away, but once we attach that intensive movement to a signifier, that desire is instantly recoded (stratified) into the semiotic order, in which our minds and bodies are so comprehensively trapped. This cyclical process occurs in an instant. As seen in the Figure 1b, striations rake across the plane of expression, segmenting it into hierarchical forms and strictly ordering its flows of desire. Thus, intensive power is expressed via the organizational patterns of society. An apt metaphor is the aqueduct – or, as it is now known, the efficient network of pipes and dams providing each building with water. Its efficiency lies in its capacity to provide us with drinking/cleaning water; but the water in-itself, taken from the dam, can express no power beyond that which society’s infrastructures allow (unless a dam wall breaks, of course.). Compare this to the diversity of flows we find in the wild: the tranquil calm, frenzied storms, and so on. In similar ways, all of nature’s forces have been controlled/commodified for the benefits of our civilization and/or the profit-drive of IWC. Despite this immense destruction, we remain transfixed on the signifiers, attached to the objects and infrastructures of our making; however, these significations hold no power, except the desire we invest in them. As an example, think of the awe in which we hold a media star, shining brightly from on high that captures our attention; the desire that is located in our bodies streams towards this media star. But the media star is an illusion, propagated by an apparatus that fixes their image (not the actual them, whoever they are) as signifier, into a plane of content (an Instagram image, for instance). Or, more insidiously, the increasing political power of evangelisms (an emerging ‘black hole’, discussed later) which, at the time of writing, are claiming their rightful dominion over the earth, preparing for the ‘Kingdom of Heaven’ (Bolsanaro’s Brazil, Trump’s America, Morrison’s Australia – all three leaders are, or play at being, evangelical). Evangelicals place their faith in the sign of the cross, to which all their desire flows only to be drawn back into the stratified powers of the politico-religious complex – planet be damned. Or we can consider the processes of shopping in those temples of consumerism – surrounding ourselves with commodities that we fill with desire, corpses of a once-vital earth stacked upon shelves and reanimated by our own desiring powers. The point here is

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that the entire cycle is fuelled by the capturing of our desire. This is a type of metatransference in which we invest our power in the products and processes of capitalism. What Guattari so brilliantly shows us is that these very same cyclical flows are also the propagators of lines of flight; thus, escape is to be found in the very codes of capitalism and not in an oppositional position. As mentioned earlier, in the diagram, the stratifications actually pass through the plane of expression. The stratifications order (or ‘syntacticize’, as Guattari puts it) the plane of expression into rigid stratifications. This results in two movements. First, rather than desire moving freely, as it does in a rhizomatic arrangement, the flow of desire is directed along very specific pathways, or conduits, which carefully control our possible experiences. Second, the stratifications force society into an economicmanagerial ordering (this will be discussed further in Figure 1c).9 Guattari (2016: 46) writes: ‘People are so lost, so maddened by the deterritorialization of the gears of the social, of space and time, like frightened animals, power feels the need to calm them down, to put [soft] music in lifts, to make them parade and to channel them in a continuum of spaces modelled by design techniques.’ This passage describes well the conditions of the global city, which are carefully structured to guide consumers into controlled habits of spending and consuming, and ensuring recalcitrant movements (with the support of the state) are kept impoverished, imprisoned or, ideally, made irrelevant. The entire apparatus is governed to carefully modulate the flow of desire such that the modern human, who has been violently unbound from the desiring-body Earth, experiences just enough flows of desire (via deterritorializations) to keep sane, without being able to fully integrate with the intensive real via the plane of expression. Guattari’s comment, of ‘power feeling it needs to calm people down’ is, I think, consistent with critiques of the urban condition. Architect and critic Rem Koolhaas, who most recently suggested that real social and ecological transformation is to be found in the countryside (2020), has been highly critical of the urban environment, claiming capitalism has transformed it into ‘Junkspace’ (Koolhaas T h ere is a greater discussion to be had here on the molar/molecular, which I touch on only briefly in my text. Peter Merriman (2019: 67) provides a useful summary. He writes: ‘On the one hand, molar masses or bodies are “punctual”, highly organized, easily represented and expressed, and are perceived as clearly demarcated and bounded assemblages or aggregates that are frequently aligned with state and non-state actors.’ (Merriman cites Deleuze and Guattari 1988: 57, 216, 222, 294). He also writes: ‘Molecular movements, on the other hand, are vital, incessant, and unruly, operating below the threshold of perception and associated with becomings of innumerable kinds. Becomings are, here, apprehended as “molecular” and “minoritarian”, and they may be aligned with minor or molecular political actions that traverse, cross-cut and continually undermine molar imaginations, for molecular movements constitute the vital potential to “thwart and break through the great worldwide organization”.’ (Merriman cites Deleuze and Guattari 1998: 291, 292, 216). Note: Merriman’s page references are from a 1988 edition of A Thousand Plateaus rather than the 2004 edition quoted in this book.



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2002). Junkspace is not garbage (which could be quite useful) but the redundant space left behind by capitalism. It is built space lacking vitality. It is numb and sterile, designed for functional human behaviours that serve the purposes of profit-driven capitalism, which cares nothing for the vitality of life and the people who live within it. Koolhaas sees in the countryside a chance to escape the spatial redundancies of the city. Although he argues that the countryside can also be captured by a ‘Cartesian’ regime (as he puts it), we can also find in it actual places of experimentation and transformation. Somewhat similarly, philosopher Gernot Böhme, in his book Critique of Aesthetic Capitalism (2017a), brings our attention to the ‘aesthetic economy’ in which capitalism stages atmospheres that normalize our desire to obtain commodities, especially luxury goods, which, in actuality, have no value beyond their signified status. Billboards, shopfronts and faint domesticated musaks conspire to generate atmospheres of control in which consumers are directed to equate useless commodities with need, thereby ignoring their own ‘emotional economy’ of care. Similarly to Guattari, both Koolhaas and Böhme direct our attention towards an urban environment saturated with significations of control, where capitalism diffuses every part of our life, fixing our attention on the plane of content, ensuring our desires are provided just enough sustenance, without risking that we ever feel satisfied, grounded or connected. It was an ability to draw sustenance from the intensive real that enabled Indigenous societies to thrive for millennia; our civilization, by comparison, is heading towards ecological and social collapse after only a few hundred years (depending on how you measure it) because we valorize planetary destruction via our wilful possession by a system of signs. However, unlike what may be possible for Koolhaas, not all of us are able to escape to the countryside! Urban sites must also become sites of transformation; the atmosphere of the city requires rupturing, even if it is only to momentarily enmesh our bodies with the intensive real.

Faciality and the white wall of signification Faciality has been labelled as the white wall of signification in Figures 1 and 1b. The concept of the white wall of signification is introduced by Deleuze and Guattari in the Faciality plateau/chapter in A Thousand Plateaus ([1980] 2004: 209), always in conjunction with black holes (discussed later). Together the white wall of signification and the black holes form a ‘face’. The white wall of signification bounces any line of flight that escapes the plane of content back towards the cyclical deterritorialization - reterritorialization processes of capitalism. It can be thought of as a last line of defence keeping the ordering principles of society in check. A line of

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flight that breaks through the plane of content can also end in extreme subjectivity, or a black hole, which is a destructive force that turns desire against society and/or against the self (see Figure 1c). At the risk of complicating matters, faciality can also be considered as an abstract machine, an ordering force operating in the background of things. An abstract machine is impossible to apprehend due to its abstraction; however, due to its machinic nature it is always producing – things, significations, behaviours and so on. Deleuzian scholar Ian Buchanan (2020: 45) writes that a way to understand the abstract machine is to ask the question: ‘Whatever could have happened for things to come to this?’ Thus, it is an ordering principle we are not necessarily aware of, operating in the background and giving shape to the real that we come to consider normal. As an abstract machine, faciality has no fixed image and yet its effects are encountered everywhere. Should a desiring line of flight break though the plane of content, a face instantly appears, either resignifying it (as it bounces off the wall) or collapsing it into extreme subjectivity (as it is sucked towards a black hole). Let me hasten to add that there is no romantic or heroic emancipatory subject associated with a line of flight. Rather, it can be a painful, even banal, reassembling process. Everyone experiences this: a scolded child when transgressing the rules, late party-goers subjected to the disapproving looks of workers, whistle-blowers calling out the hypocrisy of power. Anyone who challenges the status quo – the order of things – will encounter the face. The point is not to overcome the face but to recognize it, so that we might discover creative ways to direct flows of desire towards more vital existences. And to do this, we need to reconfigure its ordering principles to reveal other Universes of Value. The ordering principle of the face, in the diagram, exerts a downward pressure. This is the ordering principle in action, ensuring the social strata stays aligned and segmented. Admittedly, this is not the best way to diagram the process. Buchanan (2020: 34) brings our attention to the fact that Deleuze and Guattari use resonance as a way to consider the ordering principle of faciality, in which an assemblage is locked into a resonating pattern, where behaviours, actions and materials are mobilized to direct and control desire (Buchanan uses the example of a Roman battalion). This is similar to the effects of a standing wave that locks water into a specific visual pattern, depending on the frequency and dynamics of the radiated frequencies. Indeed, the sonorous patterns of sound provide an excellent example of an abstract machine that is itself invisible and yet highly productive in its (visible) effects as it enforces all affected materials into repetitive expression. In keeping with this, perhaps concentric circles centred on the plane of expression and radiating outwards across the diagram, with a figurehead (emperor, priest, manager, etc.)


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sitting at the centre would better suit the face’s ordering force. However, the arrow pointing downwards serves the same purpose more straightforwardly. Its downward force is, essentially, the pressure we feel to conform and continue our role in maintaining the order of things. As stated, the face takes on infinite forms, and can appear anywhere. It is described by Deleuze and Guattari, in particular, as the European white face: of Christ (in the paintings, at least), of the priest, of the father, of the manager – the colonizer – staring us down, and demanding subservience. This Europeanizing of the face seems less relevant now, as we find it has comfortably transmogrified into the shape of dictatorial leaders globally – and not just human faces but also technological faces and landscape faces. In its most recent manifestation, faciality transforms itself into the algorithmic coding of social media, which determines our habits and actions as we use screen technologies – an insidious face that has most remarkably captured our attention. By harvesting and selling our data, algorithms (a type of AI) effectively control our consumer experiences and even our political lives, transforming our very bodies into profit-driven commodities. As for landscape faces, we can consider China’s terraforming of military islands as it increasingly expands its control of the Pacific; a quick search on Google Images presents a range of seemingly disfigured islands, built as state-sanctioned instruments of war, which incidentally have a striking resemblance to some of Deleuze and Guattari’s ([1980] 2004: 203) sketched despotic faces (to my mind at least) – faces as small as screens and as large as islands. It is this capacity of capitalism – served by the state (whether it be democratic, communist or otherwise) – to endlessly recreate itself that makes it so staggeringly effective at maintaining control of our desires. Guattari (2016:181) writes, ‘The particular facialities with which we are dealing are linked to power formations that are themselves inseparable from the ensemble of interactions in the social field’ – that is, the systems of signs that control our experiences are synonymous with faciality. I have diagrammed this such that the face will reveal itself, in all its power, only when a line of flight breaks through the plane of content. For instance, a teenager or divorcee who departs from the expected milestones of life will confront the judgemental face of authority everywhere, likely including their own internal voice. It is a most powerful and ubiquitous force, created by us and turned against us: the guilt of the church, the baton of the police, the scowl of the parent. He goes on to say: with faciality, rhizomatic possibility has been systematically destroyed or overcoded, to the profit of an arborescent [hierarchical] possibility. The entire

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order of the possible must inscribe itself on this substance of the signifier. . . .The intensive matter of expression will no longer be able to organize itself freely in a rhizome. (ibid: 185)

Keep in mind, this is not necessarily a call for anarchy, or a demand for liberation or freedom. For instance, Indigeneity possessed laws, which were/are grounded – territorialized – in the rhizome; but this law was able to provide for everyone’s needs, and, through ritual, connect bodies with the intensive powers of the land. But the faciality we speak of has no interest in grounding our bodies in the intensive real. Rather, it keeps our focus on the signifier, and carefully manages our relationship with desire while keeping a specific hierarchy in place that issues demands, orders and controls that we ignore at our peril. It is also important to recognize that the face exists in all cultural formations. It certainly appears in Indigeneity. However, in this case, the face doesn’t disconnect from the personal or social body; instead, its powers remain with the body, enabling collective movements of expression during rituals, with the use of masks, tattoos, face painting or perhaps the etching of figures on rock walls. In A Thousand Plateaus, Deleuze and Guattari ([1980] 2004: 195) explain that the powers of faciality, when remaining connected with the human head and body, enable the Indigenous body (individual/collective) to become-other through ritual. However, in our contemporary society, we willingly transfer our power to the disconnected and ubiquitous face of authority. In the advanced stages of bifurcation in which we now live, we have become trapped in a perfect system of control, driven by the codification of our own desire (which homogenizes bodies). To achieve this, all power is transferred to the face; in turn, it orders flows of desire to ensure our bodies are kept just satiated enough, while ensuring the systems of signs (infrastructures/languages/symbols) maintain the cycle of capitalist control. Without the attention of our collectively focused desire, faciality would instantly dissolve. Its gravitational forces would evaporate, causing innumerable and erratic flights of desire, which, in turn, would transform the homogenous social body into so many heterogeneous expressions. This could be fun, for a moment, but without being grounded in the intensive real (the territorialities of the desiring-body Earth), it would more likely be terrifying. It is easier to placate the authority figure who, if nothing else, presents security (even if planetary destruction is the price). Power is not hierarchized in Indigeneity. Rather, power is drawn from the intensive real and is horizontally distributed, enabling the collective and respectful expression of heterogeneous individual and


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social bodies (including those spirits and totems that inhabit the land/earth/sea/ sky). It is this type of territory that a line of flight hopes to discover. The face, now disconnected from the plane of expression (the human body and the desiring-body Earth), conceals itself as an invisible and omnipresent abstract machine that, rather than empowering the ritualized body of Indigeneity, enforces the fixity of power structures. Guattari (2016: 180) sums it up nicely: The ultimate paradigm for the face is a ‘that’s how it is!’ expressing the semiotic seizure of power which shows that, whatever else, something will be signified, once and for all. The ‘thing’ will be situated, localized in the coordinates of diverse power formations, it will be kept in hand, it will not be allowed to take flight, escape from the dominant system of signification and come to threaten the social-semiotic order in place.

This story of entrapment can easily lead to despondency, particularly for the experimental artist who wants nothing more than to play and discover the new. But by diagramming the captured flows of desire, a way out is revealed – lines of flight appear as passageways through the white wall of signification and beyond. As we will see, the line of flight might involve the artist donning a mask of their own. This mask is duplicitous: its magic will make the artist invisible to the face or perhaps even allow them to temporarily metamorphize into an outward form of authority. Alternatively, a line of flight might escape the face entirely, and find a passageway that dissolves systems of signs, thereby transforming the body’s relationship with the real. We will now turn to a discussion of both possibilities.

The left and right lines of flight There are two lines of flight in this diagram that have passed through, and therefore left behind, the plane of content (which disappears in Figure 1c). Keep in mind that each line of flight is a multiplicity; that is, it is not pre-determined but forms a trajectory in relation to its unfolding process. The two lines of flight take different directions. The left leads back to the rhizome, not as a returnto-earth ideal, but as a revitalization of relations and new Universes of Value. The right leads towards a-signifying experiences, particularly synchronicity (and, therefore, away from Guattari and towards Jung). A black hole has been mapped to each line of flight, signifying the dangers inherent in each. This is in keeping with the diagram’s inclusion of three possible outcomes of a line of flight: the first is a deterritorialization, revealed as such once the plane of content

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has reterritorialized it back into the strata; the second breaks through the plane of content and comes to form the destructive subjectivity of a black hole; and the third continues its path towards a new territorial relationship with the desiringbody Earth. For further discussion on the three possible outcomes of a line of flight, see Buchanan (2020: 89) and Deleuze and Guattari ([1980] 2004: 250–3). In the first instance, it is important that we don’t perceive the lines of flight in the romantic sense of emancipation or liberation, which would imply ideology. The objective is not to achieve utopia, but, rather, to find ways in which flights of desire might weave their way through the dictatorship of the signifier to discover new ways of grounding the body with the desiring-body Earth (the left line of flight) and connect with synchronistic becomings (the right line of flight). Perhaps it’s simply my reading, but Guattari is highly elusive about what a line of flight is or could be. My take on this is that by defining a line of flight, he would be representing some thing/process/action via a concept, which would then itself become a signifier. In so doing, he would simply add another signifier to the semiotic system, which capitalism would incorporate into its processes for capturing desire; that is, the lines of flight would become redundant (just one more deterritorialization, as a result of its instant reterritorialization into the strata). Rather, he suggests how lines of flight might form and, perhaps, leaves it up to each of us to embark on a trajectory. He writes, ‘either one opts for the stratification of power, one’s most intimate being included, or one agrees to follow lines of flight of desire and to rid oneself of pre-established equipment, dominant redundancies, constraining significations’ (Guattari 2016: 53). And there are certainly many reasons why one wouldn’t want to escape stratification. The pay’s good, Wi-Fi works and everything feels pretty safe; well, that’s if you are one of the economic beneficiaries, and if the whole system doesn’t collapse on your watch (and eventually, it will). But for the experimental artist, there is little choice. Their desire to discover the new will always cause them to opt for lines of flight (of course, we could say the same for philosophers, scientists and dreamers, and so on, but the focus of this book is artistic). Before proceeding to a discussion of the two lines of flight, we should note that both planes disappear in this image. They have merged and are entangled in the univocal entanglements of the rhizome, as it is discovered by bodies that escape the stratifications of power and its capturing of desire. The striated can be seen to re-emerge as a small arborescent structure to the very bottomleft of the image. These shoots emerge from the rhizome to create a temporary

Figure 1c  The left and right lines of flight.

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display of hierarchization, before its death and return to the rhizome. This is suggestive of an anarchic model of society in which the permanent authority of hierarchical society is replaced with a multitude of temporary ascendancies. Though desirable, this need not be power-sharing; for instance, it could be a warlike situation in which small bands ascend momentarily and collapse again (as described by Clastres in the prior example). Or it could be a temporary upswell of mass-movements that momentarily create their own laws, with the temporary formation of anarchic societies (autonomous zones) that can spring up during protests, as they did internationally during the Occupy Wall Street protests. These can also lead to longer-term rhizomatic structures within the societal constraints of stratification to form what Brian Massumi calls ‘autonomous zones’ of resistance that can ‘release postcapitalist potential into the wild, to proliferate’ (Massumi 2018: 87). However it is perceived, the point is, when the body remerges with the rhizome, the desiring-flows that were once locked into the contained deterritorialization – reterritorialization cycles between the plane of expression’s power and the plane of content’s significations become all at once expansive and revitalizing. However, this is as far as the diagram will take us regarding the possible modelling of new societies (with the exception of one more case study provided later); I am more interested to consider pathways that might drive the artist towards synchronistic becomings. We now turn to a more detailed discussion of both lines of flight.

Left line of flight The left line of flight traces a path through the white wall of signification. This path requires what Brian Massumi (2018: 88) calls ‘creative duplicity’. An oppositional stance is counter-productive insofar as it is desirable to faciality, as it can easily respond in two ways. First, it will crush you (as Massumi puts it) whether it be via arrest, losing your job or becoming isolated, and so on. Second, whatever it is you do will no doubt end up on a T-shirt or a poster or a book, and make someone a lot of money. Thus drawn into the system of signs, the flight becomes coded and disempowered. Julian Assange and Edward Snowden are heroes for their courage in standing up to the corruption of authorities; however, by taking an oppositional stance they are being crushed, and even serve as a warning to the rest of us as to why we should keep quiet. Could their actions have been enacted subversively? Is recognition necessary? Creative duplicity presents a different action. It requires the wearing of a mask, facing faciality with a face. In the diagram the left line of flight orientates the artist to


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face the white wall of signification, performing a seductive dance as part of its flight. The face watches the mask warily, but without recourse, as it is convinced it is watching itself, which is all it can tolerate. The artist who creates in the city must wear a mask if they are to gain permission from councils and other institutions to enact transformative practices in public places: thus, duplicity is all at once creative, productive and smart.10 It is instructive, for example, that the environmental artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude, who wrapped large tracts of land in fabric and made environmental-scale installations, considered the work of gaining permission from authorities to be part of the act of making; this is not to suggest they were duplicitous, only that they knew that thoughtful interaction with the face was crucial to the act of creative production.11 The black hole associated with the left line of flight is related to microfascism. Guattari (2016: 72) writes of this type of black hole: ‘Cut off from every creative context, reduced to just corporeal semiotics, sexual desire is constrained to invest in a micro-fascist politics. Desire . . . tumbles ineluctably towards forms of tyranny.’ Note that the rise of conspiracy theories worldwide – most famously that perpetrated by QAnon, who believed Donald Trump would save us from a Democrat-led international paedophile sex-ring – is an example of the type of collapse that can occur when normative signifiers are rejected. The fact that these groups, typically attracting fragmented individuals, are being encouraged for political reasons to embody fascist views demonstrates that the black hole is not just a danger for one person trying to escape the dictatorship of the signifier: it can affect an entire social ecology. Entire societies can collapse into these black holes, as did Nazi Germany, a cultist nation driven by hate (and let’s not forget that Hitler started his career as an artist – a sure enough warning of the dangers inherent in this line of flight, whether as individual or social trajectory). The individual who challenges faciality risks internalizing and intensifying desire by determining the face as something real and threatening that needs to be destroyed (for Nazi Germany, all non-Aryans; for Evangelicals, all non-believers and so on). Unable to recognize the illusory system of signs generated by an imperceptible abstract machine, their desire coagulates into the form of a specific face that they seek to destroy. All the energy of this T h is line of flight was implied in Sonic Rupture, where I argued that sound artists should find a way to work with industry and government to create art installations that create a-signifying ruptures, enabling an engagement with the intensive real. A similar study can be found in Sven Anderson’s (2016) ‘The Incidental Person: Reviewing the Identity of the Urban Acoustic Planner’. 11 For further information see, https​:/​/it​​sartl​​aw​.or​​g​/202​​0​/07/​​28​/ar​​t​-law​​-trib​​ute​-t​​o​-chr​​isto-​​and​​-j​​eanne​​ -clau​​de/. 10

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flight of desire begins to turn in on itself (as per the spiralling movement shown in the diagram) in an absolute desire to destroy the face (as identified by the individual/group). By desiring the destruction of the face, it comes to destroy the self, the social body, the landscape – everything is sucked in and destroyed. Guattari (2016: 88) writes that black holes can ‘capture the energies of desire in an infernal process of deterritorialization, trigger a mad desire for the extermination of everything that escapes the common norm and which even leads to a will to self-destruction’. In Figure 1c, the left line of flight can avoid the gravitational pull of the black hole by maintaining a careful, transfixing dance with the face, until it successfully re-integrates with the rhizome. But to achieve this, it must reflect the face back at itself; that is, it must be creatively duplicitous. Upon the left line of flight’s termination in the rhizome, the desiring-body Earth floods the body (behind the mask) with desire. This is not a return home, but simply the emergence of a new Universe of Value that transforms the immanent now. It is most likely that any line of flight that makes it to the rhizome will be deterritorialized back into the strata as per Figure 1a – such is the ubiquitous power of the face. However, once the left line of flight has been completed, the temporary escapee is now aware of the ordering force of faciality. Instead of being locked in the capitalist cycles of desire expressed in Figure 1b, they now oscillate between the deter​ritor​ ializ​ation​–rete​rrito​riali​zatio​n rhythm, as emphasized in Figure 1a. This becomes a type of creative movement that is able to play with social codes and create new relationships with the land, rather than being in lockstep with the subservient and potentially destructive relationships enforced by faciality.

Left line of flight case study Before moving on to the right line of flight, I want to turn to a case study of two events held by the Australian arts group  Not Yet It’s Difficult, called Assembly for the Future (2020) and 2970° The Boiling Point (2015). These events present excellent examples of the ways in which artists can create anarchic models of social organization. 2970° The Boiling Point was held on the Gold Coast in Queensland in 2015 and 2017, and Assembly for the Future was held as an event on Zoom in 2020 due to the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions. Both events practised a model of social organization that produced lines of flight towards new possible rhizomatic models of society, where the public was invited to collectively imagine multiple new futures. In both forums invited intellectuals, academics and activists presented provocations on specific issues affecting society, including (but not limited to) ableism, the environment, Indigenous rights, robotics and


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feminism. The public participants were then broken into small groups of five to ten, with each group moderated by a selected artist. The role of the artist was to listen to people in the group and help guide a conversation towards a consensus on the preceding provocation. In the case of 2970°, a proposition was put forward by the provocateur and each group was required to cast its vote on the proposition, which was either passed or rejected by the entire assembly. In the case of Assembly for the Future, each moderating artist was asked to create an artwork in response to the group’s conversation, which were then included in online repositories entitled ‘dispatches for the future’.12 What was remarkable about this performative modelling was how it placed listening at the centre of every activity: the assembly listened to the provocation and responses to the provocations, the artists listened to the breakout groups and the  assembly listened to the artist–moderators summarizing the views of the assembly with voice or artworks. Assembly co-curator David Pledger (forthcoming) based this process on Not Yet It’s Difficult’s performance methodology, which he calls body listening. He writes: body listening is a process which prepares the body to register and utilize spatial and performative awareness. At its core is the notion that the body is a discriminating organism able to send and receive physical information; the methodology operates on the premise that all properly functioning bodies have a sense of physical presence (proprioception) which when amplified confers a heightened sense of awareness on itself and the external world (sometimes called exteroception). The process of amplification through a refined set of exercises cultivates a capacity for sensing shifts in the space without seeing or hearing them.

Each listening body becomes a molecular movement, which is actively encouraged to be both expressed and heard. The assembly is molar insofar as it acts as a collective body, coming to resonate via a collective ‘decision’. It would be tempting to reduce this to a democratic process, which, at its worst, is a tyranny of the masses (rather than a protectorate of the minority, as it should be), but in both assemblies, discussion was organized such that the expressive desire of each body – its words and listening – became integral to the collective expression. This, I think, was particularly powerful when consolidated as an artwork of collective expression, rather than a majority decision. But even in the latter case, the majority For access to the dispatches, see ‘Assembly for the Future’, Bleed Festival, 2020, The Things We Did Next, website by Alex Kelly and David Pledger, https​:/​/ww​​w​.the​​thing​​swedi​​dnext​​.org/​​​assem​​bly forthe-future/.


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decision could emerge only within the respectful conversations of the collective. The assembly, I think, is consistent with the small arborescent structure emerging from the rhizome in Figure 1c. But this arborescence is (and should be) shortlived; it dies back into the rhizome, allowing for other vertical growth. Both assemblies demonstrated how a society might organize itself so that it makes space for the power of body, voice and listening within the larger organization of a social assembly. In this rhizomatic structure, stratifications cannot take hold, as the power is shifted from the provocateur towards the assembly who collectively pass or deny the propositions. It is a form of Indigeneity that subverts the state, insofar as it allows for the equal expression of desire across the social body, which ensures figureheads remain presenters of possibilities rather than signifiers of power. Furthermore, it is a form of social organization that values the artist not only as a maker of objects but also as a facilitator of happenings, well placed to guide the singularity of the event towards new possible outcomes. Unlike hierarchical stratifications, this model encourages the growth and death of arborescence – without any clear leader; heterogeneous experiences of power abound, with each person knowing that their own voice has been heard and absorbed into the outcome. As such, it demonstrates that the left line of flight is also a social flight. It is true that this brief moment of territoriality quickly re-stratifies; the assembly ends, and its participants are absorbed into the broader matrix of social organization. However, those lines of flight experienced by each participant linger as an experience of the possibilities of temporary arborescent structures that continue to shape their relationship with the real.

Right line of flight The right line of flight is of greater concern to this book, and in a moment, we will temporarily leave behind Guattari’s semiotics and turn to other scholars who explore mind–body parallelism, and the creative possibilities this reveals to the artistic practitioner. In the right line of flight the artist simply ignores the system of signs, in their personal discovery of new Universes of Value. The black hole, in this case, is labelled as madness, paranoia and solitariness. Leaving the normative system of signs is a dangerous act. We find ourselves with no reference, because we have left behind normative organizational structures in the desire to invent new expressions. Solitariness is not a bad thing in and of itself, but madness and paranoia can emerge if the only reference one has


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are self-created semiotics. Attaching meaning to things that no one else shares means losing our capacity to share signs (language, dress, gesticulations) that typically keep us bound to a group. Connecting madness and creativity is so common it’s almost a platitude. But the act of rupturing systems of signs that we might share with others is essential to the creative act, which is why this black hole is of particular danger to the artistic explorer. Note, however, that this line of flight (similarly to the left line of flight) bends around a black hole. This is because the gravitational pull of a black hole is so strong that its effects cannot be ignored. In fact, it provides the very momentum essential to a line of flight’s path; thus, the effects of a black hole must always be contended with during a line of flight. The point is to be aware of the dangers of the black hole as the flight unfolds, while also using its gravitational pull to guide the line towards new territorialities. In the case of the right line of flight, upon avoiding the black hole, it terminates in the territorialities of the creative, inner world. As we will see, it is the right line of flight that produces personal encounters with autonomous affectivities, by which we become aware of those more-thanhuman intensive forces to which we are subject. But before we consider this, we will turn to a discussion of autonomous affectivities and mythology.

The flow of autonomous affectivities There are two flows of autonomous affectivities active in this section; both are connected to the plane of expression. In the bottom-left corner, they flow through the rhizome, intimately connected to the desiring-body Earth – the territorialities of Indigeneity – where mythology vitalizes the everyday. To the right, they emerge from the plane of expression in relation to ambiances/ atmospheres (the topic of Part 2) manifesting between the acausal relationship of body and mind. This second type of flow of autonomous affectivities requires greater explanation and will be comprehensively discussed at the end of Part 1. Note that the left section of the plane of content has disappeared. This is because synchronicity (described later), as an acausal relationship, is less interested in recognizing signifiers than it is in attributing meaning to experiences that are seemingly irrational. There is no longer a pre-determined wall of signification or an ordering force of faciality towards which we must map our experiences. Rather, meaning is intuitively generated. But again, this will be taken up in relation to Figure 2.

Figure 1d  The flow of autonomous affectivities.

Let’s now turn our attention to the relationship of the autonomous affectivity with the rhizome. (For the remainder of the explanation of Figure 1d, I will refer to autonomous affectivities as archetypes, as it is their manifestation as myth that is of most interest here.) To begin our exploration of commonalties between Deleuze and Guattari, and Jung, it is interesting to note a point made by the educationalphilosophy scholars Semetsky and Delpech-Ramey (2012: 76) that ‘[r]hizome as a model of thinking includes a somewhat “underground”, unconscious dimension. Indeed, Jung used the same biological metaphor of a rhizome as Deleuze.’ This is fascinating, and an excellent example of the crossovers between these thinkers that will be taken up in more detail later. The rhizome is located beneath the plane of expression in Figures 1 and 1d, which is also the location of the collective unconscious (beneath the realm of expression/experience); this is to imply that Indigeneity was/is more connected with the desiring-flows of the unconscious. This is not to romanticize, but simply to say that, in addition to their social and technological innovations, Indigeneity also prioritized an ethical relationship between people and land. This connection – brought to life though mythology, magic (see later) and ritual – vitalized the body in ways difficult, if not impossible, to access in our own techno-semiological assemblages. It is interesting to speculate that Jung’s discovery of the archetypes might be part of our own society becoming rhizomatic, insofar as our reconnection with the collective unconscious also reconnects us with the powers of the intensive real. Jung’s studies of the archetypes demonstrate his respect for the rituals, stories and narratives of ancient cultures and the ways in which they experienced the real, relative to contemporary civilization. This is something he seemingly shares with both Deleuze and Guattari. In a wonderful passage, Guattari (2016: 239) writes: When today musicologists transcribe so-called ‘primitive’ musics using Western notation, they don’t fully consider to what extent they are missing the singularity of their object. Secret relations may exist between those musics and certain incantatory rituals, certain prosodic systems linked to ‘magic’ phrases . . . perhaps their life is assembled according to rhythms of great amplitude, which we have lost any capacity to discern, haunted as we are by our own uniformly isorhythmic refrains.

In this passage, Guattari brings to our attention what is possible within the conditions of univocality. When our attention is no longer fixed on the signifier, and the intensive real is free to express itself through our bodies, magic becomes real. Magic, here, does not refer to some fantastical break with the laws of physics

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(as illusionist and magicians seemingly conjure), but the transformative flows of desire that evoke vital interconnections between humans and the more-thanhuman (land, other animals, dreams, etc.). When our ideas and perceptions cease to be shaped by the demands of the plane of content, the possible manifestations of desire diversify. In the aforementioned example, Guattari refers to music. Reducing the soundings of Indigeneity to Western notation is to reduce their expressiveness to the stratification of staves, where expressive possibility is controlled by the structures of rhythm, melody and harmony. There is little room for the singularity of ‘incantatory rituals’ here. As discussed earlier, a singularity is that which is both actual and virtual, always becoming, like a giant wheel disappearing into the unknown and dragging back intensive vitalities typically beyond apprehension. This is an apt metaphor for the power of incantatory ritual. Guattari’s reference in this quote to amplitude is also interesting. Rather than the social body resonating according to the invisible ordering force of faciality, we can, instead, imagine the rituals of Indigeneity increasing the amplitude of the intensive real as expressed through the bodies that conjure it (feet dance the earth, dirge cycles perturbate with each iteration, vitalities inhabit masks and body paint) until they resonate with such power that new Universes of Value appear. In the rhizome there is no fixed real (as determined by stratifications) but, rather, differential emergences of intensive flows of desire that recreate the real. In modernity and the contemporary city, isorhythmic refrains are a reference to those musical cycles that repeat again and again, without deviation. It is the changeless repetition of content; think of the perfect recreation of a musical score or audio-engineered media (records, CDs, streaming). The desires they evoke with each repetition are instantly reterritorialized, trapping music into signifying refrains; and, despite its temporary beauty, sublimity or fascination, each repetition directs it inevitably towards redundancy (as a test, put your favourite song on loop, and keep listening – it is likely any amplification of desire will be limited by a compulsion to flick the off-switch (though admittedly, young children seem to love such repetition)). It is perhaps still possible to use music to dance forth an incantation, but given the separation of art forms (described in relation to Figure 1a) this is more likely achieved by idiosyncratic, momentary expressions than by the restrictive aesthetics of institutional performances.

Mythology That the archetypes flow freely through the rhizome is evidenced by the extraordinary diversity of spirits and creatures found in mythology. Australia


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alone thrived and thrives with multiple deities and spirits that inhabit landforms and sky, guiding everyday life with their narratives. Here in my home of southeast Melbourne, Boon Wurrung elders speak of Bunjil, the eagle spirit that watches over all things (Briggs 2014), a story I embody as truth, not because I believe that there is a giant, physical eagle in the sky, but because I believe archetypal energies affected the Indigenous people of this land with this imagemanifestation. This, for me, makes Bunjil as real as the intensities that drive its narratives. Carl Jung ([1954] 1968; [1944] 1974), Joseph Campbell and MarieLouise von Franz (discussed in Part 2) are foremost Western thinkers who considered the concept of mythology seriously. Campbell was influenced by Jung – most famously his studies of the hero mythology – and, like Jung, he discovered common symbols across cultures that he recognized as archetypes. Both scholars explained archetypes as emanating from a transversal collective unconscious, familiar to all cultures but experienced differentially as felt affects. The collective unconscious is an empowering concept as it presents the possibility of cultural mythologies being equal expressions of transversal intensities, differentiated by their geographical emergences. Unlike stratified societies where a colonizing truth is exerted as a downward pressure by the authority of the face – whether it be God, King, Reason or Capitalism and so on – rhizomatic arrangements allow for multiplicities of truths/beliefs, and the possibility that each belief is driven by underlying, pre-personal, more-than-human intensities, what I am calling autonomous affectivities. And it is the roar of these autonomous affectivities, made mute by the signifying systems of urban life, with which our societies should (re)connect. The urban roar is mythic, in so far as it amplifies the intensive real. We could imagine this as the cry of a mythological beast or deity, demanding the attention of the human race, who have become beholden to cities reflecting nothing other than their own narcissistic image. But this is not a roar of anger or revenge. It is a roar of intensive energy desiring to be heard, and thus connected, with the life required for its manifestation. The possibility of spirits inhabiting the earth – or pantheism – is not necessarily strange to sound studies insofar as sound is connected with a sense of mystery and the unknown. The respected audio engineer Barry Blesser,13 in collaboration with Linda-Ruth Salter (2006), connected the practices of shamanism with the reverberant qualities of a cave, or its voice, in the opening pages of their book Spaces Speak, Are You Listening? R. Murray Schafer’s (1977) most powerful writing Blesser, among other achievements, defined the ‘eigentone’ as the measure of standing waves in a given interior space (Blesser 2001).


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in his book Soundscape, in my opinion, is his exploration of mythology and the ways in which sound was used to explain creation stories. Preceding both of these thinkers, Marshall McLuhan and Edmund Carpenter (1960) gave us the concept of acoustic space, which brought our awareness to the sonic qualities of experience and its allowance for alternative cultural understandings of the real. And Salomé Voegelin, especially via the book and concept of Sonic Possible Worlds (2014), opens the possibility of the listening-focused auditory imagination as a pluralizing force through which soundings manifest uniquely across multiple listening bodies; therefore, any one sound is simultaneously a multiplicity of possible worlds that emerge through the experiences of the listener. This resonates with the idea of an archetype as a differential, more-than-human intensity that can manifest in an infinite number of ways, as expressed by the geographical, cultural and phenomenological conditions of its emergence. The autonomous affectivity may well be a way to understand the emergence of pantheistic deities as manifested intensities; like sounds, these forces can be understood to reveal themselves as multiplicities. There are attempts to diminish these views among sound scholars, particularly through the concept of the ‘audiovisual litany’ (Sterne 2003). This somewhat pejorative term considers scholarship emphasizing the importance of sound and listening to be a litany, particularly when the auditory is opposed to the visual as a purer or more immediate form of sensual engagement or connection. Karin Bijsterveld (2004: 442) sums it up well in a supportive review of Sterne’s book: This litany assumes that a cultural analysis of sound cannot do without discerning the basic difference between the senses of hearing and vision, of which hearing is the likeliest candidate for moral superiority. Whereas vision is directional, and creates intellectual distance, superficiality, and atrophy, hearing is spherical and refers to affect, to the interior, and to physical contact with the living world. . . . Yet why, Sterne asks, would interpersonal interaction and bodily presence be of unspoken better quality than any other types of communication? Why would the increasing cultural attention to one sense mean the deterioration of the other – what underpins such a zero-sum approach?

Influential arguments that apply Sterne’s concept of the audiovisual litany have also surfaced in other regions of sound studies. Robin James (2018), for instance, is concerned that the prioritizing of sound is just another Eurocentric brand of thought that perpetuates the same cultural biases found in visual approaches.14 And Will Schrimshaw (2017) argues for a practice-based alliance between sound For further discussion, see: https​:/​/so​​undst​​udies​​blog.​​com​/2​​018​/0​​3​/05/​​look-​​away-​​and​-l​​isten​​-the-​​ audio​​visua​​l​-lit​​​any​-i​​n​-phi​​losop​​hy/



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art and the natural sciences which, rather than prioritizing the listening function, would emphasize the capacity of sound arts to translate data collected by the sciences (particularly natural sciences, such as astrophysics) into immersive artworks that bring our attention to what he calls the immanent–outside (or the ‘real’, as it exists beyond our sensory grasp).15 There can be no doubt that sound studies sits at a fascinating convergence in the academy, where the shores of convention and radicality overlap. For instance, while Sterne brings the forcefulness of academic convention to sound studies via his historical analysis of technology and society, he also champions the idea and practice of the sonic imagination, encouraging sound students (as he calls them) to embrace creative practices and non-academic production (Sterne 2012: 3). However, in keeping with his argument against the audiovisual litany, he has less tolerance for those studies that privilege the aural and, indeed, the oral. In a separate study, he connects the preferencing of the oral to a theological genealogy he discovers in communication studies (especially Walter Ong and Marshall McLuhan), stating, ‘we must construct new studies of early media and new ethnographies that do not posit the ascendency of the White, Christian West as the meaning of history’ (Sterne 2011: 222). He then connects this with the tendency of communication scholars, and presumably the sound study scholars that follow them, to reduce non-Western cultures into the romantic rendering of ‘oral man’, which, he says, ignores the diverse expressions of non-Western and pre-Western societies (Sterne 2011: 220). I agree with this point insofar as the privileging of the aural or oral can become a form of cultural colonization that risks essentializing the ‘other’ and creating distance between cultures, rather than establishing new openings for dialogue, experimentation and communication. However, it is also important to acknowledge that the privileging of the written word in modern society has real-world implications for Indigeneity. For instance, Australian Indigenous people’s ongoing struggle to have their relationship with the land acknowledged is exactly due to the fact that, historically, their knowledge was mainly passed down by word of mouth. Even if visual artefacts like archaeological objects, rock paintings and body paint helped disseminate these stories, as pointed out by Sterne (2011: 221), it does risk ignoring the fact that listening and oral traditions have been incredibly important as methods for knowledge-sharing across Indigeneity.16 This continues to be an See his Immanence and Immersion (2017). See Werner Herzog’s (1984) Where the Green Ants Dream for some powerful scenes expressing this very point.

15 16

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issue for Indigenous people in Australia, with sacred totems embedded in landscapes being destroyed simply because oral knowledge is not enough to shift jurisdictional authorities intent on clearing land for mining and transport infrastructure, including the 2020 destruction of the Juukan Gorge caves in Western Australia by Rio Tinto and the bulldozing of scarred trees in Victoria by VicRoads. Given these ongoing struggles I would argue that it is important to acknowledge the political implication of scholarship that foregrounds sound and listening, given that, in part at least, it aims to evoke real-world change. For instance, the telling of a story by an Indigenous elder of the significance of a particular place should be enough for jurisdictions to act ethically, with or without corresponding visual or textual evidence. I am sure that the authors I have just cited would agree with my point, but I do suggest that what they call a ‘litany’ might, in fact, be a necessary recalibration of sensory bias. For instance, oral accounts of history and culture, via mythological narratives, deserve to be treated with the same weight of importance as academic texts. A key problem with the term ‘mythology’, to return to that subject, is found in its everyday use, where it is often synonymous with non-truth (fact versus myth). This, in fact, is an implication of the linear evolutionary model that casts as ‘primitive’ any world view that precedes – or diverges from – the Enlightenment vision of science as the harbinger of reason. But this misses the point that so-called mythological expression may be the actualization of something real: namely, intensities and/or forces existing beyond sensory apprehension that are realized as archetypal images (such as Bunjil). The archetypal image is a manifestation of affect as presented during visions, dreams, ritualistic experiences or some other form of knowing – now largely lost to cultures fixated on systems of signs, but very real to cultures grounded in the territorialities of the earth and the experiences such relationships afford. Studies of mythologies and their consistencies as found across different cultural expressions were key to Jung’s discovery of the archetypes and the collective unconscious. Of course, such thinking is anathema for scientisms that refuse visions of reality that seem to lack empirical evidence; predictably, Jung’s archetypes have been dismissed and disparaged, and replaced with more obvious notions. For instance, the theory of diffusion posits that common myths and symbols spread internationally due simply to people’s migrations across the globe (McLynn 1997: 312). But this rather myopic theory works on the assumption that mythologies are simply signifiers that are exchanged between cultures, ignoring the possibility that the intensive real can give humans access to more-than-human forces, and

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that these more-than-human forces may emerge as different deities and totems across different cultural/geographical/social situations. Indeed, following Jung, this is the position taken by this book. As we shall see later, any criticism that an archetype is impossible to define is considered in this book to be a strength rather than a weakness. If it was easy to define, it would simply become another universal white theory explaining away Indigeneity.17 But this is not a universalizing theory; rather, archetypes are defined by their differentiation and mutability. In fact, in their differential manifestation as archetypal images, archetypes (or autonomous affectivities) can be considered trans-spatial and trans-temporal pre-personal flows, which always demonstrate an equivalence of difference across their multiple manifestations. As such, no differentiated archetypal image is greater than any other – their consistency (or equality) is the sum of the intensive force of their pre-manifested archetypal condition. This is important, as it assures that no cultural expression (or form) can be considered greater than any other; every expression emerges from the same ground of being, which manifests as respectful relationships between others. This is evident in the long-lasting relationships of disparate First Nations people, globally (which is not to say there weren’t skirmishes and tensions, only that the desire to obliterate was seemingly absent). Rather, it is the hierarchical dominions of colonialisms that are incapable of respecting the other; they can only crush the other. We now turn to a discussion of parallelism, the acausal principle of synchronicity and how it manifests as the right line of flight.

Psychophysical parallelism Introduction to the diagram To summarize the argument thus far: a line of flight is a release of energy, a deterritorializing flight that breaks through the plane of content, avoiding As did Marie Thompson (2017b) accuse Christoph Cox in her paper for Parallax. Thompson argued that Cox’s sonic materialism was a universalizing white theory that reduced different beliefs to a singular materialist vision steeped in a Eurocentric vision of the world. It is true that any attempt to create a universalizing theory can be considered colonial, insofar as it risks colonizing the original belief system of others and/or ignores the diversity of contemporary voices. I consider this charge carefully and propose that if, in fact, the source intensity is difference-in-itself then it is difficult to see how the charge of universalization can follow. In my opinion Cox does present his ideas of a sonic flux as pre-personal difference-in-itself, so charges of whiteness and universalization seem unfair. However, it is incumbent on the researcher to show respect and deference for other belief systems when promoting their own vision, and I can only hope I do that successfully enough in this book.


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Figure 2  Psychophysical parallelism and the human mode.



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the reductivity of systems of signs and discovering new relationships with the intensive real. We saw in the previous section that the left line of flight, unbound and fully realizing its potential, reterritorializes the body with rhizomatic entanglements. This might be realized as the entanglements of our own body with the desiring-body Earth (fieldwork, listening, interconnection), the arrangement of new temporary structures for nonhierarchical social organization (socio-artistic experimentation) or perhaps even the unification of creative practices into ritual ‘magic’ that momentarily bridges expressive-desires with the real (Indigeneity). In each of these cases there is a transformation of both social ecologies and the mental ecologies that constitute the social. These are revolutionary lines of flight insofar as they hope to transform social organization; we witness them all the time, during moments of mass-insurgencies, or even in smaller experimental settings that briefly avoid the suppressing gaze of faciality. Once tasted, it is hard to resubmit to the dictatorship of the signifier, as the desiring-flows of the intensive real present to the body the enriched possibilities of being, which are typically hidden in the plane of expression. However, it is incredibly difficult to sustain new forms of social organization, as the white wall of signification (faciality) is always watching and ready to stratify (capture) any insurgent irruptions of desire. Unless the entire world is to collectively take flight, the best that can be hoped for in this scenario is to follow the smooth–striated deter​ritor​ializ​ation​ –rete​rrito​riali​zatio​n rhythms mapped in Figures 1 and 1a. When we follow the diagram’s right vector, the line of flight leads to a different situation. We now come to a discussion of parallelism and how our relationship with autonomous affectivities (archetypal flows and essences) provides alternative methods for accessing and expressing the intensive real, without collapsing into the controlling significations (stratifications) of everyday life. As mentioned, a black hole hovers dangerously close to this line of flight. It is the inwardness of madness, paranoia and solitude. Living via one’s own system of signs that are completely self-referential is a type of solipsism that separates an individual from the social body – the danger of which is to no longer share a common language or understanding with others. This is what separates the left vector from the right vector. The former is always ecosophically oriented towards the environmental, social and individual, and the latter is a path of the individual (and, in the case of the artist, the singularity of their practice). To avoid the black hole of this line of flight, the traced path proposes embracing the acausal principle of synchronicity, which brings to awareness the

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flow of autonomous affectivities, located in between the body–mind parallel (see Figure 2). In particular, I am interested to present this line of flight as artistic practices encountering autonomous affectivities and manifesting them through creation via the oneness of experience.18 Fully realized, this line of flight ceases to be individualistic when its creations (i.e. artworks) are able to provide the social body with access to transformative experiences. Thus, the right line of flight avoids the black hole through its desire to transform the social body (with which the artist maintains connection) rather than only its-self (solipsism). To understand how this line of flight eventually terminates in the territorialities of the inner world, a philosophically informed discussion of parallelism is required, which requires scholarship exploring commonalities across Jung, Spinoza and Deleuze, to which we now turn.

Descartes and Spinoza Spinoza famously challenges the world view of Descartes, who had split the mind (thinking) and body (extension) into two separate substances. Descartes postulated that the mind exists inside our pituitary gland, which itself drives the eye and its observations of the external world. The body is, seemingly, a lifeless object, or perhaps an automaton, which is animated by the mind. For Descartes, that the mind enables us to think is the very explanation for our existence (the cogito). As such, he attempts to make the mind a thing located in the centre of our brain, which enables us to apprehend the world. The world, which exists external to the observer, is subject to analysis, categorization and representation by our mind. The eyes can be pictured as a scanning device, computing a cold, dead world – with only the mind’s capacities able to bring it to life (via knowledge). In his Ethics, Spinoza challenges Descartes’s position by determining the mind and body as independent attributes, which are composed of a single substance (God/Nature). The mind is associated with reason, or the ‘common notion of things’ (which I align to the plane of content in Figures 1 and 1d), and the body is associated with affect or the ‘affects of external bodies’ (which I align with the plane of expression in Figures 1 and 1d). Before I discuss mind–body parallelism, a brief description of Spinoza’s metaphysics is required, which I

T h e concept of ‘oneness of experience’ is central to the synchronicity arguments presented in this book. The meaning of the term will be considered in detail in Part 2.



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present in reference to both Spinoza’s Ethics and Deleuze’s Expressionism and Spinoza.

Substance, attributes and modes It is recommended that the reader carefully study Figure 2 before continuing, which will help in understanding the following definitions. Spinoza describes a substance that is univocal and without cause. It is immanent to everything, always; that is, it is not a transcendent realm that humans measure themselves or their ideas against, but that from which everything is composed, and that which is immanent to everything that exists (it is this substance that Deleuze reworks into his plane of immanence). This substance, which Spinoza also calls Nature and/or God, comprises an infinity of ‘attributes’, and two of these attributes are Mind and Body.19 Importantly, each attribute comprises its own series of events that are independent of each other (more on this later). Modes, which are bodies (including human bodies), exist simultaneously across the Mind and Body attributes. Spinoza defines modes as durational (non-infinite) expressions that are finite affectations of immanence. So, each human is a mode, which is the simultaneous expression of the Mind and Body attributes. It is curious to think of the mind as being parallel to the body (as we discussed, Descartes located the mind in the pineal gland) as it raises the question – What is the connective relationship between the two? As the Deleuzian philosopher Christian Kerslake (2007: 151) explains, ‘there is something mind-boggling in this parallelism, as formally it suggests that there are a plurality of attributes, all without direct causal relation to each other but all expressing the same substance.’ It is Deleuze – who was influenced by Spinoza more than by any other philosopher (152) – who uses the term ‘parallelism’ to explain the relationship between the Mind and Body attributes, as expressed through the modes. In Expressionism in Philosophy: Spinoza (1992: 110) he writes: ‘Parallelism characterizes modes, and modes alone. But it is grounded in substance and the attributes of substance.’ That is, a mode is the simultaneous expression of two independent and parallel attributes, with no formal causal link, but sharing the same substance. And it is here, according to Kerslake, that Jung’s acausal synchronicity provides a possible answer. He writes, ‘in our pursuit of reference to make sense of Deleuze’s claim that there is a differential T h ere is discussion among scholars that Spinoza’s infinity may, in fact, refer to only two attributes, meaning that only the attributes of mind (thought) and body (extension) exist, rather than an actual infinity of attributes (Kerslake 2007: 151).


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unconscious in the work of Jung, all the evidence is pointing us to the phenomena that Jung classed under the term “synchronicity”’ (2007: 141). We will return to synchronicity, and the differential unconscious, in a moment.

From essence to archetype Spinoza (via Deleuze) explains that substance expresses essence, and that essences are expressed through the attributes and modes. Deleuze (1992: 330) writes, ‘An attribute is no longer understood merely as a common property of all the existing modes corresponding to it, but as what constitutes the singular essence of divine substance, and as what contains all the particular essences of its modes.’ Note here that essences are expressed through both attributes and the modes: as a singular essence expressed through the attributes, and as multiplicities of essences expressed through the modes. Thus, essence can be thought of as a vital force that enables substance to express itself through the attributes, and as a diversity of essences that manifests uniquely through each of the modes. Even though essences are unique to each mode, their source is common. As Deleuze (310) describes, ‘each essence comprises all other essences in the law of its production.’ As I will soon argue, this is what makes essences similar to archetypes; in short, archetypes are expressions of a singular, transversal collective unconscious and archetypal images are its unique expressions via the dreams and visions of humans. Substance, its essence and the attributes, is trans-spatial and trans-temporal. Here, we are dealing with metaphysics; its existence is therefore speculative, pre-personal, existing beyond the reach of the senses. However, the modes (including us) are real, durational expressions of immanence, which are in the world according to the bounding conditions of their sensory reach. As such, as modes, we can know that which lies beyond sensory apprehension only through its manifested affects (dreams, visions, intuitive insights, etc.) and not as part of the world as we typically know it. It is here that we can now turn to Jung. As indicated already, it is my position that his archetypes have resonance with Deleuze’s description of Spinoza’s essences; the archetypes constitute a differential unconscious expressed uniquely across individual human psyches, just as essences constitute a differential substance expressed uniquely across individual modes. As pictured in Figure 2, autonomous affectivities (qua essences and archetypes) flow through the in-between of the parallel attributes of Mind and Body. When these flows are apprehended intuitively, our attention is momentarily brought to the synchronistic mind–body relationship (more on that later).


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Before continuing with what is admittedly an ambitious claim (that archetypes and essences are synonymous), it is worth noting that several scholars have made the connection between Deleuze and Guattari, and Jung’s thought. The following quote by Grant Maxwell (2019: para 5) is instructive: Deleuze and Guattari explore most of the same uncharted domains as Jung, though their writing is so difficult and complex that only those who are paying very close attention, and in many cases who are already familiar with Jungian thought, will discern the deep resonances between these thinkers. One suspects that this was a subtle and purposive strategy by Deleuze and Guattari, which has been extraordinarily efficacious in allowing their work to occupy a central place in continental thought, while also allowing them to engage with relatively marginal Jungian concepts, winking at the Jungian cognoscenti while generally escaping the notice of those within academia who unquestioningly accept the overly hasty dismissal of Jung’s work largely instigated by Freud.

Additionally, Jungian scholar Christian McMillan (2018: 189) sheds some light on what these resonances might be. He uses the term ‘enchanted encounter’ to describe the connection between Deleuze and Jung’s intentions, arguing that Deleuze was a thinker of enchantment who was deeply influenced by Jung, both of whom were invested in the idea of encounters that force us to think. He explains that ‘enchantment concerns a rich source of possibilities and openings for experimental transformations, beyond the subject and beyond the “human”’. Additionally, Christian Kerslake (2007: 81–6) proposes that both Jung and Deleuze are connected by their interests in individuation: a process by which the self, as it absorbs the problems and challenges of the unconscious, comes to integrate with the unconscious. He discusses the unconscious as familiar to both psychotherapy (Jung) and philosophy (Deleuze), arguing that there is a strong resonance between their writings on the matter of individuation. I won’t go further into individuation here, although it is of central importance to both thinkers. Instead, I use it to reiterate the point that the overlap between these two thinkers is certainly apparent, and also to aid my argument that there are consistencies in the differential nature of the archetypes and essences. It is the integration of both (archetypes for Jung; essences for Deleuze) which supports the individuation process, which, as McMillan suggests, can be thought of as a process of enchantment, whereby the body comes to know, and integrate, more-than-human-forces. So, just as archetypes form the differentials of the collective unconscious, so do essences form the differentials of substance/the plane of immanence.

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Parallelism and continuous variation As pictured in Figure 2, mind and body attributes exist in parallel, with the human mode corresponding to both attributes.20 So, how to explain this psychophysical correspondence between the parallel attributes of body and mind? Although Descartes’s proposition is criticized by Spinoza (and now it seems, by almost everyone), he did provide a comprehensible answer, insofar as the mind could be imagined as physically contained in the body. But with Spinoza (via Deleuze) we inhabit an entirely different world, whereby both mind and body contain their own independent series of events. The body has its own ‘thoughts’ experienced as bodily affects, and the mind’s thoughts are expressed as common notions. Deleuze (1978: para. 8) provides a refreshingly clear explanation of this in a lecture to his students: ‘idea and affect are two kinds of modes of thought which differ in nature, which are irreducible to one another but simply taken up in a relation such that affect presupposes an idea, however confused it may be.’ In this description, as I understand it, an affect is an idea of the body, which is not an idea as we commonly understand it. Typically, we think of ideas in relation to reason, by which the mind produces and shares axioms, categories and representations (common notions). The ‘ideas of the body’ are what we might commonly think of as an unfolding series of registered emotional reactions (or what Spinoza called imagination). So, the emotional surge caused by our interaction with other bodies comprises the thoughts of our body – it’s hot/I’m hungry/it’s noisy/I don’t like him, and so on – which are separate to the thoughts of the mind, which presents other processes (such as reasoned discussion, or conscious decision-making). It is their parallel dynamic that is of interest. It is worth, just for a moment, considering Deleuze’s discussion of continuous variation in ‘Chapter 3: The Image of Thought’ in Difference and Repetition for the insights it can give us into modal duration. Deleuze (1994: 182) positions representation as an image of thought, which, while serving well certain functions of reason, does not explain difference-in-itself or continuous variation. Continuous variation is caused by the forces of existence constantly varying our experiences of, and responses to, the world. As he writes, ‘difference becomes an object of representation always in relation to a conceived identity, a judged analogy, an imagined opposition or a perceived similitude . . . . For this reason, Deleuze (1992: 107) reminds us that parallelism is not an idea derived by Spinoza, but by Leibniz; however, Deleuze applies it to Spinoza, and it is central to the argument presented here.



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the world of representation is characterised by its inability to conceive of difference in itself.’ Difference-in-itself, he writes, is experienced by the body beneath the level of perception: this element is intensity, understood as pure difference in itself as that which is at once both imperceptible for empirical sensibility which grasps intensity only already covered or mediated by the quality to which it gives rise, and at the same time that which can be perceived only from the point of view of a transcendental21 sensibility which apprehends it immediately in the encounter. (189)

Semetsky and Delpech-Ramey (2012: 73) present an example to illustrate this: they write that we can’t learn to swim by looking at representative images in a book, or by a teacher’s demonstration. We learn via the differential changes – or continuous variations – of our bodies ‘conjunction with a wave: a body and wave’. So, that which is represented is a fixed image of thought that can be categorized and objectified. Each representation is a frozen concept that endlessly repeats itself (e.g. as an image); difference-in-itself, however, occurs below the threshold of sensibility, as a constant state of felt variations – it is the flow of ever-changing events that constitute the experiences of the body and the thoughts that arise from it. In the aforementioned lecture, Deleuze (1978: para. 15) states that ‘I would say that for Spinoza there is a continuous variation – and this is what it means to exist – of the force of existing or of the power of acting’ and that ‘our ideas succeed each other constantly’. Therefore, continuous variation is true of both the ideas of the Mind and the ideas of the Body. He continues: the idea and the affect are two things which differ in nature, the affect is not reducible to an intellectual comparison of ideas, affect is constituted by the lived transition or lived passage from one degree of perfection to another, insofar as this passage is determined by ideas; but in itself it does not consist in an idea, but rather constitutes an affect. (para 17)

I understand this as the affected body continuously manifesting ideas of the world – that is, how we feel about the world. So, we can understand the Mind and the Body as two parallel attributes expressed as a heterogeneous series of continuous Deleuze’s use of the term ‘transcendent’ causes a lot of confusion, given he is the philosopher of immanence. As he explains, ‘Transcendent in no way means that the faculty addresses itself to objects outside the world but, on the contrary, that it grasps that in the world which concerns it exclusively and brings it into the world’ (1994: 188). In this case he is referring to that which has been manifested, and which has therefore been brought to perception.


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variation, which, together, constitute modal duration (including the duration of our life). As written into Figure 2, it is the mind’s apprehension of the eternal essence of the body (and therefore its own eternal essence), which marks moments of synchronicity. As will be discussed later, synchronicity is an acausal – and therefore intuitive – apprehension, which coincides with the emergence of an autonomous affectivity; that which is felt. It is autonomous affectivities (archetypes/essences) which form the structure of the differential unconscious, to which we now turn.

The differential unconscious We are now ready to explore more deeply the relationship of Deleuze’s idea of the differential unconscious with Jung’s archetypes. There are two mentions of archetypes in Deleuze’s Difference and Repetition, which Kerslake (2007) brings to light in his scholarship. Rather than risking repetition of Kerslake’s work, I will provide my own interpretation of these references, in relationship to Jung’s own definitions of the archetypes; however, I am indebted to Kerslake’s study for helping me to identify these two quotes from which I build my own position. First, Deleuze (1994: 134) directly discuses archetypes in relation to the collective unconscious and solipsism. He writes: Nor do I believe that the Freudian discovery of phylogenesis or the Jungian discovery of archetypes can correct the weaknesses of such a conception. Even if the rights of the imaginary as a whole are opposed to the facts of reality, it remains a question of ‘psychic’ reality considered to be ultimate or original; even if we oppose spirit and matter, it remains a question of a bare, uncovered spirit resting upon its own identity and supported by its derived analogies; even if we oppose a collective or cosmic unconscious to the individual unconscious, the former can act only through its power to inspire representations in a solipsistic subject, whether this be the subject of a culture or a world.

In this passage, Deleuze is discussing the problem of repetition and its subordination to representation. I would argue that his concern is with the archetypal image – that is, an archetype as it emerges in a dream, vision or myth (for instance) rather than actual archetypes, which are, in themselves, like essences – pre-personal, intensive powers. Archetypal images may appear to be representational, because particular manifestations become fixed – and therefore repeating – figures within a therapeutic context (for instance, the dream-image of the anima/animus or the self/shadow). The repetition of certain images is,


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in fact, a result of Jung’s discovery that archetypes can manifest as the same (or at least similar) images across multiple dreaming subjects, mythological symbology and the themes and characters found in fairy tales. As such, the charge of solipsism seems unfair, given that these archetypal images have been found to exist/manifest across multiple dreaming bodies. The problem here is that Deleuze has opposed a collective unconscious to an individual unconscious when, in fact, the collective unconscious is a transversal base that presents archetypes to the personal unconscious in myriad ways. Jung states this clearly when he describes the collective unconscious as a ‘common psychic substrate’.22 Importantly, though, Deleuze says that Jung discovered the archetypes, not that he invented them or conceptualized them. Therefore, it seems fair to presume that Deleuze thought they were real enough. What Deleuze seems to be inferring is that archetypal images can’t be considered as difference-in-itself, especially if they are expressed or applied by the individual who uses them to construct their own solipsistic vision of the psyche. So, if Deleuze believed the archetypes existed (given they were discovered), then what were they? He makes one more mention of Jung in a footnote, but in this instance ‘differentiation’ is the term used, not ‘archetypal’. He writes: Was not one of the most important points of Jung’s theory already to be found here: the force of ‘questioning’ in the unconscious, the conception of the unconscious as an unconscious of ‘problems’ and ‘tasks’? Drawing out the consequences of this led Jung to the discovery of a process of differentiation more profound than the resulting opposites. (1994: 167)

It seems that it is the archetypal image that Deleuze takes issue with and not the archetype. Archetypes differentiate the collective unconscious, and present to the personal unconscious and consciousness as problems (especially via dream images) that require resolution. The monist whole of the collective unconscious is differentiated as a multiplicity of archetypes; which manifest as archetypalimages in our personal unconscious and conscious selves. That it should express itself in the ways that Jung describes as various types of dream archetypes ‘A more or less superficial layer of the unconscious is undoubtedly personal. I call it the personal unconscious. But this personal unconscious rests upon a deeper layer, which does not derive from personal experience and is not a personal acquisition but is inborn. This deeper layer I call the collective unconscious. I have chosen the term “collective” because this part of the unconscious is not individual but universal; in contrast to the personal psyche, it has contents and modes of behaviour that are more or less the same everywhere and in all individuals. It is, in other words, identical in all men and thus constitutes a common psychic substrate of a suprapersonal nature which is present in everyone of us’ (Jung [1954] 1968: 3).


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(anima/animus, shadow/self, light/dark, etc., to which Deleuze is likely referring in the aforementioned quote as ‘resulting opposites’) is clearly of little interest to Deleuze. However, Deleuze was a philosopher and not an analyst. Jung helped people process their dreams, as part of their own (and his) process of personal and spiritual transformation. Deleuze, an atheist, seems to have applied Jung’s differential unconscious (as suggested by Kerslake and others), but also distances himself from the symbolic implications (or what he calls the ‘resulting opposites’) of Jung’s work that were derived from his work as a dream analyst.23 So, perhaps it is safe to say that Deleuze departs from Jung at the point Jung ascribes images to the intensive archetypal forces of the differentiated collective unconscious. In his book Synchronicity: An Acausal Connecting Principle ([1952] 1973: 20), Jung writes that archetypes ‘constitute the structure of the collective unconscious [and] are formal factors responsible for the organization of unconscious psychic processes: they are “patterns of behaviour”. At the same time, they have a “specific charge” and develop numinous effects which express themselves as affects.’ This quote should help us recognize that the archetypes, in their pre-manifested expression, are similar to the essences. Just as the expressive singular essence of Spinoza’s substance is differentiated in modes and attributes, so too does the archetypal structure of the collective unconscious differentiate across individuals and societies as diverse archetypal images. Both the substance and the collective unconscious are monist, transversal fields of intensity, which, as difference-in-itself, manifests for Spinoza as essences and for Jung as archetypes. However, as a means to collapse together the rather nebulous definitions of essence, and the pre-image intensity of the archetype, I apply the term ‘autonomous affectivities’ to describe those mysterious more-than-human forces that can come to affect us. (In this book, I am mainly interested in their artistic manifestation). In their undifferentiated state, autonomous affectivities move across the plane of immanence (at infinite speeds, in keeping with their transversal nature); however, they can manifest (differentiate) within modes as the creation of something, whether it be a dream, artwork or gesture. In using the term ‘autonomous affectivity’, I don’t want to lose T h is not to say that one cannot find quotes from Jung that sound more Deleuzian (abstract and philosophical) than therapeutic. For instance, ‘The effective (numinous) agents in the unconscious are the archetypes. . . . This, in itself, is an irrepresentable, psychoid factor of the collective unconscious. . . . You can never say with certainty whether what appears to be going on in the collective unconscious of a single individual is not also happening in other individuals or organisms’ ([1952] 1973: 65). This quote, I think challenges Deleuze’s charge of solipsism given the transversal nature of archetypes.



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any of the creative ingenuity of Jung’s archetypal images; rather, I accept they are part of the therapeutic treatment, and even of spiritual transformation, as imbued in the processes of individuation undertaken by his analysands. But equally, I don’t want to lose the ethico-aesthetic project of Deleuze, in which he provides the opportunity to consider the essences in relationship to the augmentation and diminishment of joy; he says joyfulness increases when we integrate the differential unconscious via intuitive knowledge (discussed later). In my definition, autonomous affectivities can manifest as anything, affecting creative irruptions of boundless possibility. It is this that makes it useful for conceptualizing and practising artistic research. In a moment, I will turn to Spinoza’s three types of knowledge and their relationship to synchronicity, with a specific focus on the inseparable relationship of intuition with autonomous affectivities. Before this, I will make a final comment concerning Deleuze’s comment about Jung and the unconscious, quoted earlier. Deleuze expresses his concern that the collective unconscious was built on a notion of the psyche as being separate to matter, and that the collective unconscious could be known in its representations only as inspired via the solipsistic subject. It is true that Jung was primarily focused on the psyche, or mind, in his work; he does not often speak directly of the body. However, a recognition of the body is always implied in his discussions of synchronicity, for synchronous experiences require both the body and the mind for their emergence (see Figure 2). Jung’s focus on the psyche should be understood as being a product of his role as a dream analyst. As such, he is mainly concerned about the symbolic referent of dreams via the collective unconscious, and how the appearance of the archetypal image (as distinct from the archetype) is able to produce transformative therapeutic outcomes for his patients, as they work towards individuation. However, in regard to synchronicity, both the mind and the body are integrally entwined and active. Jung ([1944] 1974: 220) brings this to our attention: the principle of the unconscious is the autonomy of the psyche itself, even though it utilizes the illustrative possibilities offered by the sensible world in order to make its images clear. The sensory datum, however, is not the causa efficiens [efficient cause] of this; rather, it is autonomously selected and exploited by the psyche, with the result that the rationality of the cosmos is constantly being violated in the most distressing manner. But the sensible world has an equally devastating effect on the deeper psychic processes when it breaks into them as a causa efficiens.

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Clearly, it is as much the psyche acting on the material world, as it is the material world acting on the psyche, when synchronous moments appear. Thus, body and mind are not presented here as opposites, but, rather, as each co-producing the other in ways that are ‘devastating’ for our rational understanding of the world. And it is for this reason, as discussed by Langan and others (see p.78–9), that it may be fair to say that Jung incorrectly devalued the importance of Spinoza, in his own articulations of synchronicity. Both thinkers (Jung, and Spinoza via Deleuze) struggled with the idea and experience of psychophysical parallelism and the acausal relationship they presented. Psyche and matter are not opposites, but parallel emergences from a singular ground of being, which itself can be grasped only during the intuitive experience of synchronicity.

Intuition – the third intelligence Before moving to our final discussion of synchronicity, a consideration of Spinoza’s ‘Intuition’ is required. In Figure 2, three types of intelligence proposed by Spinoza are listed. I’ll let Deleuze (1992: 303) explain, before proceeding with Spinoza’s explanations as I have written them into Figure 2: The first kind of knowledge has as its object only encounters between parts of bodies, seen in terms of their extrinsic determinations. The second kind rises to the composition of characteristic relations. But the third kind alone relates to eternal essences: the knowledge of God’s essence, of particular essences as they are in God, and as conceived by God . . . . Now essences have various characteristics. They are in the first place particular essences, and so irreducible one to another: each is a real being, a res physica, a degree of power or intensity.

This definition is critical to our understanding of synchronicity and autonomous affectivities. But first, let’s consider their relation to Spinoza’s definitions in Ethics as diagrammed in Figure 2. Spinoza calls the first type of knowledge imagination, which is the ‘recollections based on affects of external bodies’ (Spinoza [1677] 2009: II, P40, S2); the second reason, which is the ‘common notions of the property of things’ (II, P40, S2); and the third intuition, which ‘reveals an eternal and infinite essence’ (II, P40, S4; V, P35). Using the term ‘imagination’ to describe the first type of knowledge seems misleading for our purposes (not that I am in a position to explain why Spinoza used this term) given that, in the present age at least, common applications of the term ‘imagination’ are more likely to relate to the conjuring of the new – whether in ideas or artworks or other types


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of creation. Perhaps using ‘feeling’ or even ‘emotion’ would today more clearly describe affective encounters between bodies, before (and if) they become the thoughts of the body? The second type of knowledge remains consistent with our understanding of reason, which is the capacity to build shared concepts based on the repetition of common characteristics and familiar relations between events. We turn now to the third type of knowledge, intuition. Intuition is connected closely to essences by both Spinoza and Deleuze. For Spinoza, intuition, by going beyond the second type of intelligence, allows us to momentarily experience the expressive essence of substance, or God, as it experiences it itself. This is associated with joy. Deleuze’s (1992: 311) atheist project somewhat stops here. He writes, ‘All that we can strive toward is to have proportionately more joyful passions than sad ones, more active joys of the second kind than passions, and the greatest possible number of joys of the third kind.’ However, by figuring the essences as archetypes, we enter into new possible ways of understanding the essences. Deleuze writes in the previous quote that essences are ‘real beings’ (as ‘a degree of power or intensity’) that are irreducible to one another, which shows that essences are both singular and multiplicities. Certainly, Jung ([1954] 1968: 43) describes archetypes similarly. For instance, in a definition of the collective unconscious and the archetypes, he writes: In addition to our immediate consciousness, which is of a thoroughly personal nature and which we believe to be the only empirical psyche (even if we tack on the personal unconscious as an appendix), there exists a second psychic system of a collective, universal and impersonal nature which is identical in all individuals. This collective unconscious does not develop individually but is inherited. It consists of pre-existent forms, the archetypes, which can only become conscious secondarily and which give definite form to certain physic contents.

As discussed, it’s important to remember that Jung, above all, was a clinician practising psychotherapy, and not a philosopher (though he was certainly philosophical). The roots of his ideas take shape in his discovery – and, indeed, his experience – that universal archetypes act across bodies as pre-personal patterns of instincts that shape human behaviour, and that the therapist is able to help the patient become aware of how these instincts are affecting their conscious life, and, indeed, that might act as signposts in a process of personal and spiritual transformation. So, keeping that caveat in mind, we can now see across Jung’s and Deleuze’s definitions that both archetypes and essences

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constitute a transversal plane (Jung’s collective unconscious; Deleuze’s plane of immanence), are eternal (Jung’s heritable ‘substrate of the suprapersonal’; Deleuze’s non-duration), and are differentiated entities that affect bodies (Jung’s instinctual forms; Deleuze’s res physica (physical reality)). Finally, in each case, they both exist below the threshold of consciousness and can be felt only as affects. In fact, we require intuition – the third type of intelligence that exists across both attributes – to apprehend the intensive charge of essences and archetypes. As diagrammed in Figure 2, in keeping with Deleuze’s Spinoza, intuition is the mind becoming aware of the eternal essence of the body. Therefore, the mind requires the body to intuitively perceive essences. Via Jung, we know that the psyche experiences archetypal charges during sleep (manifesting as dreams); however, while awake, an archetypal charge will always be accompanied by a real-world event. Combining these insights, we can say that intuition brings to our awareness the existence of autonomous affectivities, producing heightened, even magical, experiences – magical insofar as the durational mode experiences the non-durational qualities of the eternal. This presents the intriguing notion of what it would mean to be always fully conscious of the intuitive flows of essences/archetypes. Could it be that minds as profound as Spinoza, Jung and Deleuze were able to directly access these experiential flows? Is this what they were referring to when speaking of the process of individuation (self-becoming)? Did they suspect that reason was not enough to access the truth of things, and that by hovering closely to mysticism, the intuitive might open their awareness to the eternal? As Deleuze (1992: 305) writes, ‘so long as we remain with the second kind of knowledge, our adequate ideas still do not include one of ourselves, our essence, the essence of our body.’ When the self apprehends the eternal, it is fully opened to the trans-spatiality and trans-temporality of the unconscious. As discussed, Kerslake (2007: 3) states that this process was important for both Jung and Deleuze, who argued that ‘the task of the human being [is] to pass through the unconscious in order to assume full consciousness’. This brings us to a key insight provided by this book: the intuitive apprehension of synchronicity enables us to feel the intensive force of autonomous affectivities, the power of which can manifest through artistic creativity.

Synchronicity As the right line of flight finally dissolves into the inner world, we arrive at the acausal phenomenon of synchronicity. Jung ([1952] 1973: 31) defines


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synchronicity as comprising two factors: ‘(a) An unconscious image comes into consciousness either directly (i.e., literally) or indirectly (symbolized or suggested) in the form of a dream, idea or premonition. (b) An objective situation coincides with this content. The one is as puzzling as the other. How does the unconscious image arise, and how the coincidence?’ An experience of synchronicity is deeply personal and so it is difficult, if not impossible, to translate this experience to another person, even if they are amenable to such a possibility. Certainly, it is easy to dismiss the possibility of such experiences given that they are not able to be verified in any objective way (though Jung certainly tries to do this in collaboration with the Nobel Prize-winning physicist Wolfgang Pauli, in his book Synchronicity: An Acausal Connecting Principle). According to Kerslake (2007), Freud reduced synchronicity to feelings of the ‘uncanny’, which he largely dismissed as ‘a return to primary narcissism [which] is ultimately what should have remained hidden’ (145). It seems that Freud did not explore the matter any further. But, as Kerslake explains, acausal synchronicity provides a possible answer (especially via Deleuze) to the philosophical problem of psychophysical parallelism (143). Jung ([1952] 1973: 90) himself claims as much: ‘The synchronicity principle possesses properties that may help to clear up the body–soul problem. Above all, it is the fact of causeless order, or rather, of meaningful orderedness, that may throw light on psychophysical parallelism.’24 So, beyond being a personal experience that can help with a patient’s selftransformation, synchronicity may provide an answer for understanding the relationship between mind and body. Let’s return for a moment to the parallel series of continuous variations that define the duration of a mode, and the claim that Jung neglected the body. Here we will find a point of departure between Jung and Spinoza, which we will turn to our advantage. Like Deleuze earlier, both Kerslake and Langan point out that Jung privileged the psyche, or the mind, over the body. The archetypes of the collective unconscious reveal themselves to the personal psyche in dreams, visions and premonitions, in which the body seems to play no part. Langan (2019: 113) writes, ‘Jung may share Spinoza’s dual-aspect parallelism, but he also places a premium It has been pointed out by the scholar Robert Langan that despite the synergy between Jung and Spinoza’s thinking, Jung was critical of Spinoza. However, as Langan (2019: 112) writes, this may be due to a misconception: ‘Jung criticized Spinoza for diminishing the metaphysical value of the archetype, but only because he seemingly assumed that Spinoza’s definition of an idea applied merely to rote human cognition. Instead, Spinoza presaged the concept that Jung ultimately arrives at: the collective unconscious as the mental aspect of a monist whole.’ Similarly, I take the position that by decoupling mind and body, Spinoza’s parallelism gives new meaning to the concept of synchronicity.


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on the psyche in his model, a premium that Spinoza’s realism would likely reject.’ Similarly, Kerslake (2007: 143) writes that for Spinoza, ‘what one is thinking about parallels one’s bodily state. Jung never says this, and his examples show that he is concerned with subjective series which are more or less divergent from objective series.’ However, while this may be true insofar as the archetypes are positioned as psychic phenomena, Jung ([1952] 1973: 65) makes it clear that a synchronistic experience requires an idea of the mind to be simultaneously experienced as some type of bodily affect. Therefore, it is impossible to experience synchronicity without the body being affected. As Jung describes, synchronicity requires an unconscious image and an objective situation, the objective situation being a real-world event encountered by the body. What is important here is to note that synchronicity can occur in our waking life – in an everyday context (this is not to say that synchronicity isn’t also related to the phenomenon of dreams – as I recount in the Preface – only that here we are concerned with its connection with the body in the context of everyday experience). Jung may not have foregrounded the body as much as he did the psyche, but he certainly didn’t disregard it. Kerslake doesn’t define what he means by ‘divergence’; rather, I have diagrammatically interpreted its meaning into Figure 2. This divergence is mapped as an arrow traced from body to mind. The arrow’s movement intends to preserve the independence of the two attributes, as this movement occurs at infinite speed causing instantaneous emergence transversally across both attributes. It traces a path of ‘when a feeling coincides with an idea’. This mapping shows that when an affect (first knowledge) and idea (second knowledge) occur simultaneously, intuitive knowledge (third knowledge) emerges, which is coincident with synchronicity experiences. Note that along the vector we find the term ‘ambiance’, and that this term is located within the field (sensory reach) of the mode. As will be discussed in detail in Part 2 the term ‘ambiance’ is closely related to the ways in which the sensual body perceives the world: this I consider to be synonymous with the ‘objective situation’ to which Jung refers in his quote earlier. The synchronistic experience is striking to us because it is accompanied by the intensive charge of an autonomous affectivity (archetype, essence) which is typically beyond apprehension. In this moment, the mind is not able to establish any common notion or contextualize the experience within an existing system of signs (thus the mental anomaly) while at the same time (as explained by Deleuze, earlier) the mind perceives the eternal essence of the body. As durational beings it is impossible for us to understand eternity, as we are defined by our temporal unfolding; however, we might speculate that


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everything exists simultaneously in essence, as there is no duration to extend, or separate, events. During an experience of synchronicity our mind glimpses the eternal: all in a moment, events we would typically consider to be separate reveal their underlying interconnectedness. The mode is capable of glimpsing the eternal only as a meaningful coincidence of two seemingly separated events (synchronicity), but the eternal, which is timeless (qua non-durational) by definition, is where all events must always occur simultaneously. This charge of the eternal – in all its mystery – is an unlimited source of creative potential, and the autonomous affectivities that accompany it, can manifest in multiple forms. For an artistic researcher such as myself, I embrace the mystery and indefinite ‘figure’ of the synchronistic, because it is precisely such a figure that we need to understand the infinite manifestations of artistic output. Synchronicity is a-signifying insofar as it cannot be represented or captured into a system of signs. Indeed, it is defined by a oneness of experience that cannot be repeated. Artistic researchers are adept at manifesting oneness of experience; this is what makes their work distinct. As a line of flight, synchronistic experience unfolds in direct relationship to the idiosyncrasies of the artist; by defying representation, categorization and signification, they conjure new meanings. By coagulating a surge of power into an object or event, it is possible that the artist may not consciously apprehend an experience of synchronicity. To experience synchronicity, its surge of power must be apprehended by the unoccupied mind (which is then free to become aware of the body’s eternal essence); however, during acts of artistic creation both the body and the mind are fully immersed in processes of making (however that process might manifest for the artist in question). In these moments, rather than the occurrence of a consciously apprehended synchronistic experience, what occurs, instead, is a synchronistic becoming – that is, a unique manifestation of artistic creativity emerges. The intensity of the force of becoming remains the same, but rather than manifesting as intuitive knowledge, the surge of power, instead, flows through the coordinated action of mind and body. The resulting artistic creation becomes talismanic, insofar as it can open passageways towards vitalities typically beyond our apprehension. This is one explanation for why art can seem so mysterious, unsettling and powerful. It is the intensive charge delivered by the autonomous affectivity that so affects the artist and, later, audiences, who encounter the talismanic effect of the work. As a concept, what is particularly powerful about synchronicity is that it removes any notion of a transcendent realm to which we should aspire;

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rather, all possible power is immanent and always accessible. This removes the romantic notion of an artist drawing their talent from a higher power that the rest of us do not have access to; rather, via their craft (vis-a-vis creative practice), the artist comes to ever more skilfully and effectively draw the intensive flows of autonomous affectivities into their creations. Therefore, according to this argument, synchronicity is not only a uniquely acausal phenomenon that opens perception to the eternal, but also a coordinated mind–body flow directing pre-personal intensities into the objects and events (qua singularities) of creation. Finally, synchronicity can be understood as a rupturing encounter that makes possible the ‘magical’ experience. I mean magic in the sense of Guattari’s speculations that Indigeneity is able to amplify the affective power of the intensive real through ritual. The desiring-body Earth, so accessed, produces an overflow of desire, enabling our bodies to become-other (animal/spirit/myth), revealing new ways of being and perceiving. Indeed, Jung ([1952] 1973: 33) himself makes the connection between synchronicity and magic, stating that ‘synchronistic (“magical”) happenings are regarded as being dependent on affects’ – that is, the manifestation of archetypal affects. Synchronicity has been described as the ‘rupture of time’ by the theological scholar Tjeu van den Berk (2012: 133) in his book Jung on Art. He writes that ‘during a synchronistic experience time stands still, space dissolves, and during an “eternal moment” one is free from the chain of cause and effect’. This link of synchronicity with time and art is important: we (modes), who are defined by our duration, are provided a glimpse of the eternal when our sense of time is ruptured. A rupture cuts through, allowing desire to spill over and forge new connections in the present moment. The magic, as such, is the transformation that occurs – the desiring body suddenly inhabits a new Universe of Value. To return to a central theme of this book, could there be a more profound goal for an urban sound artist, particularly those who desire to intervene in city environments, than the sustained effort to enchant and transform our cities? To dissolve systems of signs, if only for a moment, and amplify the intensive real through the bodies of city inhabitants? My book Sonic Rupture articulated such an ambition. Its desire was to rupture the homogenous soundscapes of the urban into heterogeneous environments, whereby the human body might encounter new experiences in the unbounded flows of desire catalysed by creative action. I presented the idea of magic in my final chapter Dreamings (a respectful gesture to the Dreaming myths and rituals of Aboriginal Australians) to map the project of urban sound art into a broader context of rediscovering Indigeneity


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in the everyday. To discover Indigeneity is not intended to be a return-to-earth ideal, or an act of cultural appropriation, but an invitation for us to be aware of the possibilities that might emerge when other territorialities and Universes of Value appear during acts of creative becoming. Sonic ruptures are sites for the creation of such possibilities, and sound, as has been discussed, is particularly suited to discussions of affective becomings and bodily transformations. The right lines of flight are those synchronistic becomings by which our intuitive flows of mind– body activation access autonomous affectivities in the act of creation. They are able to cut across controlling systems of signs by opening our intuition to those intensities typically concealed by everyday life. As such, the urban artist becomes an alchemist, manifesting creations from seemingly nothing, rupturing space and time to soak the city in affect.

Final Remarks, Part 1 In this first Part of the book, I have taken on the ambitious task of situating synchronicity as a flow of artistic practice that connects bodies – artists and audiences – with the territorialities of both the inner world and the desiring-body Earth. To achieve this, I first translated specific works of Guattari, and Deleuze and Guattari, into a diagram, to suggest how systems of signs operate to control everyday experience, and how lines of flight might escape the dictatorship of the signifier. I have used contemporary scholarship to connect Jung with Deleuze and Spinoza (particularly Deleuze’s Spinoza) to emphasize the importance of synchronicity as a means to revitalize our everyday experiences of the city. I have been careful to articulate that synchronicity implies both bodily affect and the thoughts of the mind, which is, all at once: a oneness of experience, as related to felt autonomous affectivities and a momentary awareness of the eternal a mind–body flow of synchronistic becomings that coalesces into artistic creation new Universes of Value drawn from the intensive real that provide urban bodies with moments of expanded awareness and heightened perceptibility.

The second part of the book will mostly (though not entirely) leave behind autonomous affectivities and enter, instead, into the perceptual realm by which

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we humans form our understandings of the world. In relation to Figure 2, we will work within the bounding conditions of the mode, wherein ambiances and atmospheres affect our body to produce those feelings that inform our impressions of the world. Thus, it is to the realm of the sensory we now turn, with a focus on methods for adopting a synchronistic approach to assist artists in their efforts to challenge the functional demands of the city, and create sites whereby the urban roar irrupts to entangle our beings with the desiring-body Earth.


Part 2

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Introduction Tyson Yunkaporta, in his important book Sand Talk: How Indigenous Thinking Can Save the World (2019), offers its readers access to the living cosmologies of Australian Aboriginal people. He dedicates a part of his discussions (or yarns, as he calls them) to a consideration of the spiritual. There is a chapter in his book titled Of Spirit and Spirits that I felt resonated with the intentions of this book. I use it here to connect the immaterial and esoteric arguments of Part 1, with the everyday and experiential discussion contained here in Part 2. He writes: There are aspects of consciousness, knowledge and knowledge transmission that have not been explained or proven scientifically and are therefore avoided in cognitive science. I’m calling these aspects ‘extra cognitive’ for want of a better word. They include the messages that land and Ancestors bring to us – a bird or animal behaving strangely, a sudden wind gust, a coincidence that highlights a deep meaning or revelation, a burst of inspiration – these are the things that make knowledge processes sacred and magical. (155; my italics)

Before I discuss this quote, I want to remind the reader that in Part 1 of this book much attention was given to Guattari’s writings on Indigeneity, and his argument that ritual could amplify desiring-flows within and between bodies. Guattari refers to new Universes of Value, which at times, as in Yunkaporta’s text, are likened to magical phenomena – that is, new possible worlds – typically beyond apprehension – that emerge within/across living and non-living bodies. However, while Guattari assists us in becoming aware of the possibilities of Indigenous thinking in invoking new Universes of Value, it is Indigenous thinkers themselves to whom we should turn to discover pathways (lines of flight) out of our terminable civilization towards new possible relationships with


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the land1. These new Universes of Value are, of course, not very new at all; they are what have been so efficiently disposed of by colonial techno-semiological power structures unable to make room for cultural/social/personal expressions that do not succumb to the dictatorship of the signifier, which accommodates only very narrow understandings/interpretations of the real. The recent emergence of post-colonial thinking in Western civilization is welcome, as it provides an invitation for all of us to open our ears and listen to the advice and guidance, in a spirit of learning, to those voices – such as Yunkaporta’s – that are genealogically and spiritually connected with ancient cultures and knowledges. These challenges to Western civilization provide openings for new ways of relating to the world and one another. Synchronicity is one such opening. It ruptures the reductive functions of the rational by placing value on intuitive knowledge and relationships. In my opinion, what Yunkaporta brings to our attention in the aforementioned quote is that synchronicity remains a valued phenomenon in his culture, even after so many millennia. However, through Yunkaporta’s words we can see that it is not only through ritual that desiring-flows might be amplified (as described by Guattari). Any seemingly ordinary moment can become an extraordinary synchronous experience. This suggests that the possibility of experiencing synchronicity is always and everywhere immanent, though it is only ever experienced as something deeply personal (a oneness of experience). Yunkaporta speaks of perceptual encounters with the world through which a ‘burst of inspiration’ connects an individual with something that is ancestral or landbased. Although these are synchronicities occurring within complex knowledge systems that are well beyond my understanding, their similarity to Jung’s definition of synchronicity is striking. Could we imagine the appearance of an archetype (or essence, via Deleuze’s Spinoza) during a synchronous experience as being equivalent to such a ‘burst of inspiration’? A momentary awareness of the eternal? Christian Kerslake (2007: 143), whose scholarship stimulated much of the thinking in Part 1 of this book, states that Jung’s ‘synchronicity occurs within the experience of one subject. What they see with their senses has an acausal correspondence with what they are thinking.’ This seems a fair summary of Jung’s various definitions, and at the same time is commensurate with Yunkaporta’s description of meaningful coincidence. By linking this fragment of Indigenous thinking revealed by Yunkaporta with the insights of Jung, we can perhaps begin to see Jung’s work on synchronicity and the archetypes not so much as a discovery, but as a rediscovery of something Other key texts discussing Indigenous knowledge the reader might be interested to explore include Shawn Wilson’s (2008) Research is ceremony: indigenous Research Methods and Margo Neale and Lynne Kelly’s (2020) Songlines: The Power and Promise.


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forgotten or repressed. As argued in Part 1, our civilization has become increasingly focused on our techno-semiological productions, which are divorced from the land and thereby bifurcated from the desiring-body Earth. This, it was argued, is due to the deterritorialization of land-based Indigeneity towards the techno-semiotic drives of civilization: a brutal process driven by colonization. In contemporary civilizations, integrated, synchronous relationships between land and human are disparaged as acausal irrationalities that have no relevance to the dictatorship of the signifier (which demands we work, consume, homogenize, etc.). Understood as such, we can recognize Jung as brave, if nothing else, for legitimizing an ancient experiential phenomenon that is threatening to established individual and social norms. As discussed, a meaningful coincidence (synchronicity) is an acausal confluence of mind and body or, to reference Deleuze, the moment that the mind recognizes the eternal essence of the body. The ‘burst of inspiration’ Yunkaporta mentions could be understood as the rush of the eternal overwhelming the mind’s rational drives, thereby revealing, if only for a moment, the (pre-personal) immanent eternities that always precede perception. In Yunkaporta’s words, it is the eternal rhythms of the land and its ancestral voices that speak to the Aboriginal body via synchronicity or, using his word, coincidence. I appreciate that I am in danger here of appropriation, so I want to be clear that I felt like a student reading Yunkaporta and am deeply grateful for his generous scholarship. He has shared living knowledge of Aboriginal Australia that reaffirms for me the continuing importance of Indigenous ways of thinking, which enable people to exist with the land and other animals in a way seemingly inaccessible under the exploitive drives of modern civilization. And I keep his scholarship in mind, as I do the thinkers explored in Part 1, as I turn to the theme of Part 2 of this book – atmosphere. Having, in Part 1, made a case for the immaterial flows of desire and the lines of flight through which it manifests the new, I now turn to the material or the real, as we perceive it. A discussion of the material is a discussion of the corporeal: that is, the world(s) in which our bodies are immersed. To achieve this, I will use three terms from areas of interrelated scholarship – ‘ambience’, ‘ambiance’ and ‘atmosphere’ – and discuss how an integrated approach that combines their subtle differences can assist the creative practitioner in their fieldwork, and complicate their understanding of the real. This is by no means a deep scholarly investigation of these rich fields of research in which others are better versed (see Schmidt 2013, 2015; Thibaud 2011, 2015, 2020; Böhme 2017b), but, rather, a method for creative application as discussed through key sonic (or at least partly sonic) thinkers I have identified, namely Ulrich Schmidt (ambience), Jean-Paul Thibaud


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(ambiance) and Gernot Böhme (atmosphere). After a brief discussion of how this comparative scholarship relates to the acausal principle of synchronicity in regard to mind–body relationships, I will then turn to a discussion of its relationship to urban sound design. This section concludes by moving towards Part 3, in which I discuss an experimental study that engaged with a group of artists to discover autonomous affectivities.

A philosophy of the body I begin here with Brian Ott’s excellent overview of ‘affect studies’, included in the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Communication as ‘Affect in Critical Studies’ (2017). Ott’s discussion presents affect as both an emotional and pre-personal intensive force. He traces emotional affect to the work of psychologists and neuroscientists – a more easily grasped (or, perhaps, rationally comprehended) notion of affect given its relationships to personal emotional experiences. He then provides an overview of contemporary philosophers, including Ben Anderson, Nigel Thrift and Brian Massumi, who all argue for affect as an intensive, pre-personal force. In discussing the distinctions of personal and pre-personal affect in my earlier book Sonic Rupture, I argued that a transversal field of environmental sound can be considered pre-personal and that bodies immersed in those sonic fields express personal emotive affects in relation to the encountered sonic flows. Interestingly, though, Ott provides a third perspective on affect that bridges the pre-personal and personal: namely, the theory of atmospheres. I didn’t give so much attention to atmosphere in Sonic Rupture, probably because I was less familiar with the scholarship than I am now. While writing that book I was much more aware of ambiance theory, via Thibaud (2011), which has its roots in sound studies via the expansive urban sound scholarship of the Centre for Sonic Space and the Urban Environment (CRESSON). Ambiance was a concept present in Sonic Rupture, though at the time I considered it as an addendum to sonic experience. I now realize that the power of the terms ‘atmosphere’ and ‘ambiance’ is their inclusive multisensory perspective; with no exclusive focus on sound (though sound is certainly important) they allow an integration of the multiple mediums of perception that affect our senses. When Ott discusses atmosphere, he uses the title Stuck in the Middle with You. This is apt – by presenting a concept that requires both pre-personal and personal affect

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for its existence, atmosphere theory is effective in breaking down distinctions between the two. Although Ott foregrounds the ability of atmosphere to bridge the pre-personal and personal, it is best known as a concept that connects the sensing body and the external environment. It is most certainly the theory of the ‘in-between’. What I now want to do is focus on three very similar but distinct approaches to atmospheres that we can define as ‘ambience’, ‘ambiance’ and ‘atmosphere’. Often these terms are used interchangeably. However, they have important differences that can be identified, which, in my opinion, should be understood before they are applied to practice, if only to assist in complicating the fieldwork practitioner’s relationship with the sensory world. Each approach pays careful attention to the ‘in-between’, especially those mediums – sound, air, light, temperature and so on – that shape our perception of the world. However, each term signifies a unique approach that provides differing perspectives on the artistic body’s relationship with the surrounding world (well, anybody, but I want to remain focused on artistic research). For the purposes of this study, this is an important step in understanding how artistic research (as diagrammed in Part 1) can transform urban spaces, through practice, via relations with autonomous affectivities (the subject of Part 3). By defining these terms we can begin to have a more focused discussion about how the sound artist relates to the environment and how the particularities of each theory can be applied – or made useful – in each mode of practice. All three terms are carefully located in Figure 3, which attempts to retain Guattari’s diagrammatic intentions. It imagines a frozen moment in which the perceiver absorbs the radiations of an ambient field. A medium (in this case sound) is radiating towards the perceiver. As the body perceives these radiations, a sense of atmosphere emerges; this is the moment of interconnection, or how a place feels. In Figure 3, desire, which is always in abundance and exceeds our processing capacities, is diagrammed as an intensive force that flows through the human mode (constituted by the mind and body attributes). Note also the microphone, which extends from the mode (body and mind) towards the radiating ambient field. The microphone references the field recordist; however, it could also be a camera/video/paintbrush as applied by a visual artist, and perhaps the tools of other multisensory practices. The point is that the technologies we distribute within ambient fields that collect sounds are an extension of both our capacity for reason and our physical practice or doing. We learn to operate a piece of technology (machine) by learning codes/common notions (via a teacher/friend/


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Figure 3  Locating ambiance, atmosphere and ambience within the perceptual field. Note that the two attributes have been retained as per Figure 2 (page 63). In this case ‘ambiance’ and ‘ambience’ are presented as the two ends of an axis. Ambiance is how the body perceives the world and develops its understandings via perception; for the purposes of this figure, the perceiver is considered to be located at this point. Ambience is the world as it presents itself to the perceiver via the radiating ambient fields of the external environment. Atmosphere requires both perception and radiation – it is the becoming of the sensing body, as it comes to understand the world anew. The microphone is connected to both body and mind, insofar as both body and mind form the human mode, in this case a sound artist working in the field.

manual) and we apply what we have learnt – in the case of Figure 3 – to fieldrecording practices. But it is the body and mind working in parallel that enables the synchronous emergence of the new. One doesn’t just plant a microphone in its place and walk away (though one could); rather, there are multiple idiosyncratic

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techniques employed by artists as they use technology to discover, explore and experiment with the environments of their inquiry. Cathy Lane and Angus Carlyle’s book In the Field: The Art of Field Recording (2013) provides multiple examples of specific artistic approaches to fieldwork, demonstrating that there is no single method, even though multiple artists might use the same technology. And Leah Barclay’s (2019) sound practice, in which she reveals underwater sonic ecologies and new modes of listening, provides a further example of how practices are evolving in tandem with new technologies. As field recordists become more adept, their methods for interconnecting with the environment become increasingly sophisticated and creative, which leads more readily to the development of intuitive practices. Let us now turn to the three approaches. The reader is encouraged to note the location of ambiance, ambience and atmosphere in the diagram, before moving to the description of each.

Ambience On the right side of Figure 3 is the term ‘ambience’. It is more often found in the adjectival form ambient, which is described by Thibaud in his paper ‘A Brief Archaeology of the Notion of Ambiance’ (2020) as a scientific term. Ambient temperature, ambient sound, ambient pollution and so on, all refer to something measurable, and therefore something external to the body that measures. We can extend this insight to say it refers to something external to the body. In everyday usage we might refer to the ambience of a restaurant as pleasant, making this assessment in relation to the placement of lighting and objects or to the crowd it attracts. The point is that while the term most certainly does refer to the in-between, it tends to place emphasis on the external mediums that wrap around, and immerse, our bodies. A number of existing papers by Schmidt inform my understanding of ambience, which I will now discuss. In these papers, Schmidt often refers to ambience as something external, though he does so in the context of the feeling of place. Schmidt (2013: 182) states that ‘ambience is often associated with a certain background character’, such as background music that sits at the periphery of our attention, though he then describes the immersivity of ambience as breaking down any distinction between background and foreground (183). Elsewhere, Schmidt (2015: 30–1) extends Nigel Thrift’s concept of movement– space (that spaces, in their fold and flow, are dynamic) into a discussion of ambient phenomena as that ‘which surrounds, or encompasses’ or ‘encircles


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and circulates’ all around us into a ‘ubiquitous whole’. He points out that we are surrounded not just by mediums, but that there is also a surrounding effect that makes us feel immersed. While ambience, ambiance and atmosphere all emphasize the in-between, we can detect in the term ‘ambience’, via Schmidt, a greater focus on the immersivity of the mediums through which our perception comes to know the world. The heat of the sun, the sounds of the streets, the redolence of spring, the movement of air, even the slow decay of buildings are an all-encompassing phenomena that flood our sensing bodies; the body is the central point that always finds itself in the middle of an enfolding ambience. Another key figure who writes about ambience is Timothy Morton. Morton is better known for his work on object-oriented ontology and environmental ethics. But preceding these studies, he wrote a fascinating paper on ambience titled ‘Why Ambient Poetics? Outline for a Depthless Ecology’ (2002). In it, Morton wants to reframe ecological studies by focusing on the ambience of space, wherein environmental discussions that are free of guilt – the guilt of our role in the ecological crisis – can take place (54). In a somewhat Guattarian (ecosophical) move he connects ecological consciousness with space and politics claiming that they should all be considered as equally important if we are to start taking care of our world. Morton is a staunch critic of the forlorn romantic staring at a beautiful world, woeful about their role in its destruction, for this produces a paralysis in which action is not possible. A focus on ambient poetics, he suggests, can wake us to the possible; he writes: ‘[Ambient poetics] does not want to give up on the idea that the aesthetic dimension can, in some sense, show us how to live; that the perceptual field, as awakened and provoked by what we call art can make us behave differently and think differently’ (56). Again, the sense of the in-between is central to the argument, but there is a focus on the aesthetics of space –that is, how the external conditions of space are perceived. It is also interesting to note how Morton foregrounds art as a means to transform ambience and thereby help us to think differently. As will be seen, this approach is key to Part 3. To summarize, while the two thinkers approach ambience differently, both refer to ambience as something that fills space, immersing the perceiver and evoking experiences. In Figure 3, an ambient field (somewhat clumsily, I must admit) is frozen in a moment of its propagation. Imagine the instant before inhaling the sweet scents of a frangipani tree, before unexpected footsteps thunder across your floorboards, or before a blast of winter shocks your exposed skin as you open a door. These are the radiations of ambient fields that are always surrounding

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us, dynamically shaping and shifting our perceptions. However, while we need ambient fields to perceive our world, an ambient field does not require perception for its existence. Even if ambience is something entirely different from what we perceive it to be, I will continue with the presumption that ambience exists with or without our perception (like weather or sunlight, for instance).2 As such, we can think of ambience as something properly external to our bodies. It’s true that the ambient field will be different for others: aurally diverse people, for example, or people from different cultures who perceive and know a very different world, or animals that perceive sound and light in different frequency ranges. But if we can leave behind for a moment the question of perception, we can consider the entirety of the earth’s atmosphere as a transversal ambient field – dynamic, fluctuating, in movement and impossibly complex. In order to consider it in the context of perception – as conditioned by our species, including our gendered, cultural and individual circumstances – we turn to a consideration of ambiance.

Ambiance Jean-Paul Thibaud, in his paper ‘A Brief Archaeology of the Notion of Ambiance’ (2020) traces the genealogy of the term ‘ambience’ to ambire (as does Schmidt 2013). The prefix amb-, he writes, originally means ‘around or both sides’ (para 4), referring to the action of ‘both arms in a warm embrace’. He goes on to say that this poetic reference preceded Newton’s use of the term ‘ambient’, which marks the point when it took on a colder, more scientific meaning. The paper goes on to develop the concept in greater detail, but of interest here is how Thibaud begins to differentiate the term from similar words (he lists ‘milieu’, ‘climate’, ‘atmosphere’, ‘environment’). Ambiance, he says, is more of an affective term that ‘inherently involves qualitative thinking’ (para. 10); therefore it is a quality, an affective quality, and not just an external condition to be measured. Thibaud is forward in arguing that ‘ambiance’ differs from ‘ambience’ insofar as it is a question of perception – ambiance is perception unfolding into the surrounding mediums which then shape our impression of the world. Thibaud ends his essay by writing that ‘ambiance places the sensorial world at the very centre of living space and constitutes a Such a presumption would be invalidated, of course, if one was to take the position that the world exists only because of our capacity to perceive it. This is, in fact, the position of biocentrism, which claims that all of existence is a probability flux that, via our observations, collapses into the world we presume to be real. See Lanza and Berman (2010) for further discussion.



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condition of possibility’ (para. 39). It is within this ‘condition of possibility’ that the artist can intervene by transforming the mediums of our perception, from which might emerge new Universes of Value. Elsewhere, Thibaud (2011) is more explicit about the relationship of ambiance to the sonic. He argues that the sonic allows us to leave behind the representation of images, and, instead, engage with the idea of resonance. It is worth recalling Buchanan’s foregrounding of resonance (see Introduction, p.7) as key to understanding Deleuze and Guattari’s machinic assemblages. As discussed, he claims the term ‘resonance’ is little explored in studies of Deleuze and Guattari, although it is key to their thinking. So it is interesting to discover that Thibaud (2011: 8) writes: ‘with the idea of resonance, the world of sound makes explicit the very power of attunement to an ambiance. It helps to describe the very processes by which I feel and sense the world. This may be why sounds – like ambiances – are so close to affective and emotional experience.’ Therefore, sound attunes our emotions (personal) depending on the resonance of space, just as (sonic) desire (pre-personal) can assemble bodies into fixed patterns of behaviour. Consider the sonic desire evoked by a battle cry or musical instrument (horn, trumpet, drum, etc.) of war – mobilizing bodies into collective action. A way to picture this is to think of resonance as a standing wave that creates a type of atmospheric holding pattern (wherein interference patterns are made static).3 Pre-personal desire captures, or orders, bodies in a way that is similar to a standing wave forcing materials into a holding pattern. Consider the following examples: a protesting crowd moving through a city, pulsating bodies on a dance floor, languid guests at the end of a dinner party, a murmuration of starlings. These are not just individuals consciously participating in a shared event; they are bodies locked into a resonant pattern formed by transversal forces of desire. This idea of resonance is also applicable to city life, where the repeating, resonate structures of transversal soundscapes shape the everyday behaviours, actions and gestures of our bodies. In an interview I completed with Thibaud in 2020, Deleuze and Guattari were raised when Thibaud connected the term ‘molecular’ to ambiance.4 I encourage the reader to watch the interview at the provided link, rather than depending on the brief comment I will make here; but this is how I have come to interpret the conversation. Deleuze and Guattari speak of the ‘molar’ and the ‘molecular’, with the molar describing large institutional forces that capture our lives into Such a holding pattern is produced to great effect by composer La Monte Young in Dream House, where nodes of interference can be discovered by the exploring body as varying sonic intensities. 4 See https​:/​/jo​​rdan-​​lacey​​.com/​​proje​​ct​/tr​​ansla​​ting-​​ambia​​nce​?i​​ndex=​​jean-​​​paul-​​thiba​​ud. 3

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particular technological and semiotic forms, and the molecular representing points at which lines of flight can develop – whether these are individual actions, the effects of non-human bodies, momentary chance encounters or even prepersonal affective emergences. Within this list of possibilities ambiance acts as a molecular event in which perceptions momentarily dissolve, or disrupt, our techno-semiological capture to reveal new possible worlds of perception and knowing. As an example, I remember in 2000 joining the anti-globalization protests in London. The shops were boarded up, and environmental activists flooded the streets looking for change. The police were omnipresent and had cordoned off the protesters, but at one point the protesters broke free, and I found myself caught in the surge. It was an exhilarating moment – as if desire ‘sprang a leak’ that surged into a line of flight. There was a sudden moment in which I realized just how different everything could be – the affectations of desire – but the molar forces quickly plugged the leak as police lines blocked every path (with the assistance of helicopters) and reinstated the expected resonating pattern of IWC (alright, you’ve had your fun – back to work!). What created this feeling? I consider it to be the rupturing of typically contained desire, whereby my perceptions momentarily manifested a new world, however briefly. Note that the term ‘ambiance’ is located directly on the body in Figure 3, and within the environmental radiations. Also note that ‘ambiance’ and ‘ambience’ are located at opposite ends of the same pole. This is consistent with each term’s theoretical position, with ambiance skewed towards the perceiving body and ambience skewed towards the environmental radiations that immerse the body; however, both remain located in the in-between (which the pole stretches through), a zone best captured by the term ‘atmosphere’. And so, when I speak of ambiance in this book, I am speaking of the body that perceives the world. It is the personal experience of the subject, which can be known only through the immediate situation of that subject. The affected body can be thought of as the locus of ambiance. I can use my mind to try and describe what I think the ambience of a space is, and perhaps even develop common notions to describe it (via ambient measurements) but my affective bodily response always precedes (and exceeds) any description, which will always be an inadequate account of the actuality of feelings and sense of place. This is why ambiance is strongly connected with the sociological and the ethnographic: it can be understood only via the account of the perceiving subject. This explains its position on the body attribute in Figure 3, as the perceiving body is always the first point of contact with the dynamics of the

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external world. To reiterate, ambiances are those perceptual experiences through which we come to know the world.

Atmosphere In Figure 3, the term ‘atmosphere’ is located directly in between ambience and ambiance, where ambient radiations and perceptual apprehension meet: the in-between in which atmospheres emerge. This is in keeping with philosopher Gernot Böhme’s (2017b: 2) theory of atmospheres. He defines an atmosphere in multiple ways, but the following definition is succinct: Atmosphere is what relates objective factors and constellations of the environment with my bodily feeling in that environment. This means: atmosphere is what is in between, what mediates the two sides [thus] atmosphere is something in between subject and object . . . Atmospheres are quasi-objective, namely they are out there; you can enter an atmosphere and you can be surprisingly caught by an atmosphere. But on the other hand atmospheres are not beings like things; they are nothing without a subject feeling them.

The power of the term ‘atmosphere’ is that it breaks down the traditional subject–object distinction. An atmosphere is not something out there – an object – but, rather, that which is felt by the body. Böhme’s characterization of it as a quasi-object seems somewhat uncommitted – why not just do away with the object altogether, and its implication that there is a separation between us and the world? Atmospheres could, instead be thought of as the actualization of experiential flows that intermesh world and body: transversal flows, not separated objects. In fact, there may be consistencies to be found here between atmosphere and Karen Barad’s ‘agential realism’. Barad (2007) uses the doubleslit experiment (which demonstrates that the nature of reality is dependent on our perception) to build a quantum argument for an entanglement of bodies and world. Any separation is superficial, as quantum interactions mean that the real, rather than being fixed, is always being performed, such that the world and I co-become through action. Here, there is no need for an in-between, because there are no separate things to create an in-between. Atmosphere, as defined by Böhme, still has the problem of denoting an ephemeral medium (a quasi-object) that is located between a subject and an object, even though this is exactly what it is trying to overcome. Perhaps Barad’s use of quantum-informed theories to break this need for separation is more astute. However, this book maintains

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focus on atmosphere, as it speaks to perception in an everyday context. Given that we cannot perceive quantum phenomena beyond the theoretical reckonings of a physicist, maintaining ‘atmosphere’ as a notion of the in-between will do, particularly when used in the context of urban transformation. While it might be easier to describe how an atmosphere is felt by the body, it is more difficult to describe or locate an atmosphere as an external phenomena. Hermann Schmitz’s paper Atmospheric Spaces (2016: 4) provides an explanation with the use of what he calls ‘area-less’ space. He writes that ‘the two most important types of area-less spaces are the space of the felt body and the space of emotions as atmospheres’. For Schmitz the felt body is what we might think of as the inner world (as related to the psyche or soul), which we know without recourse to the five senses. He continues, ‘emotions are atmospheres in an area-less space which can be congruent with the locational space that covers an area, just like the area-less spaces of sound and silence, but which is also capable of extending beyond that’ (2016: 8). Thus, atmosphere is both the felt body, and an area-less space that is concomitantly emotional (felt space) and without emotion (external space). Schmitz’s connection of the felt body with the inner world (psyche) is of particular interest here, and will be revisited later. Thought of spatially, Schmitz’s atmospheres appear close to Böhme’s definition (as quoted earlier); for both, an atmosphere is simultaneously human emotion and an external environment. The in-between space of atmospheres has no specifically fixed semiotic structures such as those applied to representational objects. For instance, it would be easy for me to describe all of the objects by which I now find myself surrounded. But my perception of these objects is mediated by atmospheres that determine how my perceptions know the world. For instance, what appears to be an object is, in fact, light, and this light shapes my perceptions. I can create some common notions with others to determine objects’ qualities, which would become our shared representation of those objects; however, a passing fog that transforms them (despite what we might determine their objective reality to be) changes their appearance. A world of fixed objects is therefore not a world of objects at all, but, rather, a collective capacity to apply reason (common notions) that renders an environment representational. In reality what surrounds us is a maelstrom of ephemeral ambiences that are continually shaping and reshaping our perception. As a thought experiment, consider that at dusk, when the world turns dark, all of the objects we think we know seemingly disappear. Imagine living in a world with only night – would our perception not inform us that the colours we perceive are the fixed (and not transitional) qualities of these objects?


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The point is that there is nothing fixed and representational about objects: the ephemeral in-between of atmospheres ensures that the world is never stable; it is always becoming. Having said that, we need to be careful not to fall into a romanticized vision of what atmospheres can or should be. There is some danger of this, as the concept of atmosphere is deeply entrenched in notions of beauty, as a legacy of Böhme’s abiding interest in Kantian aesthetics. Böhme has been criticized for this; for example, Andrea Wheeler (2016) claims that Böhme’s feeling body is, in fact, a gendered body, a privileged body, and that he ignores the experience of women in space, particularly in relationship to architecture. Böhme (2017 b: 27) himself considers that discussions of beauty are outdated: he says, ‘Today, aesthetic is no longer by any account the beautification of life or the appearance of reconciliation; rather, with the aestheticization of politics and the staging of everyday life, it has become a political power and an economic factor.’ Thus atmospheres are political, insofar as they exert an affective force that operates in the context of the everyday. It provokes the question: How can an everyday atmosphere be transformed such that it produces a different perceived reality? One would hope this is a battle to be fought by all genders, together (at least as far as the political force of capitalism is concerned). This is not to diminish Wheeler’s argument that architecture is male dominated and favours the male body (which it certainly does), but to say that perhaps Böhme’s arguments – considered in the context of affective politics – are more inclusive and considerate of all bodies than the impression Wheeler provides. Another criticism aimed at Böhme, which I will expand on later, comes from Shanti Sumartojo and Sarah Pink (2018), who dispute Böhme’s notion that an atmosphere can be staged. This is a considerable challenge to Böhme, who pins a lot on this idea. He uses theatre as an example of how an atmosphere can be staged to create specific affects via set design. Sumartojo and Pink argue that an atmosphere cannot be designed, produced or staged, as an atmosphere always already exists; for instance, we can be sure that an atmosphere already existed in the theatre before the play’s props were installed. However, they assert that an atmosphere can be transformed. If we take on this position, we open a pathway for artists to undo and/or challenge atmospheric controls through intervention; rather than creating something new, they transform a given situation. As I argued in Sonic Rupture, sonic atmospheres (soundscapes) are highly dynamic; it is their ephemerality and dynamism that make them an easier target for rupture. This insight is also key to my argument for urban transformation. This book considers

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urban atmospheres to be dominated globally by IWC, forming atmospheres that have the singular intention of generating profit through the production of conditioned climates that improve worker efficiency and encourage consumer activity. This phenomenon has its roots in Muzak’s intentions to make factory workers more efficient; since then, Muzak has morphed into a more efficient beast called Mood Media, which seeks to condition all modes of sensory ambience into unique experiences in a variety of consumer environments. The role of atmospheres in manipulating online shopping experiences is also an ongoing area of research (Wu et al. 2014; Manganari, Siomkos and Vrechopolous 2009; Chen and Li 2020). It is the undoing of these controlling atmospheres, which are of increasing scope and potency, that becomes the motivation for intervention. In an interview I conducted with Böhme he spoke at length about his book Critique of Aesthetic Capitalism (2017a).5 He writes about the power of capitalism to stage atmospheres that encourage people to purchase luxury items they don’t need. For instance, atmospheres can be thought of as subtly floating within the cavernous spaces of shopping centres, exerting an influential force that tailors our acceptance of and appreciation for the consumer lifestyle. Beyond these temples of consumerism, capitalism installs objects throughout the city’s public places to produce the same affect (advertising billboards, screens, audio systems, shopfronts, etc.). Collectively they express a semiotics of control that affects the movements and habits of bodies (mainly human bodies as the producers of profit, but we might also speculate about the impact on non-human bodies that support consumer-driven outcomes; for instance, tactically placed trees, birdproofing infrastructures, dog-friendly locations and so on). However, Böhme (2017b: 170) also suggests that within the consideration of an aesthetic politics, there is an opportunity for art to intervene in everyday urban atmospheres. He writes that ‘being aesthetic means, according to the new aesthetics, that the work manifests itself to the individual who experiences it in such a way that its manifestation as such becomes evident as well. Art, in this case, becomes a demonstration of the possibility of creating atmospheres.’ What Böhme seems to be saying here is that the aesthetics of art is no longer exclusively driven by a desire to generate beauty, but, rather, to bring attention to manifested atmospheres and the experiential possibilities they engender. In this passage he is referring to the way music can be expressed as a form of environmental art; indeed, Böhme wrote an article for the first edition of the WFAE’s journal See https​:/​/jo​​rdan-​​lacey​​.com/​​proje​​ct​/tr​​ansla​​ting-​​ambia​​nce​?i​​ndex=​​prof-​​​gerno​​t​-boh​​me.



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Soundscape (2000: 14–18), demonstrating the relationship between atmosphere, artistic intervention and environmental sound. Of all the arts, it is significant that Böhme (2017b) advances sound as an effective way to transform atmospheres. He extols the works of German sound artists, in particular Sam Auinger (170) and Hans Peter Kuhn (187). Sam Auinger, in collaboration with Bruce Odland, uses tuning tubes to transform traffic sounds. For example, in Harmonic Bridge (1998) in North Adams, Massachusetts, two 16-foot tuning tubes with an embedded microphone tune the traffic of an overpass to the key of C, creating a pleasingly melodic environment beneath the bridge. Hans Peter Kuhn uses sampling playback methods through large speaker arrays to transform outdoor urban environments, including the 24-speaker audio system in Neville Street Refurbishment (2008) in an underpass in Leeds, a busy thoroughfare for traffic and pedestrians (see Lacey 2016a: 163–4 for a detailed description of both works). The relationship between sound and atmosphere, as also emphasized by Thibaud, is particularly strong – sound is affective, dynamic and susceptible to change in response to the most minor of interventions. It is notable that when I contacted Böhme to ask for an interview he asked me, ‘Is this about making atmospheres or talking about atmospheres?’ making it clear that it is the former that he was interested in. During our interview he spoke about his leadership of the Institute for Practical Philosophy in Darmstadt, which combines the skills of theorists and artists (such as Sam Auinger) to concentrate on the making of atmospheres, rather than exclusively propagating text-based philosophizing of atmospheres. Can we consider atmosphere to be a radicalization of philosophy, where it tips over from written words into the transformation of material worlds? If so, we can argue that studies of atmosphere have become every bit as pragmatic as Guattari’s ecosophy, and that perhaps we are witnessing a welcome shift out of the ivory towers of academia into the streets, insofar as philosophy is applied in transforming the real rather than remaining solely in the realm of theories and ideas. This transformation is fitting for a theory of the body; it seems that Spinoza is validated as, finally, attention turns towards the largely ignored phenomenon of felt affects. Beyond its immediate bodily affects, using the term ‘atmosphere’ enables us to push towards something deeper – the pre-personal. Orr, for instance, states that atmosphere is able to bridge the pre-personal and the personal as it is not only about the feeling of space but also about the intensive movement of affect that gives rise to these feelings. An atmosphere always exceeds what is perceived, insofar as it is driven by pre-personal affect. I like to think about it this way: the

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atmosphere I absorb right now – the light of the sun and the smell of trees, the sounds of nearby traffic and my sound system, the feeling of the computer keys upon my skin – these are all within reach of my perception and it is this that informs my body’s immediate impression of the world. But the air and light and sound I experience continues beyond my perceptions, circumventing the earth and immersing bodies everywhere in perceptual worlds unique to their situations. Thought of globally, no one owns atmospheres or can control them. Yes, we can transform the atmosphere (as made abundantly clear by climate change, urban noise, pollution of oceans, etc.); but as an intensive force that emanates from the body of the earth, the atmosphere’s shifting dynamics, ability to touch every part of the earth and sheer power will always exceed the intentions and actions of the human (or any) species. Assuredly, some small critter will breathe again after our demise (just as our oxygen-burning plant ancestors began to thrive after the ‘great oxygenation’ mass-extinction event, triggered by cyanobacteria some 2.5 billion years ago). Just as atmospheres inform our perception of the real in our immediate situation, by dissolving theories of representation and separation, they can remind us of our planetary (material and immaterial) interconnectedness with all life at all times. It is truly the home of the body, just as the collective unconscious is truly the home of the mind/psyche, a topic to which I will briefly return.

Connecting affective atmospheres with fields of archetypes Marie-Louise von Franz was a respected Jungian psychoanalyst and a friend of Jung. While better known for her work on fairy tales and alchemical processes, von Franz’s book On Divination and Synchronicity (1980), which comprises five lectures, will be my focus here. It is a fascinating read that introduces a new concept into the discussion of synchronicity: von Franz describes the collective unconscious as a ‘field of archetypes’ which exists in relation to our psyche. This opens up a very interesting perspective, when we compare this field to the atmospheric affects in which our bodies are immersed. It suggests that the body’s knowledge and the mind’s awareness can act simultaneously to bridge, or bring to consciousness, the existence of synchronistic phenomena (as pictured in Figure 4). This observation is intended as a cue for artistic experimentation, and eventually intervention, in the everyday atmospheres of city life. Two things to note before reading on: First, I am using the term ‘archetypes’ in this part of


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Figure 4  Locating fields of archetypes in relationship to the atmospheric field. To the left is a field of archetypes (via von Franz). They form a relational field that differentiates the collective unconscious. The diagram shows one of these archetypes connecting with the psyche in synchronicity with the body’s connection with a realworld event. The term ‘synchronicity’ simultaneously touches ‘psyche’ and ‘body’, in keeping with its acausal and coincident emergence. The wavy lines express the resonance of body and psyche during synchronicity experiences, whether this is apprehended as an eternal essence (see page 75–7) or directed into the creation of artworks. These wavy lines might also be connected with notions of an internally felt atmosphere (via Schmitz), that bridge the inner and outer worlds.

the book, as my discussion leans heavily on the scholarship of Jung and von Franz, who use the term frequently (I will use ‘autonomous affectivities’ more consistently in Part 3, as a term that encompasses both archetypes and essences). Second, the term ‘psyche’, as I understand it, is the energetic activity of the mind when in direct relationship with the collective unconscious, while the term ‘mind’ refers to Spinoza’s second type of knowledge – our capacity for reason and its establishment of common notions. Von Franz spends considerable time in her book comparing synchronistic knowledge with the knowledge obtained through mathematics and the natural sciences. As she explains it, synchronicity is related to the integer 1 while the sciences are related to the integer n (an infinite series). She describes synchronistic

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knowledge as that produced via oracular and divinatory approaches that are able to capture the whole (oneness) of reality in a specific moment in time, contrasting this with mathematics and the natural sciences, which produce knowledge through the repetition of experiments about parts of reality. As she writes: The big difference which I have already pointed out, between the physical experiment and the oracle is that the experiment acquires precision by repetition. The more often a physical experiment is repeated with the same result, the more accurate the result will be. No natural scientist will ever accept a statement published in a paper to the effect that such and such an experiment has been made once with such and such a result. He would reject it, saying that the experiment needs to be repeated as often as possible . . . if an infinite number of repetitions gives the same result then it may be taken as accurate. The oracle has a complementary standpoint in that it takes change as its basis and is accurate only if thrown only once, making the chance result the centre of reflection . . . . One cannot make an experiment without first cutting out a little area of reality within which one tries to obtain information through experiment. The oracle is exactly the opposite, for as far as time is concerned it is unique, because it is thrown only once, and the object is not to obtain information about a fraction of reality but, if possible, about the whole outer, inner, present, and future psychological situation. (52, my italics).

Here von Franz is trying to make room for knowledge approaches that do not fit within rationalist frameworks. My interest is to apply this argument to make room for artistic research in a world that tends to favour rationalism – which, rightly or wrongly, is often associated with scientific thinking – so that it is able to produce knowledge via techniques that absorb the oneness of experience in a given moment of time. It is precisely because synchronistic knowledge is acausal and non-rational that it is often not taken seriously within Western civilization, which tends to have a bias towards the rational. However, the application of this type of knowledge is ancient and continues to be practised by many groups and individuals (including psychologists and, as we will see, composers and sound artists). Typically, synchronicities are accessed via divination techniques (I Ching, tarot, astrology, etc.), which I won’t go into here, except to say that they create openings for the oneness of experience. It is the unrepeatability of such events (and, at times, a user’s conviction of the legitimacy of their unverified experience) that makes rationalists so uncomfortable: von Franz calls this an emotional bias that


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automatically dismisses anything that can’t be verified empirically. It is worth noting that these dismissive attitudes towards synchronistic knowledge are a form of colonial subjection, insofar as they expel vast reservoirs of human knowledge in cultures that have practised, and still use, synchronicity techniques. Perhaps post-colonialist thought should more actively support synchronicity techniques as a valid and important pathway to knowledge? In an important passage, von Franz (1980: 54) describes synchronistic knowledge as follows: Jung says in his paper on synchronicity that synchronistic events – and he classifies all divinatory hit or miss techniques as experiments which have to do with synchronicity – are acts of creation and in that way they are unique. A synchronistic event is a unique, ‘just-so’ story and not predictable precisely because it is always a creative act in time and therefore not regular.

Thus, the conditions that give rise to synchronicity are deeply connected with creativity in a moment of time, or what I have been calling a oneness of experience. Yes, the outcome of such an experience (such as a material creation) could be mimicked, but the actual charge of intensity associated with the original experience cannot. This makes sense if we revisit Deleuze’s claim that while experiencing the third kind of knowledge (that we have already connected with synchronicity), the mind becomes aware of the eternal essence of the body. How else could we perceive the timelessness of eternity other than as a oneness, or wholeness, that is indivisible and therefore only ever experienced in its entirety?6 We might say that while scientists are adept at confirming knowledge about the world with experiments by repeating them as many times as possible, artists are able to produce knowledge through creativity that absorbs the eternal into single acts of creation. These approaches are complementary, and it is my position that acts of urban transformation would benefit from acknowledging both. In sound studies, the person who can be best connected (to my knowledge) with this type of creativity is John Cage, who based many of his compositions on the principles of the I Ching. In fact, von Franz discusses the Chinese practice of the I Ching in great detail, foregrounding it as the example par excellence of divination techniques. To summarize, she describes it as a numerical chance-based system It is interesting to note another comment by von Franz that ‘Jung thinks that the deepest layers of the unconscious, which would mean especially the collective unconscious layers in the psyche, are relatively timeless i.e. outside time and space’ (1980: 95). This further emphasizes my earlier claim that there are consistencies between Spinozist substance and the Jungian collective unconscious, both of which refer to an eternal, monist whole.


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that understands two layers of time, one that is unchanging eternity, the other that is cyclical time superimposed on it. It is the complex numerical interplay of these two types of time that drives the divinations produced by the I Ching (1980: 14). Cage used the I Ching to compose performances that, while consistent in their performative technique, always led to a different sonic outcome; that is, they are one-off, singular emergences that cannot be repeated (at least in regard to their sonic expression). This composition technique presents an acknowledgement of synchronicity (as chance encounter) as giving rise to unique (sonic) emergences in the present moment. It demonstrates that, even if we can’t explain the phenomenon causally, we can at least design a set of parameters that intend to produce experiences of synchronicity, or at the very least are driven by practices that produce chance encounters (I will expand on this point more as the chapter unfolds). In his book Silence ([1961] 1973: 14), in a section titled ‘Experimental Music: Doctrine’, Cage connects sound and synchronicity in various ways. First, he talks about sound as a becoming that does not exist as one of a series of discrete steps but ‘as transmission in all directions from the field’s centre. It is inextricably synchronous with all other, sounds, non-sounds’. As such, sounds exist in an immersive field that cannot be disconnected from the other sounds – indeed all – that surround it. Later he states, in relation to composition technique, ‘I myself use chance operations, some derived from the I Ching, others from the observation of imperfections in the paper upon which I happen to be writing. Your answer [he addresses an imaginary interlocutor]: by not giving it a thought’ (17). It is interesting to note two things here: first, Cage considers sounds as being in synchronous relationship with all other sounds and even non-sounds – all exist at the same time without a necessarily obvious relationship; and second, via chance techniques he is able to remove thought (common notions) from the process of sound-making. A compositional score driven by common notions of tablature, for example, leads to predictable outcomes – typically the playing of notes precisely as they are notated. But by creating techniques that favour chance happenings, his work brings us closer to a synchronistic knowledge-type, at least, in relation to listening and performing experiences. A good example is his Radio Music (1956), a score enabling performers to create a unique sonic expression with each performance by following a set of pre-determined physical actions upon handheld radios.7 For Cage, his compositions that worked with chance operations were part of a broader agenda to set sounds free from the confines of musical notation, enabling sound to express itself in all its mysteriousness and potentiality – sounds become lines of flight, catapulting our listening imaginations towards other possibilities. Indeed, John Cage’s ([1961] 1973: 161) text is replete



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Returning to von Franz (1980: 61), she introduces ‘the idea of the concept of field to explore what Jung calls the collective unconscious, a field in which (each) archetype would be the single activated point’. Her introduction of the idea of the field in relation to archetypes resonates with the discussion of an atmospheric field, wherein immersed bodies uniquely perceive a world. Comparatively, we can consider that our psyche, when immersed in the collective unconscious, uniquely perceives a field of archetypes. It is interesting to consider this in relation to Schmitz’s (2016) felt body. As discussed earlier, he relates this to the inner world (or psyche), which he calls an area-less space that requires no recourse to the five senses. Perhaps we can consider Schmitz’s felt body as a bridge that connects the inner and outer worlds? If so, his notion of atmosphere (which, all at once, Schmitz describes as area-less, emotional and locational) might be considered the locus (so to speak) of the acausal connectedness that is unique to synchronicity experiences. For instance, we could speculate that an archetype presents itself to the felt body at the same moment the body connects with an event in the world, which together generates an atmosphere of felt synchronicity. Though I won’t pursue this idea further here, siting synchronicity in an area-less atmospheric space may warrant further investigation. Typically, the psyche is most active during the experience of dreams, when a multiplicity of images can emerge in relation to a singularly active archetype. But we are not so interested in the archetypal image here as we are in the archetype as pre-personal affect, which can present itself to the psyche in unlimited forms.8 Furthermore, von Franz (63) writes (via Jung) that in the field of the collective unconscious, ‘all archetypes are contaminated with each other’. It is this insight that informs her idea of the field, in which all archetypes are interconnected (von Franz (63) presents a diagram illustrating this), meaning that there are no ‘pure’ archetypes; rather, each archetype is contaminated, or affected by, the others. At this point I remind the reader that I argued in Part 1 that archetypes with comments about the freedom and liberation of sound, freeing it from the musical theories of repetition and representation that contain it; for instance, ‘as contemporary music goes on changing in the way I am changing it what will be done is to more and more completely liberate sounds’. Given the contemporary diversity and degree of sound art practices, surely Cage’s future projections have come to pass. But I have no intention of reifying John Cage – I once heard someone say that even though John Cage used chance techniques in an attempt to remove himself as composer from his music, all of his music still sounds like John Cage! Perhaps – but I am sure a repeated listening to one of his performed compositions would reveal a new field of sounds every time (if only subtly). 8 I remind the reader of this, as it is important to preserve Deleuze’s atheist intentions for the purposes of this book, and to avoid the risk of artistic practices being determined by the formalities of archetypal images. To be clear, I am not diminishing archetypal images – they exist, and they are powerful therapeutic and creative tools – but my intention in connecting the archetypes with Deleuze’s discussion of essences is to make limitless their actualizations in the world of perception, and artistic research/creation.

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have close associations with the essences of Deleuze’s Spinoza. Von Franz’s idea of contamination seems remarkably similar to Deleuze’s proposition (in Expressionism in Philosophy: Spinoza) that each essence is unique, and yet all are made up of the same essence. As I read it, both thinkers seem to be referring to differentiation: that a singular substance (or field) contains differentiated archetypes/essences that are made of a singular collective unconscious/ substance, and which are situated in relationship to each other If we take on this idea of a field of archetypes constituting the collective unconscious, Figure 3 can be expanded to include the synchronous activity of the psyche and body, as I have pictured in Figure 4. The body resonates with a field of atmospheric affects (depending on the situation of its immersion), while at the same time (synchronistically) the psyche resonates with a field of archetypes. The psyche is free to explore the collective unconscious during sleep when the conscious mind is at rest; but while awake, an archetype that reveals itself to the psyche will do so in relationship to the body’s perceptual relationship with the world, which is in keeping with the experience of synchronicity. This process, we can imagine, is continuously active, but it is only when it comes to the attention of the mind that the intensive power of the synchronistic is experienced consciously, opening the mind temporarily to an awareness of the eternal. The mind, as we saw in Part 1, relates to reason (Spinoza’s second knowledge), the facility whereby common notions are formed to assist us in understanding the nature of the world; the mind, as such, does not like its certainty to be challenged. We can extend this to the very definition of the human in the context of contemporary Western civilization, where common notions such as individuality, freedom, liberty, the state, and so on inform our concept of self. The mind demands consistency and regularity wherein it finds its truth – the truth of what is a human, the truth of what is a society, and so forth. Post-colonial theory presents to us the chauvinism of such thought, which we increasingly acknowledge to be the basis of environmental and cultural destruction, globally. That our concept of being human should take precedence over all other life (or in the West, our concept that the white, male human takes precedence over all other humans) now seems breathtaking in its arrogance – thereby presenting the key problem (of self-destruction) common to any civilization that invests wholly in its ‘common notions’. In particular, posthumanism, especially that of Rosi Braidotti (2013), has opened space for new scholarship that challenges the traditional enlightenment focus of the humanities by arguing for non-human, interspecies relationships that give rise to new concepts and practices exploring what it means to be human. This


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intention is well encapsulated, I think, by Holger Schulze’s (2016: 1) ‘humanoid aliens’, a term he applies to challenge the ‘hopelessly essentialist, eurocentric and androcentric, decidedly bourgeois, ableist and western research tradition of anthropology’. Surely, being open to new possibilities of what it means to be human means challenging the common notions that drive the assumptions of our civilization, perhaps even rediscovering those intricacies, perturbations and idiosyncrasies that have been crushed by past and present empires. Unfortunately, there has been little room for synchronistic thinking or related creative techniques in the hubristic tradition of Western enlightenment – here, the mind and its common notions easily quash notions of the pre-personal, and its intensive forces. With the emergence of various philosophies of the body (including those of Spinoza, Deleuze, Böhme and Braidotti), we can now more easily speak of such things. But in many aspects of the academy and beyond, there is still a great resistance to the non-rational. A synchronistic charge can affect anyone, overwhelming the mind and for a fleeting moment revealing those pre-personal eternities flowing beneath the realm of experience. And yet, just as quickly, we are encouraged to turn our backs on such experiences, dismissing them as uncanny moments undeserving of ‘thought’ and an affront to the world of reason. But I wonder if these flashes of intensity are so overwhelming only because we have forgotten how to process this important knowledge-type? I started out referencing the Indigenous thinker, Tyson Yunkaporta, who tells us that such coincidences are accepted and acknowledged events in Indigenous cultures. Perhaps it is time we opened our minds to such possibilities again, if only to temper our hubristic sense of control?9 The sonic theorist Salomé Voegelin provides terminology that helps us to understand the unique ways in which sonic affects can present themselves. While I do not know if Voegelin (2014) makes reference to synchronicity or Jung, her concept of the ‘sonic possible worlds’ is a powerful one. As I read it, a sound can be situated transversally across a landscape, enveloping bodies and listening apparatuses, with its affects emerging as the unique sonic possible world of each listener (and I include non-human listeners). This phenomenological position is, to me, an invitation, to remember that each of us experiences a unique world, Consider this quote from Jung ([1961] 1989): ‘As a matter of fact, day after day we live far beyond the bounds of our consciousness; without our knowledge, the life of the unconscious is also going on within us. The more the critical reason dominates, the more impoverished life becomes; but the more of the unconscious, and the more of myth we are capable of making conscious, the more of life we integrate. Overvalued reason has this in common with political absolutism: under its dominion the individual is pauperized.’


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even when touched by the same event as others. Voegelin’s work is a powerful treatise for the imagination, reminding us that it is able to reveal new worlds every bit as important as those that might be revealed by other faculties. The idea of ‘sonic possible worlds’ means that a sound transmitted across a field could reveal as many synchronistic events as the people it touches: What memory or feeling or association does that sound evoke? What archetype in the field of the unconscious might be activated upon reception of that sound? And once this energetic surge has moved through the listener, what new actions and/or meanings might emerge from this moment? These questions reflect the openness and diversity that the concept of sonic possible worlds is able to generate. There is also a close relationship between synchronicity and the sharawadji effect, a sonic effect analysed in Augoyard and Torgue’s Sonic Experience (2005: 117). The sharawadji effect is ‘an aesthetic effect that characterizes the feeling of plenitude that is sometimes created by the contemplation of a sound motif of a complex soundscape of inexplicable beauty’. It is ‘unexpected and transports us elsewhere, beyond the strict representation of things.’ As such, sharawadji cannot be designed per se, as it is a seemingly accidental phenomenon that somehow ‘produces fascination and is breathtaking’. This sounds very much like synchronicity to me – the emergence of a sublime experience, unexpected and revealing a typically hidden, order of things. The authors also draw a correspondence between sharawadji and John Cage’s experiments with chance and rejection of intention. It is an acknowledgement that feelings of the sublime arise without intention: that meaning can present itself, all in a moment, without design. However, as Cage shows us, we can at least design for the possibility of synchronicity and, as Voegelin shows us, any sonic event has the potential to produce as many unique worlds as the people who encounter it. Set free from representation, sound becomes a bubbling maelstrom of lines of flight, poised to propel our imaginations in heterogeneous directions. Sharawadji is an acknowledgement that the sublime can be found anywhere, and that its emergence is autonomous from the actions and intentions of humans (though, indeed, they may coincide). Cage, Voegelin, and Augoyard and Torgue demonstrate that synchronicity maintains a subtle, though important, presence in sound studies. Using their example, towards the end of Part 2, I will suggest three ways of applying synchronicity drawn from sound studies that might inform efforts to design urban environments. If we accept von Franz’s proposition that a field of archetypes exists in the collective unconscious, then we can begin to imagine


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how a field of atmospheric affects (known to the body) can entwine with a field of archetypes (known to the psyche) in the production of synchronistic experiences. To summarize: that the body is affected by the atmospheres in which it is immersed, is commensurate with the idea that the psyche is affected by the field of archetypes in which it is immersed. Acausal synchronistic events (that typically exist beneath perception), when made conscious, cause the body and psyche to co-resonate. It is the power of this resonance that amplifies desire to temporarily overcome the mind’s rational control, flooding it with pre-personal intensive forces that charge the moment with feelings of eternity, which then manifest in unique creative productions/ideas/expressions. Can we design such moments? Are such urban transformations possible? Probably not – as these moments are so deeply personal. Synchronistic experiences cannot be controlled, or even explained – that is why they are so quickly dismissed by reason; however, we can consider how techniques might be applied with the intention of giving rise to synchronistic, one-off listening experiences. Even to consider the possibility of an active inner world while engaged in material practices could open up a rich source of creative discovery. I will return to this at the end of Part 2. Before this, I will turn to the relationship of atmosphere with urban design.

Acoustic atmospheres and urban design Atmosphere studies, like sound studies, has a strong relationship with urban design. And through a close alignment with atmosphere studies, sound studies is able to find new avenues of practice. This has been a positive development for sound studies, as the discipline is always in danger of slipping into the audiovisual litany (Sterne 2003) whereby a certain reverence is given to sound over other mediums of perception (see Part 1 for further discussion). By contrast, atmosphere studies encompasses all of the senses, giving equal priority to all sensory mediums.10 Having said this, we have to acknowledge that the key thinkers whose ideas have been discussed – Schmidt (ambience); Thibuad (ambiance); Böhme (atmosphere) – all place emphasis on sound over the other For instance, see Ambiances: International Journal of Sensory Environment, Architecture and Urban Space for a range of approaches to designing urban atmospheres (https​:/​/jo​​urnal​​s​.ope​​nedit​​ion​.o​​rg​/ am​​​bianc​​es/), and Issue 6 of the Unlikely Journal for Creative Arts (https://unlikely​.net​.au​/issues​/issue​ -06), which presents a range of artistic approaches to ambiance production.


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mediums. This could be because there is something particularly affective about sound, which makes it a powerful tool to use in approaching the atmospheric design of cities. Urban sound design has a rich – if only recent – history, the common goal of which is to improve listening experiences – and therefore well-being – in our cities. As most do, I place its beginnings with R. Murray Schafer (1977), who was the first to propose the idea of an ‘acoustic designer’, a mixture of artist and scientist who could shape the soundscapes of urban places. It is by now well known that the limitations of Schafer’s approach were coded into its initial bias against urban noise. Shafer tried to overcome this problem by applying the term ‘soundscape’, which was meant to emphasize a more positive conversation about how the sounds of the city could be designed. However, his most enduring contribution to soundscape design has been the lo-fi/hi-fi concept: wanting to turn lo-fidelity soundscapes, where noises drowned out desirable signals, into hi-fi soundscapes that emphasize desirable sounds. This had, I think, the unintended effect of judging the sounds of a city without proper cultural, social or environmental analysis. I wrote about this in Sonic Rupture (2016), at the same time as Marie Thompson tackled the subject in Beyond Unwanted Sound (2017a) and Gascia Ouzounian wrote her ‘Editorial: Rethinking Acoustic Ecology’ (2017) for the journal Evental Aesthetics. While these three studies are divergent, collectively they suggest that the lo-fi/hi-fi concept should become a historical reference, remembered as an essential (if not flawed) part of the journey towards effective urban sound design. But this is in no way meant to diminish acoustic ecology or the work of the WSP (as I fear some seem to think) but, rather, is an attempt to make the practice of acoustic ecology (from my perspective at least) more relevant to contemporary urban environments. In a recent chapter I wrote for Michael Bull and Marcel Cobussen’s The Bloomsbury Handbook of Sonic Methodologies (Lacey 2020a), ‘Sound Installations for the Production of Atmosphere as a Limited Field of Sounds’, I pointed out that the famous sound artist Max Neuhaus was conducting listening walks and creating sound installations at the same time as Schafer and the World Soundscape Project (WSP) were doing their work. Without the backing of an academic institution, Max Neuhaus did not receive the accolades Schafer did; however, his work equally demonstrates how important artistic approaches are when designing urban soundscapes. Neuhaus apparently was more accepting of urban noise, and even actively encouraged participants of his ‘listening walks’ (as he called them) to tune into urban sounds without judgement. Furthermore,


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his installation works – in particular Times Square (1977–92; reinstalled 2002–) demonstrates how a sensitive and non-judgemental approach to urban noise can lead to sonic outcomes that produce augmented listening experiences. I remember encountering this work while in New York, an extraordinary and unexpected experience, in which the installation sounds seemed to lift my perception out of the dizzying atmosphere of Times Square into a place of calm and reflection. Of course, this was the experience for me, as I consciously tuned in to the thrum for twenty to thirty minutes. I also noted that most people were completely unaware of its existence, and uninterested if and when I pointed it out to them (when I was asked what I was doing with my recording equipment). While the members of the WSP are incredible artists themselves, continuing to create an array of powerful sound-based artworks, it seems to me that they missed an opportunity in characterizing noise as impoverishing to the human experience. Of course, noise is destructive and damaging to health – I’m not saying for a moment that it isn’t – but noises can also be aesthetically interesting and can make excellent design material for the creation of installation works, as Neuhaus’ rich oeuvre of sound works demonstrates. There are many artists who take a similarly affirmative approach to urban sound. Peter Cusack, who has worked with urban sound projects for many years (including the 2006 Positive Soundscape Project), edited and authored Berlin Sonic Places (2017). This arts-based study investigates responses to sound and noises in Berlin with a specific interest in people’s individual aural appreciation, presenting a complex understanding of the spatial and cultural dynamics of place. Bruce Odland and Sam Auinger (2009: 64) have also been working with urban sound for many years, together developing the notion of the ‘sonic commons’, which they define as ‘any space where many people share an acoustic environment and can hear the results of each other’s activities’. It is from this position – of the shared acoustic environment – that they explore and experiment with sound installations, including Harmonic Bridge, as described earlier (which I write about more extensively in Sonic Rupture 2016 and ‘Sonic Placemaking’ 2016). What is particularly interesting about Cusack’s work, and that of Odland and Auinger, is that they appear to use the city as a living laboratory: working in the field, garnering people’s impressions of sounds and how interventions might work to transform experiences. I consider their work to be a sophisticated enfolding of artistic research and ethnographic investigation. Years before these studies, in the mid-1970s, the WSP had investigated the changing soundscapes over time of five village soundscapes in Europe, a study continued by a group

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of Finnish researchers in 2009. These studies investigate the transitional nature of soundscapes in relationship to urbanization: the earlier study has a quality of lament that pins it, perhaps, to broader environmental narratives concerned about noise pollution, while the latter study adopts a culturally informed ethnographic model and provides a detailed account of community perceptions of sounds (Uimonen et al. 2009). Recently, Gascia Ouzounian was awarded a European Research Council grant for her project Sonorous Cities: Towards a Sonic Urbanism, which ‘extends work with architects and urban designers on issues of urban sound, in particular through her research group  Recomposing the City  and the organization  Theatrum Mundi’.11 Clearly, this project demonstrates that the relevance of practice to urban sound design is being taken very seriously. There are so many more artists and researchers whose work could and does inform urban sound design approaches – I encourage the reader to explore chapter 4 of Sonic Rupture for an overview of artists operating in this domain. Further to this, the reader is also encouraged to read Elen Flügge’s Sounding in Paths, Hearing through Cracks: Sonic Art Practices and Urban Institutions (2020), which provides a detailed description of urban design and sound art activities based in the Sonic Arts Research Centre (SARC) in Berlin. It would be useful to rewrite the history of soundscape design so that we can begin to entangle the work of the WSP (and its outgrowth, the World Forum for Acoustic Ecology (WFAE)) with the work of sound installation artists who have long been producing in parallel. A more affirmative discussion about the sounds of the city (noises and otherwise) could better inform the work of planners and designers, who are trying to tackle the murky issue of noise pollution in the modern city. There is a type of paralysis at play, because it is actually very difficult to remove unwanted sounds (noises). However, if, for example, creative methods of transformation were considered to be an effective approach to the design and planning of soundscapes, we might one day be listening to very different cities. Interestingly, as the arts and humanities diverge to communityfocused and practice-based approaches, engineering and acoustics academics/ practitioners have adopted what is being called the ‘soundscape approach’. This appears to be something of a victory in regard to Schafer’s work, but not from the perspective we would have imagined – it is the sciences that perpetuate the work See https​:/​/ww​​w​.mus​​ic​.ox​​.ac​.u​​k​/pro​​fesso​​r​-gas​​cia​-o​​uzoun​​ian​-a​​warde​​d​-eur​​opean​​-rese​​arch-​​counc​​il​ -fo​​r​-son​​orous​​-citi​​e​s​-to​​wards​​-a​-so​​nic​-u​​rbani​​sm/



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of the WSP even more so than the arts. At a recent INTER-NOISE Congress (Madrid 2019) I heard one of the leaders of this new approach, Brigitte SchulteFortkamp, exclaim ‘Perception first!’ It sounded like a maxim, and captures well the intent of those engineers, acousticians and planners who, rather than quantitatively measuring noise levels, are asking people how they feel about sound, and then building models from their discussions that can then be applied to urban planning. There are numerous people working in this area, including Catherine Guastavino (2007), Antonella Radicchi (2017), Jian Kang and Brigitte Schulte-Fortkamp (2016) and Francesco Aletta and Jieling Xiao (2018), all of whom are tackling the urban noise issue by prioritizing human perception above the certainties of measuring devices.12 Of course, how successful this approach will be is yet to be determined, but what is of interest here is that Schafer’s work (most of the academics and practitioners reference Schafer) has found new life in the sciences, even as some of his work endures critique in the arts and humanities. The question now is whether the practice-led and communityfocused approach of sound studies will integrate with these emerging trends in engineering and acoustics, to create a hybrid soundscape approach that is genuinely interdisciplinary and could support the emergence of new methods for urban soundscape design. I won’t pursue this point further here, but I do write about it in congress papers for INTER-NOISE 2019 (Madrid) and INTERNOISE 2020 (Korea), should the reader be interested to pursue this further. While sound study scholars are becoming less enamoured with the soundscape approach, atmospheric approaches are proliferating. For instance, Marcel Cobussen (2016) has been a leading advocate in directing practice-led sound scholars towards an atmospheric way of thinking for the purposes of urban sound design. In his inaugural professorial speech ‘(New) Sonic Ecologies’, he suggests that atmospheres might be an effective way to bridge the soundscape approach with creative practice approaches: According to Böhme, city planning can no longer be content with noise control and abatement but must pay attention to the character of its acoustic atmospheres. Central to sonic ecology, as well as Böhme’s emphasis on atmospheres, is the idea that auditory milieus can be managed, designed, and improved once they are given proper attention. And this attention should (also) come from the humanities, especially philosophy and the arts. (15) Indeed, we might detect here a drift towards an ambiance sensibility – by putting perception at the centre of the discussion and turning away from the cold, scientific certainty of collected ambient data.


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It makes sense that planning and the arts might use atmosphere as an effective bridge to begin an interdisciplinary conversation, given that atmospheric transformation is an obvious entry point for artists to assist planners in improving spatial qualities. This is, of course, very difficult to achieve, but one well mapped out by Cobussen and one I share in my own arguments for soundscape design in Sonic Rupture. When considering how we might intervene in atmospheres, though, we need to be careful to consider their existing qualities. In their book Atmospheres and the Experiential World: Theories and Methods, Shanti Sumartojo and Sarah Pink (2018: 96) share a similar enthusiasm for the role of artists and designers in intervening in atmospheres, while warning that ‘the terms upon which such a practice is carried out should be considered in such a way that accounts for the indeterminate, ongoingly changing and contingent nature of atmosphere’. This insight is important, as it reminds us that any installation or intervention should not be static, but, rather, move with the dynamism of atmospheres, augmenting or supressing or translating (as the case may be) expressions and qualities as they are discovered. Therefore, atmosphere design must acknowledge the existing turbulence of the mediums we perceive, and any intervention must be able to move with these perturbations. This book shares these desires to transform the urban environment through practice. It wants to do so by investigating the processes of idiosyncratic artistic research and how subjectively driven, practice-based methodologies might be applied to recreate our cities. Artists are explorers, always searching for the new and reimagining the present. And it is the reimagining of our cities that has become so critical, especially now that we have entered the geological age of the Anthropocene. This term, popularized by atmospheric scientist Paul Crutzen in 2000, determines that human activities have become so impactful that they are shaping the very geological record of the earth. The engines driving this change are, of course, our cities, which demand so many resources and produce so much pollution that the entire planet has been bent to their will. Urban transformation, therefore, is not just a matter of improving well-being for humans, it is also about participating in the broader project of changing the nature of being human, such that our relationship with the planet shifts. This is in keeping with the scholarship of posthumanism which seeks new ways to be human in this world by eschewing the traditional values and common notions of the white, Enlightenment male (to paraphrase Rosi Braidotti). Such a programme would aim to transform the ecologies of cities in three ways: first, by better respecting the needs of other species; second, by transforming our


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relationships with one another and the world around us; and third, by considering our imaginative relationships with immaterial forces. This is, of course, a collective project, and my small contribution to this discussion evolves through my sound studies discourse. My exploration of synchronistic thinking is especially interested in connecting with Indigenous scholarship including Yunkaporta (2019) and Pascoe (2014), among others, so that we might learn methods for revitalizing our relationship with the intensive real (or the desiring-body Earth). This is not about cultural appropriation, but about learning from First Nations people how we might rediscover those nurturing relationships that encourage us to respectfully inhabit the world and invest in its becomings rather than exploiting it. To engage with the intensive real is not, as Guattari warned, a romantic back-to-earth fantasy; it is not frightened of technology and certainly not of cultural transformation; rather, such engagement acknowledges Indigenous knowledge for its ability to connect equally with desire and materiality, and to use ritual and ceremony to forge new relationships between people and land. The artistic research I call for in this book wants to explore ways to rediscover such connections.

Final remarks, Part 2 I detect three ways of applying and/or thinking about synchronicity phenomenon in sound studies, which are built from my examples related to Cage, Voegelin, Augoyard and Torgue, and Oliveros (as we shall see in a moment): (1) Chance-based techniques can be applied as a creative tool for designing environments that produce unpredictable experiences. (2) Synchronicity provides context to understand the uniquely and deeply subjective nature of individual listening experiences. (3) As a knowledge-type, synchronicity acknowledges intuitive ways of knowing that exist beyond our civilization’s dominant techno-semiotic paradigm. Synchronicity is a oneness of experience that is powerful, unrepeatable and deeply personal. It is associated with a powerful surge, a rush of desire that momentarily connects our consciousness with pre-personal affect. The challenge for urban designers is this: Can we possibly create spaces that provide such surges of intensity, opening portals between the pre-personal and the personal? Well, as

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we have seen in this chapter, it is not actually possible to design such experiences, but we can design techniques that allow for the possibility of such experiences. This is similar to the concept of the sonic rupture, which I never intended to be a specific experience that was designed, but, rather, as a way to clear a space for experiential openings, whereby the listener could discover that which lies beneath the common sonic experiences of everyday life. To repeat, the role of the artist here is not to design this experience, but to create the space in which this experience might emerge. I do believe that artists are able to bring these flows to attention via their skilful translation and transformation of materials, an act which simultaneously activates the psyche. We know this as people can leave an artwork feeling refreshed or invigorated or moved in some way. This is not just because of an aesthetic appreciation of material configurations, but a movement of the psyche; in some way an opening appears, a rupture, time stands still and the synchronistic emerges to reveal, for a moment, those flows of eternity typically hidden from conscious perception. I will finish this part of the book by turning to deep listening advocate Pauline Oliveros, whose listening exercises deliberately try to open us to more profound ways of experiencing the real. Oliveros (2005: xvi) describes deep listening as an ‘altered state of consciousness in performance (that) is exhilarating and inspiring’ and states that when playing music: ‘The music comes through as if I have nothing to do with it, but to allow it to emerge through my instrument and voice. It is even more exciting to practice, whether I am performing or just living out my daily life.’ I don’t want to put words into Oliveros’s mouth here, but when I read this, I hear the flow of desire that interconnects the assemblage of player–instrument–space–audience; the joy that comes through this sentence is surely the amplification of desire that Guattari speaks of, the sound as line of flight revealing new Universes of Value (shifts of consciousness). It is this that the sound designer would hope to achieve in public space. There is an exercise in Oliveros’ book Deep Listening called ‘Four Modes of Thought’, in which the composer asks participants to sit in a circle and to note four modes of sharing experiences, called Sensation, Feeling, Thinking, Intuition.13 I note, without I need to acknowledge I do not have a Deep Listening certificate and, thus, I am not well versed in what Oliveros might have been trying to achieve with this exercise; however, I have experienced deep listening activities with the voice artist Viv Corringham at the First International Conference of Mexican Acoustic Ecology Network (2019). Corringham took a group of us through a series of listening exercises the end result of which was a room full of strangers, talking comfortably and sharing experiences. Not unlike how I feel after jamming with a group of musicians, it’s all in the listening, I thought.



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going into Oliveros’s definition of the four modes of experience, that the main point of the exercise is to encourage people to listen to one another, and consider the type of communication to which they are listening. Oliveros writes, ‘as you notice these [four] modes of thinking in your daily life, note what mode is more predominant for you; or notice is there some kind of balance between modes. Also try to shift from one mode to another in relation to your listening’ (21). All of the intention is on listening, with mindful attention paid to the others within the listening circle. Oliveros attributes this exercise to a model put forth by Jung. The model is based on a personality typology that Jung organized into a cross-like pattern, with each term (Sensation, Feeling, Thinking, Intuition) placed upon the end of one of two axes. For Jung, these four poles identified the quadrants of a mandala, which for Jung is an archetypal image that refers to a wholeness of the personality – that is, an individuated personality that has integrated all four typological modes. It is interesting that in this exercise Oliveros asks her participants to arrange themselves in a circle, the key geometrical form of a mandala. Indeed, Oliveros had a deep and abiding interest in mandalas, which formed the material for many of her performances and experimental notations (2015: 222–59). It seems that Oliveros is setting up the conditions for synchronistic encounter by encouraging listening bodies to connect with new experiences; as such, collectively, the participants become mandalas in their listening/sharing, creating an experiential opening made up of a field of listening bodies. It is an example of how we can design for synchronicity, without trying to create the synchronistic experience itself. In this case, Oliveros subtly evokes an archetypal image without directly naming it, and then provides guidance within a shared space wherein unique experiences might emerge. There is something ritualistic about this action, an attempt to connect listeners with something deeper than what might be perceived in an everyday situation. Inspired by Oliveros’ exercise, and Jung’s mandala, I am presently working on a project that combines circular seating with planter boxes and ambisonic soundscape playback, to create a sound art installation called the Sonic Gathering Space (SGS)14 that will assist urban designers in reimagining the possibilities of urban furniture. The circular seat-like structure, designed in the form of a mandala with four quadrants, contains living native Australian plants and multiple ambisonic soundscape recordings of four national parks in see: https://jordan-lacey.com/project/translating-ambiance?index=sonic-gathering-space.


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Victoria, Australia (Terrick Terrick grasslands, Otways rainforest and oceans, Alpine snowfields, French Island mangroves and wetlands). The recordings will play back through an outdoor four-speaker audio system, with the sounds at any one time having a relationship to at least one of the groups of plant species. There will be no specific exercise as per Oliveros’s techniques, but it is hoped that the circular nature of the object and the immersion within the plants and sounds from the four national parks will create meaningful experiences for visitors to the installation. The project is not attempting to design synchronicity experiences, but, rather, will apply the techniques and atmospheric approaches discussed earlier, holding the dream of the possibility of synchronistic encounters. The reader will find documentation of this project on my website, jordan​-lacey​.c​om (see footnote 14). I now turn to the final part of this book, which presents a gallery-based experiment in which a group of artists were asked to assist in revealing autonomous affectivities via a collective artistic method that included fieldwork, gallery installation and ethnographic reflection.


Part 3

Translating ambiances

Introduction The third and final part of this book presents an artistic research process that explores the possibility of translating felt affects from one environment into another environment, with the intention of activating wild autonomous affectivities in our cities. As such, it takes the theory of the first two parts of this book (Parts 1 and 2) and puts it to work. The process involved my inviting twelve sound artists (including me) translating their fieldwork experiences into nine sound art installations housed in a gallery environment. I have elsewhere called this process ‘translating ambiance’ (Lacey 2020b; 2020c). Following this, each artist was asked to participate in an ethnographic process, through which I discovered three categories of experience and eight urban design sketches. Each of the steps, along with a summary of the data, is included in Figure 5. The project tested the ways in which practising artists – who have developed their own unique, even idiosyncratic, practices – are able to generate an affective experience in others, via acts of creation, that translate affects they experienced in wild places. To speak of the wild is to speak of those more-thanhuman forces (autonomous affectivities) that circulate through the desiringbody Earth and are experienced during moments of synchronicity. ‘Wild’ is a purposefully ambivalent and non-representational term that can hold those evocative feelings between body and land, and it is these forces of nature that the artist seeks to activate in the city. Or, put another way, the project was developed to test a methodology (summarized in Figure 5) by which felt affects might flow from artistic practices into urban development programmes, with the ambition that the typically concealed (or latent) autonomous affectivities of our cities might be activated. The process ends with the formation of eight design sketches, which, as sketches, are intended to be open, flexible and accessible. Their application need not be complex, nor the methods opaque. Their actual

Figure 5  A summary of the artistic research process and categories of experience.

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manifestation could be as simple as gently modifying existing infrastructures, or as complex as creating vast urban forests where varieties of affective atmospheres are encountered. Before continuing, I will briefly contextualize the theory discussed in this book in relation to the applied research that follows.

Activating autonomous affectivities I want to briefly comment on the relationship between the transversal autonomous affectivities of the desiring-body Earth, and their manifestation as felt affects experienced both in the wild and in the gallery. Autonomous affectivities are pre-personal and felt affects are personal. I am arguing that when an artist in a wild place feels something meaningful (for instance, an encounter or event of apparent significance) in relation to the environment, it is not only their body which is affected by the expressions of the environment but also their psyche that has been activated by the intensive charge of an autonomous affectivity (as diagrammed in Figure 4). As discussed in earlier sections of this book, most bodily affects don’t even register in our conscious awareness, despite the fact that our bodies feel affects all the time as we go about our daily activities. But if the affect is powerful enough that it comes to the mind’s awareness as a sudden charge of intensity, then we can say that both a felt affect and an emergent, pre-personal autonomous affectivity have occurred simultaneously. In the case of artistic fieldwork, such synchronicity needn’t be experienced only as the emergence of coincidental events. It may, for example, manifest as an uncanny feeling of a morethan-human presence, or perhaps an encounter that is impossible to explain or interpret, or even the sense that a specific moment has purposefully configured itself in relationship to the artist’s presence – it is these irruptions of irrational experience that come to influence the artist’s final artwork. (At least, that is the idea that drove this project’s design). So, a translated affect is a result of the artist recreating their field-based experiences into a new installation, which is then felt by others. That the same autonomous affectivity is said to charge experience in the wild and in the gallery should not be surprising, given that autonomous affectivities are trans-spatial and trans-temporal. Thus, an affect is said to be charged by a common autonomous affectivity, even though it may be experienced differently in its original location and in the place to which it has been translated. This is why I insist on the neologism ‘desiring-body Earth’, because autonomous affectivities


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– given their trans-spatial and trans-temporal nature – are thought to inhabit the whole of the planet, simultaneously. Whenever they are drawn into a specific (spatiotemporal) situation, their emotional charge will present uniquely to that situation; however, the pre-personal driver of the felt affect is always everywhere present. In cities, these autonomous affectivities are difficult to apprehend as felt affects, because the system of signs that defines urban life almost entirely occupies our attention (as argued in Part 1). The aim of artistic practice, as presented here, is to rupture this system of signs to reveal unique and/or distinct sensations/feeling/ experience to the audience/visitor/other. In keeping with this, when I refer to ‘affects’ in Part 3, I am referring to the immediate sensations we feel, and when I refer to ‘autonomous affectivities’, I am referring to the pre-personal intensive forces of the desiring-body Earth, which manifest simultaneously through the activated psyche and worldly becomings. I will now turn to defining ‘ambiance’ and ‘translation’ as they were applied to this artistic research project.

Ambiance as applied to the research project As an urban design provocation, the translating ambiance method eschews the codified approaches of urban planning by using ambiance theory and its prioritization of perception in the consideration of the design of public urban spaces. The spelling of ‘ambiance’ is purposeful. As discussed in Part 2 (pages 93–96), this term describes an approach to sound design that has a greater focus on ethnography, fieldwork and first-person experiential accounts than the ‘ambience’ or ‘atmosphere’ approaches. This makes it a powerful tool for artistic and design research, as rather than using codified methods that lead to homogenous replication, ambiance opens up the possibility of the oneness of experience as the source of creation. In keeping with the preference in ambiance theory for firstperson accounts, the project engages with sensory ethnographic techniques that encourage us to understand experience via the senses (Pink 2015). As will be described later, an ethnographic method was applied as a means to understand which affects were translated into the gallery setting, the analysis of which went on to inform the final design sketches. Of particular interest is what I will call ‘sonic ethnography’. Sonic ethnography’s two most well-known precedents include the pioneering work of Steven Feld (1996), who used sound recordings to translate the lives of Papua New Guinea’s Bosavi people onto CD, and The World Soundscape Project, which used field recordings and listening practices to bring attention to

Translating Ambiances


and improve sonic environments across Canada and Europe (Torigoe 1982). More recently, in separate ethnography studies, Sarah Pink (2015) and Tom O’Dell and Robert Willim (2013) have argued that sound and sound technologies provide new ways of approaching sensory ethnography practices as a means for the practitioner to engage more effectively with the immediate experience of those making their reflections of a given situation. It is the collective insights of these studies that are incorporated into the ethnographic method described later.

Translation as applied to the research project The practice of translation, in short, proposes that the affects felt in one environment can be transported via the body into other environments. This idea has been gleaned from a variety of sources, with the work of art critic and curator Nicolas Bourriaud (2009) being of particular interest. In his book The Radicant he suggests that artistic practice is critical in a globalized world, as its capacity to translate across codes (language, cultural, stylistic, etc.) encourages a diversity of experiences, understandings and relationships that can challenge the increasingly homogeneous conditions created by globalization.1 He writes that today’s art ‘refers to movement, to the dynamism of forms, and characterises reality as a conglomeration of transitory surfaces and form that are potentially moveable’ (79; my italics). Bourriaud’s argument presents a very interesting way to consider the terms ‘urban’ and ‘natural’ as codes, particularly if we apply his thoughts about codes in a Guattarian sense (and he is greatly influenced by Guattari). As discussed in Part 1, Guattari brings our attention to the way capitalism is able to trap us in a cycle of deterritorialization and reterritorialization by keeping our desire focused on the plane of content, where the signifier reigns supreme. Signifiers can be considered as codes (symbols, learnings, axioms, etc.) that govern or control our mental apprehension of the real. The manner in which we divide the world up Bourriaud’s (2009) The Radicant is actually an argument for what he calls an ‘altermodernity’, which, following postmodernity, presents a diversifying alternative to the homogenizing tendencies of globalization. He argues that if postmodernity fractured the unitary dream of modernity into archipelagos of otherness, then the move towards altermodernity is characterized by processes of translation across these codes that create a new (alternative) version of modernity. Bourriaud’s altermodernity project, it seems, is to search for a new type of unity across diversity: ‘translation always implies adapting the meaning of a proposition, enabling it to pass from one code to another’ (135). The problem with Bourriaud’s approach, in my view, is that it wants to skim across the surfaces of diversity – it does not want to drop into the depths. As such, his new modernity may be every bit as shallow as the modernity we left behind. Nevertheless, by presenting the world as codes, he provides us with a powerful tool for conceptualizing and practising transformative artistic practices.



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into urban and natural environments is, in fact, highly codified, and dependent on the dominant system of power. By way of example (admittedly with a broad brushstroke), in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries during the Industrial Revolution, nature was little more than a resource for extraction and transformation into commodities, which became the basis of a Marxist power struggle to control the means of production; but since the mid-twentieth century, with the advent of the Green Revolution (and following its genealogy of Romanticism), parcels of land called nature have been locked away and come to signify places of sanctuary that tend to our emotional and spiritual needs. Equally, the urban changes its meaning. The walled cities of medieval towns provided populations with a central point for commerce and protection at times of war, while today concentrated webs of internationalized banks, finance industries and digital infrastructures have created a globalized urban milieu that exists primarily for the production of capital, efficiency and consumption. However, our beliefs and ideas of urban or natural landscapes as determined by dominant power structures do not necessarily match our bodily relationships with the land. The coded ways in which we are taught to know the world and the actual ways in which we feel the world can be different, and it is within these contradictory forces that the artist can play. Translating codes has the potential to catalyse lines of flight, whereby the imagination departs from the fixed codifications of the everyday by sudden exposure to alternative environments (such as those generated by sound installations). That is, the intensive real, the ground beneath our feet – the plane of expression – affects our body such that our relationship with the world is transformed (see Guattari’s comments on the potential of new Universes of Value to emerge via the redistribution and the amplification of desire, as discussed in Part 1, page 32). The artist can take with them affects experienced in wild nature (or wilderness) and recreate them in the urban environment, and in so doing give themself and others the chance to engage with new environments that subvert the norms of urban planning. The ambition here is to realize new Universes of Value that do not represent the typical organization of day-to-day life, but open our experience, if only for a moment, towards other ways of being in and with the world. For instance, a planning or building code will determine exactly how an urban space should be fabricated. It becomes the scourge of creativity because it openly (and successfully) fights against idiosyncrasies and perturbations that might differ from the norm. So, how to circumnavigate this almost impossible conundrum? Artists, I am arguing, can recode urban spaces by translating wild affects that are able to infiltrate and disassemble codifications. To achieve this the

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artist is asked to carefully consider how the wild places have affected them, and how this influenced their documentation decisions, in regard to field recordings, personal reflections, other media and so on. Then, in applying this documentation, the idea is that the initial felt affects that inspired the artist’s activities are translated and reassembled in an urban context. It is this process that was carried out in the research project, in the hope of discovering a methodology by which translated affects – as distilled into design sketches – could contribute to the transformation of city spaces. The benefit of following Bourriaud’s insights is that they suggest a tangential path for the design of urban spaces that is typically difficult to imagine, because the political, social and cultural codifications that demand uniformity and predictability are omnipotent and omnipresent. Artistic practices can generate lines of flight that disassemble and reassemble these codes, to evoke bodily responses that challenge those banalities and redundancies typical of the urban environment.

Connecting with biophilic design practices There is already an urban design movement that is having some successes in achieving these urban transformations. Called ‘biophilic design’, it claims to ‘address the deficiencies of contemporary building and landscape practice by establishing a new framework for the satisfying experience of nature in the built environment’ (Kellert and Calabrese 2015: 6). To summarize, it is the ambition of biophilic design to introduce nature into cities to improve human wellbeing. The danger of this approach is that it risks being reduced to the banal, by becoming integrated into the dictatorial system of signs that governs urban space. For instance, the production of healthy atmospheres that have the aim of creating more obedient workers and consumers could see the production of clean and manicured ‘pocket parks’ that evoke nothing more than pleasantries – a type of environmental sedative that mirrors the internal effects of opioidpharmaceuticals. Of course, nature, capable of wild turbulence (storms and wildfires) and moral ambivalence (falling tree branches and snake bites), can be anything but pleasant. This is not intended to be cynical; certainly, the efforts of biophilic designers have resulted in urban greening programmes and new building designs (Hartig 2004; Kellert, Heerwagen and Mador 2008; Maller, HendersonWilson and Townsend 2009; Benfield et al. 2014) that should be celebrated; it simply points out the danger that biophilic design risks being reduced to a sedative, every bit as reductive as the numbing effects of Mood Media.


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And so, I offer here the provocation that if biophilic design could be prised open and infected by artistic processes, we would find that it is not only the stuff of nature that gets translated into our cities but also the felt affects experienced in the wild places of the planet, also known as the expressions of the desiring-body Earth. To be clear, the wild, as understood here, is not a term that is intended to act in opposition to human habitation. For instance, the Aboriginal people of Australia carefully managed the land over thousands of years; however, they also knew, through the embodied practices of ritual and ceremony, that attending to the intensive forces (or spirits) of the land was of equal importance as its material management (for further discussion, see Yunkaporta 2019: 22, 51). Confusion about the term ‘wild’ (or wilderness) is reflected in the issue of how to manage Australia’s bushlands. For instance, prior to European arrival the Australian bush was carefully managed by Indigenous people with the use of controlled burnings. Consequently, much of the Australian bushland was more like an open woodland. These areas were clear-felled by Europeans, and many have since been replaced by dense (and unmanaged) forests. It is now being debated if the terrible bushfires in Australia in 2019–20 were a consequence of this lack of management (as well as being exacerbated by climate change, drought, fuel load, etc.). It is an extraordinary act of colonial arrogance that Australians still do not turn to First Nations people for advice on land management – though this is slowly changing.2 The point being that to connect with the wild is not to turn our backs on society or management practices, but, rather, to discover methods by which we interweave our bodies with the earth-body, something exceedingly difficult to achieve in the age of technosemiological domination (as discussed in Part 1). Of course, this call to connect with the wild is nothing new. Sound artists who practise field recording have been doing this for longer than the term ‘biophilia’ has existed. Edward O. Wilson coined the term in 1984, as ‘the inherent human inclination to affiliate with nature that even in the modern world continues to be critical to people’s physical and mental health and well-being’ (Wilson 1984; Kellert and Calabrese 2015). The connections with acoustic ecology should be quite obvious here, which also determines natural sound to be essential for our well-being. Indeed, Edward Wilson himself wrote a private email praising Bernie Krause’s ‘niche hypothesis’ (Krause 1987),3 using spectrograms to show that different species adjust their vocalizations so as to share various bandwidths See, for instance, https​:/​/ww​​w​.abc​​.net.​​au​/ne​​ws​/20​​20​-01​​-09​/I​​ndige​​nous-​​cultu​​ral​-f​​i re​-b​​urnin​​g​-met​​ hod​-h​​as​-be​​nefit​​​s​-exp​​erts-​​say​/1​​18530​​96. 3 A reference to this comment can be found on Krause’s website: https://www​.wildsanctuary​.com. 2

Translating Ambiances


within the frequency spectrum. Wilson called it the ‘real thing’, presumably an affirmation of its scientific applicability. This is a standout example of the ways in which ecologists, artists and designers have already, and for a long time, been translating field documentation into media forms (typically, recordings and/or sound installations), the outcomes of which could easily be applied to biophilic design. The simplest way to think about how sound artists could augment biophilic design approaches is to imagine them directly translating field recordings of wilderness areas into urban spaces. While possible, this is only a very simple example. The artistic research project discussed here will explore more complicated ways to approach such translations. This is also an invitation to biophilic designers to discover ways that affectivities might flow into the final stages of their urban development programmes, increasing the range of possible experiences for the end users. Recent biophilic design researchers have identified fourteen patterns in nature that they divide into three categories – spatial, analogous and expressive (Browning, Ryan and Clancy 2014; see later). Later in Part 3 these patterns will be applied to the overall analysis to demonstrate ways that artistic research can be linked with biophilic design. I hope that, at minimum, this presents a pathway for further experimentation.

Towards an artistic research methodology A final note: at the heart of this project is the application of artistic research as an open-ended experimental process that may reveal new methods for creative urban sound design. What we need are creative methodologies that lead to diverse environments, and are able to effect creative becomings in city inhabitants. In particular, we need artistic research approaches that foreground the importance of the oneness of experience in the processes of creation, so that we can begin to challenge the dictatorial and codified approaches to the design and management of the urban environment. By way of example, more than once I have been challenged by an engineer or planner who asks me, ‘What are your criteria?’ They seem to be perturbed by the thought that artistic research might present a process that does not clearly identify exactly what they are going to get, before they get it. Criteria give predictable outcomes, which makes them feel comfortable, as there is no danger involved. In another encounter I spoke to a building inspector in a local government who was of the belief that the development of building codes was a product of urban evolution, that our accumulated

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knowledge from past mistakes had delivered building standards that assured everyone’s safety and comfort. The fact that the new suburbs all look exactly the same, and were creating a homogenized landscape was of no concern to him at all – because he knew what he was getting, and that made him comfortable. With the exception of the privileged few, who can employ an architect to provide them an idiosyncratic design suited to self and place, the rest of us are stuck with what the codes churn out, what Rem Koolhaas (2002) has referred to as ‘Junkspace’. How can we possibly challenge this awful situation? I propose that if we can’t defeat the technocratic paradigm and its officiating bodies then we have little choice but to try and transform the spaces within which we are forced to live. This starts with acknowledging that codes are presented as inevitable truths. As discussed in Part 1, they gain an authoritative and deterministic forcefulness that Guattari rightly called the dictatorship of the signifier. We need to work against the logic that presents as inevitable the reduction of our lived space to self-replicating codes (building codes, planning codes, educational codes, etc.) that cause the production of banal landscapes. What we need to discover are creative approaches that are able to challenge the nullifying effects of these landscapes. Let’s now turn to the discussion of the experimental research project, which sought to do exactly that.

The Translating Ambiance Research Project The research participants The sound artists were selected based on how tightly their existing body of work aligned with the brief ’s call for participants with recognized listening, field recording and exhibition practices. The initial fieldwork stage of the project would rely heavily on these experts’ ability to not only perform their art but also observe and study their performance and that of others. The selected artists were Lisa Hall and Salomé Voegelin (And It Tastes Like Hair), Martin Kay (Aquatic Centre), Byron Dean and Polly Stanton (Emergent Fields), Catherine Clover (Guyup-Guyup: Scores for Eight Songbirds 2019), Camilla Hannan (Contagion), Jordan Lacey and Remi freer (COLD), Michael Graeve (Rendered Imperfectly Rendered), Andrew Goodman (Gut Feelings) and Bruce Mowson Bodies (listening to conversations between trees). All works were produced in 2019.4 The initial fieldwork stage relied All of the artists, except Hall, Voegelin and Goodman had past or present affiliations with sound art programmes at RMIT University, Melbourne.


Translating Ambiances


on the artists tuning into their own bodily presence while practising in a variety of environments (ordered to match the aforementioned list): English bramble bushes, an urban swimming pool, a remote wind farm, Melbourne songbird habitats, rural environment, Alpine highland country, regional environment, transitional spaces (journeying from countryside to city) and an urban forest. Each of these fieldwork locations became the site of idiosyncratic investigations, the collective affectivities of which would flow into the gallery environment. An immediate challenge presented is that, with a few exceptions, the list hardly met the criteria of the wilderness spaces that I was hoping for. However, each space that the artists engaged with did include natural sounds in some way, though they were mostly integrated with the sounds of the urban (traffic, hums, drones, etc.). Upon reflection I don’t see this as an impediment to the research, given that translation into the gallery environment did occur; however, a future and more robust iteration of this experiment would aim to bind artists to a specific environment.5 There was a remarkable degree of cooperation involved in this exhibition, insofar as each of the artists stuck to the brief and the ethnographic methodology; however, I knew from the beginning that there was no way I was going to be able to control the environments with which the artists engaged, and given the collective intelligence of a group who were bound to challenge the urban–nature distinction, I was unsurprised that a mixture of what might be called ‘urban-natures’ were selected. Only one of the works, which translated the ambiance of an urban swimming pool, was excluded from the data, as it was found to be too divergent from the project’s aims (more on this later).

The brief In the first stage of the project, the artists were asked to perform five tasks: (1) conduct sonic fieldwork; (2) tune in to and observe their bodily experience of that fieldwork; (3) notice their responses and reactions to the field as they work; T h is would require artist commissions for remote travel, which I was unable to afford in this instantiation of the research. At any rate, this was an inevitable outcome from a group of established field-recording artists who were well versed in challenging any ideas of an urban/nature distinction. As Philip Samartzis notes in his essay for the exhibition, ‘most of the Australian artists in this exhibition are graduates of art at RMIT University. Sound has occupied a liminal position within the school since it was introduced into the fine art program in the late 1970s. While staff and students come and go, a spirit of independence, of being outsiders within the system remains’ (see www​ .translating​-ambiance​.com).



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(4) channel these reflections into a gallery environment; and (5) create a gallery-based sound art installation. The notion of ambiance, crucial to this methodology, was new to most of the cohort. It was explained as the embodied feelings and moods experienced in a space. Sound artists who apply field-recording techniques to their practices (whether they be urban installations, media playback or other outcomes) are already engaged with ambiance and atmosphere and, as such, were assumed to be well suited to the ambitions of the brief. The artists were explicitly told that the broader research aim was to articulate a methodology that enables practitioners to ‘translate the ambiance’ of a wilderness environment into an urban environment, as a means of contributing authentic sense data to designs for restorative urban settings (in line with the ambitions of biophilic design). The artists in the cohort were asked to consider how their bodies were affected by the environment during field recording, and how those affects might influence the decisions that would shape their gallery installation. The notion of translation provoked the artists to reflect on techniques, methods or tools that, through their individual practice, would reveal the ambiance of one (wilderness) place through the (re)shaping of another (urban) place. The following prompts were provided prior to the fieldwork: (1) How does the body feel and know? (2) What is an ambiance if we focus on the body and not the environment? (3) Can a body evoke the same ambiance in vastly different environments – say a rainforest and a laneway? (4) How do these reflections undo/challenge concepts of the divide between urban and natural environments? The artists were also informed about an early curatorial decision: their works would not be isolated from one another when exhibited. Instead, the sonic expressions of each work would be part of a collective voice throughout the gallery. Curating a sound art gallery exhibition is a complex issue, given that galleries are historically dependent on the visual, and the interference between adjacent sound works is unavoidable (van Eyk 2018; Kelly 2017). The alternatives, as I saw them, were to encase each work in a small, soundproof chamber, or to work with the relational nature of sound, which is both invasive and interconnecting. This exhibition chose the latter; the artists were asked to be sensitive to this relationality

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while creating their works, and were told outright that the pieces might require curatorial ‘tuning’. This elicited some tensions, but the overall outcome was a well-balanced exhibition in which all nine works created a unique soundscape that came to be the collective voice of the exhibition.6

The artworks Common to each artwork was a media/sculptural form that invited the audience to listen. All but two of the artworks (Clover, Mowson) used field-recording and audio-playback techniques. All of the works used visual prompts to present concepts and affective experiences, using various mediums, including screens (Dean/Stanton, Goodman), painting and prints (Graeve, Clover, Hall/Voegelin), sculpture (Lacey, Hall/Voegelin, Kay) and textiles (Mowson). This variety of materials ensured a multisensory exhibition that was not focused solely on audio playback; in fact, I detected a total of seven ambient mediums in the final gallery exhibition as expressed by the artworks: sound, light, texture, smell, text, motion and rhythm. Table 1 includes a brief description of each of the artworks, and the ambient expressions related to those artworks. As mentioned, data from Martin Kay’s work was omitted because it seemed too divergent from the brief ’s instruction to translate affects from a natural space into an urban space (which was no fault of Kay’s but more to do with my own curatorial oversight – at first, I liked the idea of translating an urban space that was already a translation of a ‘natural pool’). However, Kay’s piece was as effective as the other works in contributing to the collective gallery soundscape, so it is included in Table 1, and his reflections as a research participant are included in the ethnographic data. Extensive descriptions and documentation of each work by the artists can be found in the online catalogue (www​.translating​ -ambiance​.com). Rather than repeating the descriptions here, I encourage the reader to investigate the online catalogue before proceeding (see footnote 6 for link). By clicking on each artwork, a full-screen colour image appears. There is also a video walk-through embedded in the right column of the website, and the floating dots link to audio that provides a sense of the collective sonic atmosphere generated by the exhibition. T h is feature of the exhibition can be heard at the exhibition website: http://translating​-ambiance​ .com. Each of the floating dots, when clicked, plays back a field recording from a corresponding location in the gallery.


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Table 1  Artworks with Medium Descriptions and Ambient Expressions Ambient expression


Artwork title

Medium description

Lisa Hall and Salomé Voegelin

And It Tastes Like Hair

stereo speakers, eight headphones, scaffolding boards, hooks, fittings

texture, text, smell, sound

Martin Kay

Aquatic Centre

Sound, water, light, glass, chlorine

light, smell, sound

Byron Dean and Polly Stanton

Emergent Fields

4K video, stereo sound, projector, seating, darkened room, Duration: 19 minutes

light, sound

Catherine Clover

Guyup-Guyup: Scores for Eight Songbirds

8 unframed digital prints on text, rhythm paper (each 84.1 × 54.1 cm) and vocal performance

Camilla Hannan


Quadrophonic sound, subwoofer, cornflour, dimensions variable

Jordan Lacey and Remi freer


4 air-con shells with embedded light, sound speakers networked to computer system, lighting and interactive voltage

Michael Graeve

Rendered Imperfectly Rendered

4-channel sound; paintings (oil on linen); chairs; live microphone feed

text, sound

Andrew Goodman

Gut Feelings

digital video and sound loop, transducer, Perspex, headphones. Duration: 24 minutes

texture, sound

Bruce Mowson

Bodies (listening to conversation between trees)

3 suspended body bags – petrochemical and plant fibres, iron and carbon alloy. Dimensions variable

motion, texture, rhythm

motion, texture, sound

Ethnography development In total, ten of the artists (Salomé Voegelin was situated overseas at the time of the exhibition, and Remi freer was an Honours student providing technical

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support for my work COLD) completed ethnographic reflections for each of the exhibited pieces. The artists did not provide ethnographic reflections of their own work. Bear in mind that the intention behind the ethnographic component was to reveal common affects, as experienced by the panel members in the gallery. The artist participants (including me) came together over two workshops to determine how an ethnography might be applied. Both workshops were intended to ensure that all participating artists were approaching the exercise in a similar manner, so as to assist in the discovery of more robust and consistent outcomes.

Workshop 1 The first workshop explored the process of translating and indexing affects. This was rooted in a discussion of Sarah Pink’s Sensory Ethnography (2015: 143), particularly her method of foregrounding the senses as a means of producing knowledge: Analysis may be situated spatially or temporally away from the site(s) and moments of ethnographic field work. . . . Research materials can be used as prompts that help to evoke the memories and imaginations of the research, thus enabling us to re-encounter the sensorial and the emotional reality of research situations.

I will clarify this passage in relation to the instructions the artists were given. First, the analysis that took place ‘away from the sites of ethnographic fieldwork’ refers to the field trips conducted by each artist as they collected raw data via field recordings, videos and so on. Second, ‘research materials’ correspond to the gallery-based installations, which were based on the ‘memories and imaginations’ connected with the fieldwork. Third, the ‘re-encountering of research situations’ relates to the artists’ ethnographic reflections on the affective environments created by each gallery-based installation. It was explained to the artists that the entire process involved the artists drawing autonomous affectivities into the gallery through works that elicited felt affects in the viewer/listener, a translation of affect that was revealed via the ethnographic reflections of the artists (on all works other than their own).

Workshop 2 The second workshop explored guidelines for completing the gallery-based ethnographic reflections. We took our lead from Kathleen Stewart’s Ordinary


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Affects (2007) and Lauren Berlant and Kathleen Stewart’s The Hundreds (2019).7 Stewart (2007: 2) explains that ‘ordinary affects are the varied, surging capacities to affect and to be affected that give everyday life the quality of a continual motion of relations, scenes, contingencies, and emergences’. It was explained that it was the relations between the artists and the fieldwork environment that flows into the gallery; that is, how they artists were affected by the natural environment translates into audience experiences of the works, within the gallery. It is these experiences that were documented through the ethnographic responses of the research participants. In The Hundreds, a series of writers ‘make’ a response to the ‘impact of things’, including events, atmospheres and encounters, in multiples of a hundred words (ix–x). The entries are fragments that convey the immediacy of experience of any given moment. This approach to rendering the everyday poetically has the effect of revealing those affectivities typically hidden from the everyday context. During the workshop we discussed that via concentrated, intentional listening, affects typically existing beneath the threshold of perception might be revealed. It was decided, in keeping with The Hundreds, that artists would provide a short, immediate vignette of the impact of each artwork, so that any affects that had been translated might be both revealed and articulated. The artists’ responses were recorded straight into a Zoom H6 handheld microphone, which enabled them to produce more direct responses to each work’s affective impact than might have emerged from a questionnaire or interview. Finally, for the purposes of discovering patterns, the participants were informed that each recording would be transcribed and anonymized, making it easier for me to identify any continuities across the artists’ responses.

Response data Following are the exact instructions given to the artists as they were handed a microphone to complete their ethnographies. The artists completed their ethnography individually (though other visitors may have been present in the gallery at the same time): Spend 1–2 minutes with each work: For each artwork, record 1 minute of audio. Be instinctual. Don’t complicate the response. The immediacy of the affective response has meaning, given the knowledge and experience of the body. I am deeply thankful to Professor Stacy Holman-Jones for attending our workshop and suggesting these texts.


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Affect: Consider your body. How does this work impact your emotional self, your sensual body, your intuition, your memories, your sense of time and so on? Whatever it might be, express this as a stream of consciousness. Concept: After reading the catalogue statement, and spending time with the work, what is your conceptual or intellectual response to this work? Can you see the text’s intention or something else? Placement: Where could you imagine this work, or the affects it produces, being located in an urban context? Think of outdoor locations – parks, laneways, rooftops, car parks, gutters, footpaths . . . an imagined space? – anywhere. The artists’ responses to the ‘affect’ prompt were the shortest. Felt affects are, in some ways, the hardest things to convey given there is no obvious syntax for their expression – we feel affects more successfully than we can describe them with language, and as such it was expected that the audio recording platform would help artists express themselves most effectively. As diagrammed in Figure  3 (page 90), the affect category refers to the moment the artist’s body encounters what is being expressed by the environment. It is the moment of ambiance, in which the artist’s perception reveals a world. The ‘concept’ prompt led to the most verbose expressions. I suspect this is because those trained in the fine arts are encouraged to identify genealogies, and to critique works in that context. In this sense, it was the least useful category for the purposes of this research. However, after some analysis of the transcriptions (which I will discuss in the following section) it became clear that environmental expressions were mixed in with these less useful genealogical critiques. This may be rather confusing, so I will explain: environmental expressions are equivalent to the radiating ambient expressions that move towards the body, pictured in Figure 3. Despite the inadequacy of the concept prompt, by asking the participants to focus on the work itself I had also prompted them to focus on its ambient or environmental expressions. Thus, the category ‘environmental expression’ has been used in Table 2 to reflect their articulations of the ambiences they were experiencing. It is interesting to note that Gernot Böhme states that an atmosphere emerges in between the perceiver and the expressions of an environment. It seems that the respondents expressed this instinctively, via a combination of the ‘affect’ prompt (perception) and the ‘concept’ prompt (environmental expressions). I now consider ‘concept’ to be inadequate in this methodology. It would have been more effective to directly provide a prompt to consider each work’s environmental expression.

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Table 2  Categories of Experience and Themes in Artworks Lisa Hall and Salomé Voegelin, And It Tastes Like Hair Categories


Bodily affect

Invited – synaesthetic experience of hearing through fingertips Intimacy – drawing in/closeness; imagination; listening to secrets through another body; desire to touch Tension – scaffolding and cables producing sense of play and danger Relational – text; wood; sound Interiority – close proximity; curling vines of speakers; personifying the landscape Assembling – something in construction Enclosure – museum; zoo Playground – for multisensory discovery

Environmental expression Urban placement

Byron Dean and Polly Stanton, Emergent Fields Categories Bodily affect

Environmental expression Urban placement

Themes Sense of Place – feeling cold/damp/wet Restoration – meditative/slowing Movement – slow fades create soothing rhythm Tension (related to sound) – emptiness; abandoned; unsettling; industrial nature; ambiguous connection with image Rhythmic – cinematic techniques producing rhythm/resonance/ oscillation Technology and nature – in combination Small places – foyers; shopping malls; places to sit; political intent (e.g., drawing attention to electrical consumption); possible art–entertainment crossover Walls – potential for image only (without sound)

Catherine Clover, Guyup-Guyup: Scores for Eight Songbirds Categories Bodily affect Environmental expression Urban placement

Themes Invited – hearing sounds in head; desire to sing and speak; the voice drawn out of the body Rhythmic – text arrangement makes reference to music or song Relational – brings the outside environment in (especially nearby birdsong) Quietude – leaves room for response Wall – projections or paste-ups, especially where there is bird life, so as to bring attention to what is often ignored Billboards – using poetic text

Camilla Hannan, Contagion Categories Bodily affect

Themes Movement – feet tracing the ground-based powder; push–pull effect of speaker volume range

Translating Ambiances Environmental expression Urban placement


Interactivity – playful materials; traces in landscape invite reflection Assembling – in construction Small spaces – buildings; parks; car parks (a place where loud sounds and mess won’t create issues) Transitory – places that invite motion; coloured sands referencing landscapes and performative ‘painting’

Jordan Lacey and Remi freer, COLD Categories Bodily affect

Environmental expression Urban placement

Themes Movement – coming up through the ground (underground river) Restoration – calmness/relaxation; softens the hardness of industry Sense of Place – creating sense of mystery; a place that used to have water Relational – folds the outside environment inside, including surrounding (ambient sounds) and beneath (ancient waterways) Technology and nature – combination of both Laneway – something for discovery; night-time

Michael Graeve, Rendered Imperfectly Rendered Categories Bodily affect

Environmental expression Urban placement

Themes Movement – shifting awareness of field of sounds and vision Intimacy – body drawn into softness of voice and painted colours Relational – folds the outside environment inside by creating relationships with surroundings; listening space comprises flux/fragments/zones Small spaces – seating; waiting rooms like medical establishments (part of its temporal quality, the time for relationships to reveal themselves)

Andrew Goodman, Gut Feelings Categories Bodily affect Environmental expression Urban placement

Themes Sense of place – inside the body; immediacy Invited – synaesthetic hand–ear connection Tension – dread; creepy; disconnected Interiority – combination of headphones and stomach sounds experienced as cocooning; surfacing of the interior Interactivity – sound–body connection; vibration; haptic Transitory – footpaths; information booths; bringing awareness to the body via haptic listening; crossovers; transforming materials with transduced sound (Continued)

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140 Table 2  (Continued)

Bruce Mowson, Bodies (listening to conversations between trees) Categories Bodily affect

Environmental expression Urban placement

Themes Intimacy – cocooned/womb-like/bound Movement – swaying Restoration – disappearing; listening; relaxing/meditative Tension – motion sickness; vulnerable Interiority – enclosed/interior; rhythmic Detach – suspended body/feet removed from the ground Quietude – encourages listening Relational – brings outside environment inside Parks – swaying; meditating; hanging from trees Indoors – as a means to escape from busy and emotionally cold or disconnected environments; a place to listen to the environment differently

Finally, the ‘placement’ prompt provided its own complexities. The phrasing allowed artists to imagine the placement of the artwork and the potential affects the artwork might elicit in a given urban environment. The artists’ nascent understanding of affect led many to treat the works as external objects that might be relocated, rather than revealing those affects that could potentially impregnate other, already existing, urban forms (which was the intention of this prompt). Regardless, most still managed to fold their immediate experiences into their consideration of placement, and as such the prompt was useful and revealing, as will be described.

Transcription analysis Once completed, each transcription was dealt with methodically. First, I went through the responses to each artwork, artist by artist. I identified and tried to isolate the ways each artist expressed their affective responses, their descriptions of how each work presented itself as an environment, and the types of urban scenarios where they thought the works might be well situated. These I came to describe as the three categories of experience: bodily affect, environmental expression and urban placement, which will be discussed in detail in the following section (note: a summary list attached to each category can be found in Figure 5). I then removed each artist’s name and collapsed the collective responses into nine separate documents corresponding to each artwork, enabling me to find commonalties (or not) across each of the now

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unitary responses (as explained earlier, I ended up using eight of the collective responses). I want to make note again of the ethnographers O’Dell and Willim (2013), whose affirmation of the use of audio recordings in ethnography processes was important to this study. They describe that listening to a recording can reveal something that transcriptions cannot. I agree. The data from this research project may have been enriched if the responses were also listened to directly rather than only read. For instance, an analysis drawn from listening to the recordings might reveal additional patterns, via vocal inflections and tones. For my own purposes, however, I found the written transcriptions easier to work with, particularly as I had the privilege of a research assistant who could do the transcriptions for me! Certainly, no utterances were ignored (‘ums’ and ‘ers’ proliferated) so I did feel connected with the immediacy of speech. However, I accept that I have prioritized the visual over the auditory, and thus removed myself from the immediacy of affect by not taking into account the direct inflections of the recorded voice. It may therefore be missing a whole layer of data; nevertheless, analysing the textual transcriptions was the method I chose to adopt, and it revealed useful data to which I now turn.

The three categories of experience Table 2 lists three categories of experience related to each artwork as identified via the transcribed ethnographic reflections: bodily affect, environmental expression and urban placement. What is useful in this table is to consider the immediate relationships between the bodily affects and the environmental expressions of each artwork – they are entangled. Indeed, it is in the interface between the senses and the environmental generators where atmosphere exists (Böhme 2017b). As such, and as per Figure 3 (page 90), the bodily affects are considered as ambiance, the environmental expressions as ambience and their entanglement as the atmospheres produced. This is an interesting outcome of the practical dimension of the work, which I think supports the distinctions made between ambiance, ambience and atmosphere theory in Part 2 of this book, demonstrating the usefulness of these theories to creative practices. Table 2 represents a distillation of the transcriptions into the affective indexes, which have been italicized. Following these are commonly used terms, or illustrative fragments, from which the affective indexes were induced. Please


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note that a larger range of terms, some of which are not included in Table 2, can be found in Figure 5 (page 122). Any terms found in Figure 5 that have been omitted from this table remain integral to the process of identifying the affective indexes during the transcription analysis. I acknowledge that terms like ‘index’ and ‘induction’ might seem a bit jarring in relation to my Guattarian approach in Part 1 of this book, which avoided representation and categorization in its efforts to explore methods for generating and catalysing lines of flight. However, I think it is important to present this research in such a way that it is accessible to those dominant universes of reference that, at present, determine the formation of our cities. I accept that doing so risks enveloping the study into the very causal frameworks from which it hopes to escape; however, the processes by which the data came to be is embedded in acausal, creative becomings, which the exhibition was able to express via the affective atmospheres generated by the works. It is the intention of this process that the indexes would become entwined with urban design and planning approaches (as we shall see in Tables 4 and 5). Before analysing these categories of experience, I want to spend a moment discussing the theme of entanglement, which it is impossible for these tables to properly express. Entanglements are examples in which all three categories fold into one, in which bodily affect, environmental expression and placement were encountered simultaneously. Despite the three separate prompts, this is how the artists would often express their ethnographic reflections, as the following examples demonstrate: Of Bodies (listening to conversations between trees), which comprised body bags in which the listener was suspended off the ground: ‘[It] make[s] you listen and feel in a different way. The effect as I feel it in my body . . . being encompassed in an interior space like this.’ The feeling of intimacy was often directly related to the environmental expression of interiority, which often fed into ideas of these works being placed in parks or indoor spaces, where its cocooning effects would afford a different listening to the world. Of Guyup-Guyup: Scores for Eight Songbirds: ‘I feel drawn into the score. . . . It makes me want to sing with the bird’; ‘I try to vocalize or imagine what it sounds like from my own vocal-cognitive capacities.’ Here, the feeling of being invited to sing the score relates directly to the work’s quietude, and its text’s rhythmic qualities. This was directly related to ideas of placement on urban walls and billboards, as a means to bring attention to the unheard and/or overlooked life of urban birds (the work also elicited a sort of empathy for avian life often ignored and forgotten).

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Of And It Tastes Like Hair: ‘There’s almost a sense of hearing through the fingertips’; ‘I feel splinters in the skin’; ‘I feel like I’m walking into a world. A small world of discovery that compels me to touch the wood [and] listen to the secrets.’ The bodily affect of intimacy was accompanied by the environmental expressions of interiority and assembling (insofar as the site felt like it was in construction, but also in the sense of it being like a child constructing a reality – a sense heightened by the surrounding wall-based text, which had been spoken by a child of one of the artists). This was directly related to placement ideas in small enclosures for learning such as zoos and playgrounds, particularly where children assemble.

There are many more examples, but I present these three to express how experience is entangled. Indeed, these expressions are consistent with the view of anthropologist Tim Ingold (2010: 3), who argues that rather than being in separated or demarcated relationships with external objects, we are entangled within a ‘meshwork of interwoven lines of growth and movement’. The Deleuzian influence here is evident; Ingold’s meshwork is comparable with the rhizomatic expressions of the intensive real discussed throughout this book. So, the reader should be mindful that the categories are separated for the purposes of analysis only; in actuality, they tend to emerge as entangled explanations.

Design themes: Affect and environment Table 3 summarizes the common affect and environment indexes that emerged out of the sensory ethnography work outlined in Table 2. These are classed according to frequency of mentions from most frequent to least. Urban placement proposals are classed under two broad categories: public/transitory spaces and small indoor spaces.

Bodily affect Tension The brief was clear about the global research aim of discovering techniques for translating restorative affects – calmness and relaxation, for example – into urban spaces, so it came as a surprise that tension emerged as one of the most common themes. Tension can be related to an experience of the unknown, unexpected or mysterious. For example, of Emergent Fields (which documented wind turbines in rural environments), one respondent stated, ‘It’s


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Table 3  The Distribution of Common Themes in Artworks Bodily affect

Environmental expression Urban placement

Tension – 5 Movement – 5 Restoration – 3 Sense of place – 3 Intimacy – 3 Invited – 3

Relational – 5 Public/transitory spaces: Interiority – 3 Laneway, urban wall, Assembling – 2 billboard, playground, Interactivity – 2 park, playground, car park, Rhythmic – 2 footpath Quietude – 2 Small indoor spaces: Technology and nature – 2 Zoo, foyer, museum, visitor Detach – 1 centre, small enclosure

translating an ambiance . . . which absolutely has to be lived through the very act of recording and consideration of technological mediation . . . . So, what we see [is] this picturesque stillness, with the whole undercurrent of activity.’ Of Gut Feelings (which enables the listener to hear and feel both environmental and gut sounds in an everyday context) another respondent said, ‘There’s an undercurrent to this particular situation or environment . . . you can feel that undercurrent can be the event of perceiving or being embodied, or the lived experience of place. It’s not quite always as it seems.’ And of Contagion (a multi-speaker work with cornflour on the floor), another commented, ‘There are some gentle moments that beckon me to walk closer, but still there’s this underlying fear of when the train of chains are going to explode and lash out.’ In each of these examples is the word ‘under’, which, according to the Online Etymology Dictionary, can mean ‘beneath, before, in the presence of, in subjection to, under the rule of, by means of ’. So, there is a sense of being subject to something foreboding; the tension might therefore reveal a dominating or overwhelming presence. Many people, no doubt, feel this way about a world seemingly out of control. We can speculate that tension affects abound in our present world, and so their appearance in the ethnography is perhaps unsurprising. Thought of in another way, it is interesting to note that similar feelings of discomfort can be associated with two of the biophilic patterns discussed later: mystery and risk/peril. Although ideas of nature and wilderness are often connected to ideas of peace, serenity and restoration, tension is an important part of the wilderness experience – for instance, getting lost or encountering wild animals, or simply being isolated in an unfamiliar environment. Being in nature is not always pleasant or relaxing. From a biophilic design perspective,

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the translating ambiance methodology shows us that we need not translate only nature’s pleasant affects – discomfort is part of the wilderness experience. Steve Goodman’s book Sonic Warfare (2012), wherein he borrows the phrase ‘ecology of fear’, sheds further light on this. Although the phrase describes urban bodily experiences related to the favelas and slums of global cities, it can also speak to the underlying low-frequency hum of any global city. Goodman cleverly articulates how bass cultures (sound-system cultures) are able to translate urban bass frequencies into an ‘ecology of joy’ through dance, by appropriating and transforming those very low-frequency sonic materials that lead to feelings of fear and unease. We could therefore speculate that artworks distributed throughout urban environments might infect and transform tension-experiences by somehow recontextualizing these experiences in urban settings. This result is very interesting, as it flips on its head our default notion that we should design unpleasantness out of the environment; rather, we have the option to transform existing tensions into new, felt bodily affects.

Movement ‘Movement’, a term that appeared as frequently as ‘tension’, was split into two experiences. The first referred to physical movement. Examples include Contagion, in which cornflour traces were left by people’s feet, and Bodies (listening to conversations between trees), in which listening bodies were suspended and allowed to sway (incidentally, at times, leading to another tension affect: motion sickness). The second referred to perceptual shifts, related to the auditory imagination’s response to the relational field. Of Emergent Fields, one artist said, ‘This request for the viewer to spend time is very calming. A very calming experience. A slowness.’ Of COLD (which translated a wilderness river environment into an assemblage of air conditioners), another said, ‘I suppose in terms of another urban context it could go in, it could go in another laneway or somewhere that used to be a river.’ In fact, multiple responses to COLD referred to the sense of a river running beneath the ground. And of Rendered Imperfectly Rendered (an assemblage of speakers and paintings), another said, ‘The first sense I get of listening to this work is that my ears are pulled in lots of different directions. The arrangements of the speakers make me, firstly, move near the seats, it physically moves my ears towards these very quiet sounds.’


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Movement is often associated with both sound and affect. Sound is always in movement, and affect is something that flows through and between bodies. And both terms, of course, are often found together under the term ‘sonic affect’. Sounds affect us within a transversal field, by constantly shifting our attention towards differing environmental perspectives and thereby providing a sense of movement, motion and flow. In the context of this study, movement was often associated with a sense of playfulness – both in the way our senses might be encouraged to explore the world and in the way the world can invite us to explore and come to know its many peculiarities and perturbations. Everything, not just sound, is always in movement – the wind keeps things in motion, life itself is motion (breath and ambulation). These are expressions, I believe, of the ubiquitous and vital autonomous affectivities that ensure the world is always becoming; to be in tune with these more-than-human forces is to entrain with the always-emergent creativity of the real.

Restoration and sense of place Restoration related most strongly to the brief ’s intentions. Restoration has strong connections with both acoustic ecology and landscape architectures that explore place-based approaches for creating restorative experiences via, for example, sound installations (Barclay 2017), smartphone technologies (Radicchi, Henckel and Memmel 2018) and even creative noise-based approaches (Cerwén 2017). There was consistently a direct relationship between the themes of restoration and sense of place. In those spaces where people were invited to sit quietly and absorb the experience, this relationship was most apparent. For example, Bodies (listening to conversations between trees) invited people to quietly suspend themselves above the ground, and COLD and Emergent Fields created immersive environments entangling perception with the images and sounds of nature. A respondent to COLD said, ‘It really speaks to a rhythm, a pace, a state of mind which you very much do feel in either rural or more natural, less urban environments’, and most respondents said this work made them feel ‘calm’. Emergent Fields presented some contradictions, as it was able to make people feel both calm and uneasy. The low thrums of the turbines could be discomforting, while the slow transitions in the video projection led to comments like ‘mesmerism, the slowing of time. Drawn into a moment’. Bodies (listening to conversations between trees) also produced feelings of both calm and unease. In both these works, slowness, relaxation and tension rolled into one overall experience. However, in most other cases, as expected, feelings of restoration had strong relationships with stillness, calmness and relaxation.

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Invited The term ‘invited’ was applied by the artists in various ways, typically when a strong relationship to place was evoked – when they found themselves inside something, or were made to feel they belonged. There is a strong relationship between ‘intimacy’ and ‘invited’, given that both are related to a sense of being drawn in or wrapped inside an experience. Feeling invited is commensurate with the joy of exploring wilderness and finding a small nook or cranny where the body is compelled to sit and absorb the world in a moment of wonder – as if the energy of the place were inviting one to do so. The term ‘synaesthesia’ also appeared at times, but I have chosen to fold this into ‘invited’ to avoid any confusion with the more familiar definition of the term. Responses that used the word ‘synaesthesia’ were tied up with experiences of one sense triggering another sense, which led to a curiosity that drew the respondent into a new world. Synaesthetic experiences were reported in relation to two of the works: And It Tastes Like Hair, in which the sounds of microphones rubbing against bramble leaves linked with the sense of touch as respondents felt the rough surfaces of scaffolding in the installation; and Gut Feelings, where sounds of the gut combined with vibrations felt through a sheet of plastic connected to a transducer embedded respondents in an uncomfortable, ‘inner-body’ sensory space. This latter example is, perhaps, a warning that we should be careful to enter the places into which we are invited, given that the outcomes can never be certain (or perhaps this is exactly the reason to enter!). Either way, what these bodily affects suggest is that spaces that feel inviting and/or intimate might be achieved through synaesthetic approaches to design, that integrate different sensory approaches. This is strongly aligned with the goals of urban placemakers (Fleming 2007; Schneekloth and Shibley 1995; Lacey 2016b) who want to make places that people feel they belong to (rather than making people fit into a space that has been created for them). This may shed some light on how sensory and/or atmospheric approaches to urban design might support placemaking initiatives.

Environmental expressions It is unsurprising that relationality should top the list of environmental expressions. Sounds create transversal fields which are relational: we love to dance together embedded in a field of sounds; our bodies instantly respond to the emission of an emergency siren; we jump to attention when we hear the voice of a loved one; and so on. The list is endless, and many writers have explored the


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topic. For instance, Brandon LaBelle (2012; 2018) writes extensively on sonic relationality, exploring the material, social and political capacity of sound to connect to bodies. All of the artworks, in different ways, create relationships between listener and environment, from which various affects emerge. This is perhaps best articulated in Rendered Imperfectly Rendered, which is focused on creating fields of subtle relationalities. As one artist put it, ‘There are so many complex relationships occurring within this space; between the paintings, between the speakers, between the microphone, between the inside and the outside but also the recorded translations of the inside and the outside of his studio, they’re all here.’ Another said, ‘I think of waiting rooms actually. An emergency, dentist, doctor – somehow this kind of work would be very absorbing for those kinds of situations’, making the point that environments that slowly reveal relations could make waiting for long periods of time a more interesting and engaging experience. It is interesting to note that many of the other listed environmental expressions are strongly connected to the idea of relationality, including interiority (which always requires a sense of a related exterior), rhythmic (related to movement), assembling (referring to a group of objects in some type of assembly) and interactivity (in this case, digital-sensory interaction). The remaining terms – ‘quietude’, ‘technology and nature’, ‘detach’ – relate to specific artworks that can be identified in Table 2. These can also be understood as relational, such as the quietude of the soundless, text-based artwork of Guyup-Guyup evoking internal soundings in the participants; the interrelationship of technological sculpture/imagery and field recordings of both Emergent Fields and COLD, and the body becoming detached from the ground upon entering the space of Bodies (listening to conversations between trees), which formed new relations by breaking the typical relationship between ground and feet. In fact, it would probably be fair to say that an external environment is always relational, when we take the time to concentrate on the complexity of any given moment. It certainly fits with the notion of atmospheres, whereby perception and the radiating fields of the external world fuse to produce an in-between (qua relational) atmosphere. It is intriguing to consider, as discussed in Part 2, that these environmental relations are mirrored by a relational field of autonomous affectivities (field of archetypes); a relationship which, when consciously apprehended, gives rise to moments of synchronicity. The synchronistic, as discussed in Part 1, is always operative as an acausal relationship between mind and body;

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but it is those rare moments when we become aware of this in our waking state that we can experience a surge of intuitive knowledge. As discussed in Part 1, Deleuze writes that we should seek to have as many experiences of this third type of knowledge (intuition) as we can. These experiences – of the hidden psychic dimensions  – create lines of flight, leading towards as yet unmanifested territorialities. Imagine, designers of the unconscious, shaping material relations with the sole objective of activating autonomous affectivities. Even if the rational mind reacts violently to such an incursion onto its authority, at the very least, such an approach might lead to landscapes as yet unthought of in the modern context (though I suspect such an approach would be more obvious to the creators of Stonehenge or the various sacred sites of Australia).

Placement Finally, ‘placement’ presented two broad categories: public, usually transitory, spaces and small indoor spaces. Both are tightly aligned with William H. Whyte’s notion of place, which he disseminated via The Social Life of Small Urban Spaces (1980), a study that helped catalyse the practice of placemaking. Indeed, the intention of the ‘placement’ prompt was to consider how the works’ affects might be applied to the transformation of small urban spaces. In outdoor public spaces, this was often considered in relation to how people’s experience of everyday urban life might be transformed, particularly through encouraging people to tune in and listen. In indoor spaces, it came via suggestions of locating works in educational environments such as museums and zoos, or spaces where people sit and wait. The waiting spaces applied to artworks that enabled the slow revealing of relationalities. One artist noted of And It Tastes Like Hair, for example, ‘There’s a sense that you have to move into the work and get close to it and look at it in different ways to take it all in.’ And of Rendered Imperfectly Rendered, a respondent said, ‘This work needs to be in some sort of space where people are sitting, [congregating] in some way, somewhere that’s not too loud, somewhere where people have time to move to the different speakers and listen.’ There are two distinct design possibilities here: outdoor artworks that compel people to stop and experience their environment in different ways, and artworks that inhabit small, indoor spaces that reveal new relations between the perceiving body and its surrounding space. Importantly though, and this seemingly, was not always understood by the respondents, the study did not wish to determine where an artwork might


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be re-situated (although, of course, there is no reason that couldn’t happen) but, rather, wanted them to imagine where and how felt affects caused by the installations might be recreated and/or generated (without necessarily needing to recreate the exact same installation).

Design themes and contemporary sound design approaches In Table 4, it can be seen that the final part of the research process, before the eight design sketches were formed, involved the application of one urban design and two urban sound design approaches to the collated data. These include patterns of biophilic design from Browning, Ryan and Clancy, 14 Patterns of Biophilic Design: Improving Health & Well-Being in the Built Environment (2014), several sonic effects from Augoyard and Torgue’s Sonic Experience: A Guide to Everyday Sounds (2005) and soundscape design approaches included in the sonic rupture model as described in Sonic Rupture (2016). Mapping specific ‘effects’, ‘patterns’ and ‘approaches’ to the ethnographic data enabled me to attach the artists’ ethnographic reflections to the insights of relevant urban design studies that consider the relationship between experience and everyday environments. These three urban design approaches were integrated into the data, specifically to help in the formulation of the eight design sketches which are to be found in Table 5. A brief explanation of each study follows. 14 Patterns of Biophilic Design: Improving Health & Well-Being in the Built Environment presents a variety of patterns recognized by the authors in natural environments, which can be recreated in urban environments. The authors (2014: 21) note that ‘While informed by science, biophilic design patterns are not formulas; they are meant to inform, guide and assist in the design process and should be thought of as another tool in the designer’s toolkit.’ All of the patterns (summary found at Browning, Ryan and Clancy 2014: 23) were found to be relevant to the study, which I will list in what follows. Only two of the patterns, ‘complexity & order’ and ‘prospect’, aren’t included in Table 4, as they were found to be relevant to the entire gallery environment rather than the individual works; I won’t comment further on this here, except to invite the reader to listen to the sound files at www​.translating​-ambiance​.com while reading the description of these two patterns as identified earlier. The relevant patterns are summarized in what follows, in the context of the three categories as defined by the authors (see Browning, Ryan and Clancy 2014 for original descriptions):

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Nature in the space ●●







Visual connection with nature (V) – seeing nature’s natural elements Non-visual connection with nature (NV) – connecting with nature via the other senses Non-rhythmic sensory stimuli (NR) – unpredictable, stochastic productions of nature Thermal and airflow variability (T) – subtle changes of airflow/temperatures on the skin Presence of water (W) – enhancing experience of space with water Dynamic and diffuse light (DL) – varying intensities of light and shadow Connection with natural systems (CN) – awareness of natural processes

Natural analogues ●●


Biomorphic forms and patterns (B) – references to patterns and textures found in nature Material connection with nature (M) – material elements of nature creating sense of place

Nature of the space ●●



Refuge (R) – a place for withdrawal, in which to feel protected Mystery (My) – an enticement to explore an environment more deeply Risk/Peril (R/P) – an identifiable threat (coupled with a safeguard)

It is interesting to note the visual bias of this list. The visual gets its own pattern (V) and all the other senses are lumped into a single pattern (NV). Clearly, there is a lot of work that needs to be done in biophilic design to bring equal attention to each of the senses; if for this reason only, sound studies and field-recording practices have much to offer biophilic designers in correcting their visual bias. Besides that, it is also worth commenting that the first two categories are mainly concerned with environmental expressions, while the third category is mainly concerned with feelings, or with how a place feels. Sonic Experience: A Guide to Everyday Sounds (2006) is a collective research effort from researchers at CRESSON edited by Jean-François Augoyard and Henry Torgue. Their compendium includes six thematic lists of sound effects (17). Effects found to be relevant to this study can be found in the following four (summarized) thematic lists:

152 ●●




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Composition effects (C): linked to the spatiotemporal propagation of sound, especially those able to be subjected to a physical evaluation Mnemo-Perception (MP): related to memory and perception, particularly in relation to individuals and to social and cultural references Psychomotor (P): related to the movement of sounds or examples where perception of motor function interacts Semantic (S) – considers the difference between sounds’ context and emerging signification, causing decontextualization related to human intention

Sonic Experience: A Guide to Everyday Sounds is a groundbreaking book in that the research centre from which it emerges was focused on educating architects, designers and planners about the important role of sound in perception and human experience. As the authors write, ‘Sonic effect presents what is probably one of the most subtle tools of architectural and design projects’ (2006: 12–13). They actively encourage a ‘listening to sonic effects and developing the capacity to identify them as part of a rehabilitation of general auditory sensitivity’ (13) in urban environments. The reader is encouraged to investigate the original text for a full description of the discussed sound effects. Finally, Sonic Rupture: A Practice-Led Approach to Urban Soundscape Design (Lacey 2016a) is my own contribution to the discussion of urban sound design. In the book, I present a model for urban soundscape design which encourages sound artists to apply five approaches deduced from the works of international sound artists. These include the Addition (A) of sounds, the Subtraction (S) of sounds, the Transformation (T) of existing sounds, the use of sounds as a means to elicit Passionate (P) responses from visitors and the Disclosure (D) of existing, unheard sounds. Each of the approaches was attached to a diagram that considers possible artistic intentions for a given space. The model determines that an installation should emerge from the complex amalgam of existing site conditions, possible design approaches and the artist’s intentions for that space. In mapping the ethnographic outcomes of each of the artworks to the five approaches of the ‘sonic rupture’ model, I include reference to the artist’s intentions, although these have not been analysed in relation to the intentions as listed in the original model. Having briefly described each of the three urban design methods I will now present the table that maps the relevant patterns, effects and approaches of the three categories of experience.

Table 4  Artworks with Categories of Experience and Urban Design Approaches Sonic experience

Sonic rupture


Bodily affect

Environmental expression Urban placement

Biophilic design

Lisa Hall and Salomé Voegelin, And It Tastes Like Hair

Synaesthesia Intimacy Tension

Intertwining Interiority Assembling

Enclosure, Playground

V, NV, M, R, R/P

Cocktail (MP), Hyperlocalization (MP)


Byron Dean and Polly Stanton, Emergent Fields

Visceral Restoration Movement Tension

Rhythmic Technology + Nature

Small places, Walls, Visitor centre


Drone (C)


Catherine Clover, GuyupGuyup: Scores for Eight Songbirds


Rhythmic Relational Quietude Interactivity

Wall, Billboards


Phonomnesis (MP)


Camilla Hannan, Contagion

Tension Movement

Interactivity Assembling

Small spaces, Transitory

V, NV, M, R/P

Cocktail (chain) (MP), Lombard (P)


Jordan Lacey and Remi freer, COLD

Movement Restoration Visceral

Relational Technology + nature


V, NV, W, DL, B, MC, R, My

Hyperlocalization (MP), Mask (C)


Michael Graeve, Rendered Imperfectly Rendered

Movement Intimacy


Small spaces

V, NV, NR, R

Doppler – Mic feed (C), Deburau (D)


Andrew Goodman, Gut Feelings

Tension Sense of place Synaesthesia



V; NV NR; CN; My

Repulsion (P), Perdition (S)


Bruce Mowson, Bodies (listening to conversation between trees)

Intimacy Movement Restoration Tension

Interiority Detach Quietude Relational


V, NV, T, DL, R, My, R/P

Cut-off (C), Narrowing (S), Subtraction Repulsion (P) Passion


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Rather than providing a detailed description of how I mapped the various patterns, effects and approaches to the ethnographic research, I encourage the reader to investigate the relevant texts, which will provide the necessary connections. Each of these mappings has been integrated into the eight design sketches in Table 5. Before I discuss this, I will make a few comments in relation to Table 4: ●●



Biophilic design: Many of the patterns of biophilic design are common sense, particularly in relation to the visual and non-visual connections which apply to all of the works. It is interesting to note that the highest number of biophilic patterns appeared in relation to those artworks that created sculptural environments in which the body could be completely immersed, including And It Tastes Like Hair, COLD and Bodies (listening to conversations between trees). This suggests that biophilic design could benefit from the sculptural and immersive practices of public artists when trying to find creative ways to translate the patterns of nature into the urban. Also, ‘mystery’ and ‘risk/peril’ patterns show up frequently. This can be the most difficult pattern to achieve in design projects given the health and safety restrictions that apply to public space; thus, artists can present innovative approaches for biophilic design practices that want to emphasize these patterns. Sonic Experience: Each of the referenced sonic effects can be easily identified in the Sonic Experience book, with each entry providing a useful and succinct summary. There is an even spread of sonic effects across all of the thematic lists except for the ‘semantic’ theme which appeared only in relation to Gut Feelings as the ‘perdition’ sonic effect. Perdition provides insights into the uncomfortable responses of many of the participants to Gut Feelings, related to feelings of tension upon hearing the sounds of the gut. Perdition is ‘characteristic of extreme suffering constituted principally of tears and moans, this effect accompanies life situations that are violent or painful’ (Augoyard and Torgue 2005: 84). This is not to say the artwork produced such experiences (the quote signifies extreme circumstances); however, it is clear that the bodily affects felt in the ethnographic responses to the sounds of Gut Feelings are suggestive of the ‘perdition’ sonic effect, insofar as they created discomfort. Sonic Rupture: The transformation approach was most strongly emphasized by COLD and Rendered Imperfectly Rendered, as they both actively transform

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the sounds of the immediate environment. COLD did this by playing water sounds in an outdoor environment that masked local traffic sounds, and Rendered Imperfectly Rendered used a live microphone to bring the outside sounds into the arena of the artwork. Most of the other works related to the ‘addition’ approach by introducing installations unrelated to the existing environment, or the ‘passion’ approach, which actively elicits emotional responses. Gut Feelings was the only work that applied the ‘disclosure’ approach by making audible the typically unheard sounds of the human gut.

Eight design sketches The eight design sketches emerge from a combination of the responses of the artistic collective and the three discussed urban design methods. These are not presented as the outcomes of a finalized methodology, but move towards an understanding of urban planning rooted in the intuitive understanding of artistic practice. They demonstrate that the capacity of artists to reimagine materiality through their own practices can reveal unique ways for rethinking the design of our cities. The sketches are designed to act as brief prompts, rather than anything prescriptive or deterministic. Rather than basing design on an analysis of place that applies specific scientific or codifying principles, these sketches act as diagrammatic overlays that illuminate new possible approaches for intervention. They could be integrated into an urban design programme as a means to rethink specific projects, or simply act as design tools to fill in identifiable gaps or meet specific creative intentions. Thus, they are left for others to ‘fill in’ or insert into an actual situation. Of course, design codes will eventually infiltrate and distort an original idea – sometimes for the better, and sometimes not. The sketches pre-exist the involvement of reductive bureaucracies governed by technocratic agendas; however, they could present clever ways to subvert the controls of bureaucracy, by taking advantage of the affective (and often ephemeral) approaches of artistic research in the transformation of urban environments. A final note: I do not think that the affects recorded via the artists’ ethnographic reflections, which have been rewritten into the design sketches, could be translated into new scenarios via the design sketches. This is because affects need to be felt by a body before they can be translated into a new environment. That is, the visceral bodily affect cannot be translated via a written (conceptual) treatment, which after all is closer to a common notion than a felt affect. What is certain, however, is that these design sketches are the result of


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Table 5  Design Sketches for Artworks: Themes with Urban Design Insights Artworks Lisa Hall and Salomé Voegelin, And It Tastes Like Hair

Design sketches

Synaesthetic design that connects touch, sound, olfactory and visual affordances in meaningful ways, to create environments offering a ‘world of sensual contact’. An open assemblage of materials which invites visitors inside a place of refuge and mystery, and where danger might be ‘staged’, to reveal new worlds for education, imaginative play and/or aesthetic purposes. Byron Dean and Adding cinematic techniques to create links between people Polly Stanton, and environments. Techniques include slow-moving Emergent Fields images that recalibrate everyday rhythms and evoke new atmospheres. Drone effects carefully applied to transform tension and to encourage concentration. Useful for education and visitor centres as an aesthetic tool in outdoor spaces that ‘paints with light’ and/or creatively combines audio and video. Catherine Clover, Use of text – onomatopoeic and rhythmic – to bring attention Guyup-Guyup: to specific sounds of nature and/or urban spaces. Effective Scores for Eight in noisy environments, which, by taking advantage of the Songbirds phonomnesis effect, enables listeners to conjure new sounds in their auditory imagination that produces passionate responses, even if people can’t hear the actual referent sounds. Camilla Hannan, Use of non-toxic materials (powders/sands) creates a sense of Contagion collective ground-based painting in public spaces – leaving visual traces of the body. For instance, colours could create relationships with Australia’s desert interior. The use of carefully applied dynamic ranges of sound can heighten alertness in an environment, presenting as feelings of risk (tension) and mystery (the unknown). Jordan Lacey and Using technology to embed natural effects (sound/light) within Remi freer, industrial artefacts, to create small hybrid (industry–nature) COLD spaces for restoration that provide refuge and a sense of place. Example of how water sounds can mask local traffic sounds without the use of water fountains. Demonstrates how technology enables urban environments to produce expressions found in nature, without trying to directly recreate nature. Michael Use of material combinations – sonic/visual/object – and Graeve, strategic seating in small spaces to slowly reveal a complexity Rendered Imperfectly of subtle relationships. Use of quiet sounds to encourage Rendered a searching for sounds. Use of live microphones to create relationships between indoor and outdoor spaces. Use of shifting conditions of light and sound, to bring new perceptions into existing urban conditions.

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Artworks Design sketches Andrew Goodman, Use of material vibration techniques, such as the transduction Gut Feelings embedded in urban infrastructures, to create new visceral sensations in outdoor spaces. Presents ways to disclose the seeming silence of the body, and unfold it into noisy environments. Connects with natural systems by bringing the typically hidden ecology of the body’s interior to the exterior. Bruce Mowson, Hanging cocoons that suspend the body, which produce Bodies (listening feelings of risk/peril and a unique sense of place. A sense of to conversation mystery can accompany the body transformed by thermal between trees) changes, and a narrowing effect (of shrinking space). Visual cues (perhaps material transparency) could be provided to avoid discomfort attached to swaying motions. Suggestive of designs that alter the body’s standing/ambulatory conditions creating new ways of engaging with everyday environments.

a  process by which affects were translated and therefore, I hope, could present an affect-based approach to the design of urban environments. Other experimental artistic research processes applying the ideas explored here, would lead to different constellations of affect and possible design sketches. I can only hope that such future experimentation, might improve on my own gallery-based experiment. Indeed, I could imagine a hybrid ‘biophilic design– public art’ project that applied a research process such as this, to develop something truly fascinating, sensorial and transformative. Finally, it is not my intention to suggest that the authors of the original artworks in any way intended to create – materially or effectually – the descriptions provided in the design sketches, only that this is what has appeared via the research process as summarized in Figure 5. The autonomy of the artist must always be protected, lest their idiosyncratic approaches be subsumed, and thus homogenized, by larger agendas. However, this does not mean we shouldn’t experiment with the possibility of harnessing collective artistic energies as a means to transform the experiential worlds we inhabit.

Final remarks, Part 3 The particular methodology tested and discussed in Part 3 of this book is the ‘translating ambiance’ method. ‘Translating ambiance’ aims for the bodily knowledge of the artist engaged in field-recording practices to be translated into


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the creation of works in urban contexts (in this case a gallery). By engaging with ethnographic processes, the collective artistic body was able to provide reflections that presented a range of responses. These responses have been identified as affective indexes, which have gone on to inform the creation of the design sketches. The design sketches are a tool for aiding the development of a diversity of created environments in urban spaces, which, rather than reducing human behaviour in public places to consuming, working and resting, instead encourages the emergence of alternative feelings, thoughts and actions. The method imagines cities which, much like the wilderness spaces of the planet, are able to contain a variety of environments wherein the exploring human body can discover a range of affects and interconnections. Urban planning – knowingly or not – applies reductive tendencies by ensuring that human actions (direct and indirect) subscribe to the strict limitations of specific codifications. Given the dominant presence of existing codes, this seems unavoidable. However, what this project demonstrates is that we can draw upon the affective experience of artists who have developed their own unique, even idiosyncratic, relationships with the land, because such affects can pass into others via the act of creation. An affect-based approach to the design of urban environments encourages the human subject to discover itself as something more than a functional agent of urban life, in which human subjectivity is reduced to a limited range of possible experiences. Alternatively, the translating ambiance approach intends to decentre human subjectivity by facilitating connections with those more-than-human forces operating beneath, and beyond, perception. The eight design sketches are presented in a way that try to remain true to Guattari’s diagrammatic approach that seeks to discover other Universes of Value. These require the creation of new worlds via the transformation of both perception (personal) and the desiring-flows of the intensive real (pre-personal) which lock everyday material assemblages into fixed resonating patterns. As such, the sketches are not intended as representational or descriptive, but, rather, as singularities (events) and/or imaginative prompts that might catalyse lines of flight which transmute existing or forthcoming designs and/or plans. These are ruptures that allow creative surges of desire to burst through. I believe artists are adept at reassembling the real; all in a moment, they can flip or recode a world to create completely new awareness. That is the spirit in which the design sketches have been developed and how they might be applied – prompts that flip or recode an existing resonating pattern, to reveal as-yet-unthought-of urban assemblages that evoke the new.

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Additionally, the design sketches are rooted in the premise that autonomous affectivities are pre-personal, exceeding all human endeavour and consciousness, and that these autonomous affectivities can only ever be known as felt affects. The charge of intensity experienced by the sound artist in the field passes into the subsequent installation, the lingering affects of which are suggestive of the original autonomous affectivity (whether it is activated or not). Artists, via fieldwork practices, tend to be sensitive towards these felt affects – and have the tools to document their experiences – and are thus the ideal carriers of affects across environments. The translating ambiance method tries to take advantage of this by giving city inhabitants the chance to be affected by more-than-human forces that surge in the wild places of our planet, but typically remain in stasis beneath the concreted lands of the city due to their immobilization by the weight of repressive significations. The experience of embodying an autonomous affectivity is always synchronistic, insofar as an autonomous affectivity, as registered by the psyche, appears synchronously with perceptual encounters of the material world in which the body is immersed. No one can predict or design synchronicity; however, we can say that its occurrence is always a oneness of experience.



On the oneness of experience

Throughout this book I have referred to the ‘oneness of experience’. I derived this term from my own synchronistic experience while writing this book, which involved a combination of the dream described in the Preface and my readings of Marie von Franz. As I discuss in Part 2 of this book, von Franz describes experiences of synchronicity in relationship to the archetypal number one; they present a oneness of experience that cannot be repeated and typically emerges through practices rooted in chance or coincidence (oracles, I Ching, tarot, etc.). This is in sharp contradistinction to what we would typically consider to be valid scientific knowledge, which, as von Franz astutely points out, requires an infinity of experiments to be properly accepted as such. I am of the opinion that the sciences could be complemented by artistic research in the making of more interesting and engaging cities. Unfortunately, there remains little tolerance for the oneness of experience. It is often filtered out by the rational mind, which applies strict epistemological codes to determine what is allowed to be truth.1 Of course, scientists themselves can, indeed, be very open to such complementarity; the problem now, I think, lies with those scientisms that apply a techno-managerial language to purge irrational approaches to knowledge. Following von Franz, I believe that a more productive approach to urban transformation would see irrational (that is, beyond rational) approaches as complementary to scientific approaches; we could imagine, for instance, urban soundscape design (and urban design approaches in general) that use data-driven methods to understand perceptual responses to soundscapes, while also making room for artistic research methods that might produce the very soundscapes we desire before we even know they exist. It is really a case of expanding the tools at our disposal to transform our world for the better. Properly respected, such complementary

One could also turn to Paul Feyerabend’s (2010) Against Method for an articulate, historical argument against the dominating rationalities of the sciences.



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approaches could rapidly increase our knowledge to create the healthier, happier and vital communities we desire. The oneness of experience, as explored in this book, is particularly interested in artistic research. Sound artists are adept at coagulating a oneness of experience into a creation, whether it be sculptural, sonic, textual and so on. This is not to say that every artistic creation is accompanied by feelings of synchronicity; that is a claim that could never be substantiated. But I think it is fair to say that artists employ both their mind and body in acts of creation, and even if synchronicity isn’t consciously apprehended at such times, it is apparent as an intensive force that is realized through the creative expressions of mind–body combinations. This is sometimes called ‘being in the flow’, or perhaps the enactment of an ‘intuitive practice’. I know that when I haven’t created something for a long time, I feel like I won’t know what to do before I begin a process; but inevitably, once I start, it happens almost of its own accord. I suspect this is a familiar experience for many of those involved in artistic creation. And I think it is fair to say that such experiences are suggestive of synchronistic processes, even if they are not consciously experienced as such. If, as Deleuze tells us, the mind apprehends its own eternity while perceiving the essence of the body, when engaged in the third knowledge-type (intuition, as related to synchronicity experiences), then we might speculate that synchronicity is consciously experienced as a powerful intensive surge only when the body and mind are not actively creating. This is because the intensive charge flowing through the body cannot be apprehended by the mind when it is actively engaged in the process of creation. During such moments, rather than intensive charges being conspicuously felt or experienced by the mind, they are, instead, transferred into that which is being manifested/ created. What this points to is that synchronicity should never be considered as a specific process or a single type of experience; it is multivalent, emerging uniquely and idiosyncratically, which is in keeping with its definition as a oneness of experience. The synchronistic practice of the oneness of experience presents a powerful way to reimagine what our world might feel like, particularly if we consider it from the perspective of the creation and/or transformation of our cities. If cities are left in the hands of planners that act according to codifications derived from policies and by-laws (a type of techno-managerial model that believes itself superior to idiosyncratic approaches), then it is inevitable that all cities under the control of IWC will devolve into environmental and sensorial uniformity, generating atmospheres of blandness. The reader need only take a look at



Google Maps to see the urban sprawl common to many global cities, in which replicant houses based on specific building codes and practices proliferate. Of course, the ever-increasing height of housing blocks is another example of this seemingly unstoppable urban phenomenon. It is this that I was reacting against when, in Sonic Rupture, I suggested that networks of sonic ruptures could be an effective way to transform our urban sonic environments. There are excellent public art programmes that work towards something similar. Indeed, there are exciting interdisciplinary projects emerging that are combining design, architectural and public art approaches with a central focus on sound (some of which have been mentioned in the body of this text). Even if the objective of these various projects is not to rupture, they certainly intend to populate cities with artworks that produce experiential difference, which is an important step towards the transformation of our cities. To be truly effective, artistic processes and experiences should be entangled with design and planning actions. It is too easy to signify a public artwork as just another public artwork; therefore, public art easily falls into redundancy (ignored/categorized/systematized). Art that isn’t obviously art but exerts a certain transformative pressure on the body may be more effective in creating new perceptions. These would be best embedded in urban environments not as obvious representations of cultural and/or aesthetic intentions but as subtle perturbations that speak to the pre-personal, vis-a-vis experiences that are registered beneath the level of perception, entering into consciousness via the power of their transformative effect. Sound and, more broadly, atmospheres, present excellent mediums by which such subtle perturbations might be achieved. In Part 3 of this book, I have attempted to make the impractical practical. I say impractical, as it is hard to put into practice forces and intensities that are pre-personal or operate beneath the level of perception, and are therefore difficult to empirically verify. What I have hoped to demonstrate is that even if the existence of pre-personal forces is doubted, we can design experimentations as if they do exist, which will, at the very least, yield results that could elicit as-yet unthought-of approaches for transforming the sensorial world in which we reside. In the experimental process reported in Part 3, I argue for the existence of wild autonomous affectivities in the earth-body that can be felt as affects in the human body. These felt affects can be transported elsewhere and translated into a new environment. Of course, anyone might experience such affects. But artists are in the trade of creating affective environments and are adept at creating structures (sculptures, sonic architectures, etc.) into which they can translate felt


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affects. Wild affectivities can, of course, exist anywhere, but I have argued that they are more likely to be experienced in the non-urban places of the planet. Part 1 of this book applied a Guattarian diagrammatic approach to argue that systems of signs control our experiences and therefore our understanding of the world, and that these systems of signs are most dominant in the urban environment. It is precisely because non-urban spaces are relatively free of these significations and the incredible weight of expectation they exert on perceptual apparatuses that autonomous affectivities are more likely to be felt/experienced in the less urbanized, and wilder, parts of the earth. It follows from this that if these wild affects are more easily felt, then artists who engage in fieldwork practices in the wild are the ideal people to facilitate their successful translation. In the translation of ambiances, this book attaches utmost importance to the intuitive, listening and technical abilities of the phonographer, or field-recording artist. I have identified biophilic design as an existing urban design approach that might be a place to begin absorbing the idiosyncrasies of artistic research. There is something obvious about this, because biophilic designers, like practising phonographers, want to bring nature into the city. Unlike phonographers, biophilic designers are exclusively focused on the transformation of outdoor spaces (and sometimes interior spaces) of our cities with what they consider to be the patterns of nature. Phonographers typically use their recordings for some type of media playback – for research, installation or entertainment purposes. However, embedding the artistic practices of phonographers in biophilic design approaches could be extremely valuable. Artists can add a sonic dimension that is often ignored, and they can assist in reimagining techniques for the translation of nature. For instance, it needn’t be only the stuff of nature that is translated (its objects and representations), but it could also be the subtlest of natural effects that are used to gently perturb existing or new infrastructures. To my mind this opens up many exciting opportunities, which is partly what I tried to explore in the description of the experimental research process in Part 3. In Part 3 I also identified existing bodies of practicebased sound studies that demonstrate how sound works in an urban context. We could add to this a growing number of practice-based, interdisciplinary sound studies that present heterogeneous pathways towards meaningful sonic urban transformation.2 Finding a way to combine this emerging body Including, for instance, present interdisciplinary research projects led by Gascia Ouzounian (England), Marcel Cobussen (Netherlands) and Catherine Guastavino (Canada) as discussed in Part 2.




of work with the equally powerful intentions of biophilic design (as I have tried to do) could lead to a hybrid approach to urban design that is able to transform environments and perceptions in previously-unthought-of ways, and see the emergence of what I have referred to elsewhere as a second or new nature (Lacey 2012; 2016, via Lefebvre 1991). I would like to make the point that although much of my discussion is focused on human perception, such efforts should also consider the experiences of the non-human (namely, other species). Biophilic design, of course, is well placed to accommodate the needs of non-humans, who are so often left out of the conversation regarding the planning of our cities; and, as some of the artists in Part 3 have shown (especially the work of Catherine Clover), the non-human can certainly be accommodated by artistic approaches. Finally, in writing this book, I have come to believe it is vitally important that we trust in the validity of our own experiences. The rush of more-than-human forces that emerge as irrational knowings can occur to any of us, and become a significant source of inspiration and creation. I have called these more-thanhuman forces, autonomous affectivities. These are transversal forces that roar beneath the urban, seeking emergence through our experience. I speculated in Part 1 that the ability to connect and work with these wild affects was more familiar to Indigenous cultures, and that the need to reconnect with them is a critical project for contemporary societies. Artistic researchers – and sound artists in particular – I contend, are well placed to hear this urban roar, and to bring these intensities to the surface. These moments I have defined as synchronistic becomings, which are synonymous with the oneness of experience during which autonomous affectivities are both felt, and coagulated, into acts of creation. These experiences are all too hastily dismissed by the dominating presence of rationalists, who claim a superior grasp on knowledge simply because they are able to verify their claims with the most basic epistemology (I see it, you see it, therefore it’s real). The consequence of this type of thinking is to dismiss all of those world views that do not adhere to its limited empirical guidelines. One of the effects of this position is to reduce Indigenous knowledge(s), which engages with multiple animisms or spiritualities, to naive expression. It also has the deleterious effect of preventing the necessary transformation of our own contemporary civilizations, where new modes of thought and practice are trying to re-engage with the irrational (vis-a-vis the intuitive and the unknown) in an effort to reimagine our role and place on this planet. I speak here in particular of the various more-than-human studies that are attempting to reposition human


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subjectivity in relation to the non-human, and those forces and intensities that exceed human apprehension and knowledge. Sound studies is an important part of this repositioning of the human subject. Any approach, particularly an environmental one, that privileges the act of listening, necessarily requires integration with the surrounding world, not just through acts of listening, but also by respectfully interconnecting with and acknowledging a world that exceeds personal desire. Indigenous people in Australia have practised deep listening for millennia, and through this (at least partly), were able to build societies and world views that were deeply respectful of land and life, enduring and, by all accounts, happy (a comment I base on my readings, conversations and life experiences). The scourge of colonization has been the most profound transformative event our planet has witnessed (beyond meteor strikes, presumably) and in only a very short period of time, much life is on the verge of collapse. Surely, moving towards respectful reintegration with the planet should become our ecosophical imperative. Throughout this book, I have argued that the embracing of irrational ideas such as synchronicity provides us with pathways by which we might begin to re-engage with the land, and start to imagine what a life means and what a society could be. This is a gargantuan and seemingly impossible task. But we all need to start somewhere, and for me it is in reimagining the ways our cities feel, so that they are no longer just the engine houses of capitalism, but also enchanting and vital places that exist to provoke new human becomings.

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Index Page numbers in italic indicate a figure and page numbers in bold indicate a table on the corresponding page. 2970° The Boiling Point (2015)  51, 52 abstract machine  43, 46, 50 acausal synchronicity  17, 54, 62, 64, 66, 77, 78, 88, 103, 106, 110 acoustic atmospheres  110–16 acoustic designer  111 acoustic ecology  11, 12, 18, 26, 111, 128, 146 acoustic space  59 aesthetic economy  42 aesthetic politics  99 aesthetics of space  92 affective atmosphere  1, 101–10, 123, 142 affect theory  3, 6, 18 agential realism  96 Aletta, Francesco  114 Alpine snowfields  119 altermodernity  125 n.1 ambiance  1 n.2, 2, 22, 54, 79, 83, 87–9, 90, 92–6, 124–5, 131, 142 ambience  2, 87, 89, 90, 91–3, 95, 96, 124, 142 ambient poetics  92 ambisonic soundscape recordings  118–19 anarchic society  49, 51 Anderson, Ben  88 Anderson, Sven  50 n.10 And It Tastes Like Hair (2019)  130, 143, 147, 150, 154 Anthropocene  10, 115 anthropological studies  37 anti-globalization protests (2000)  95 Aquatic Centre (2019)  130 archetypes  2, 4, 14–17, 16 n.1, 18–21, 33, 35, 56–9, 61–3, 67–8, 71–4, 73 n.23, 76–9, 81, 102, 118, 149

area-less spaces  97, 106 artistic creation  1, 80, 162 artistic creativity  77, 80 artistic experimentation  12, 16, 17, 101 artistic flights, diagram of  23–7, 24, 25, 30–3, 35–46 left and right lines of flight  46–62, 48 overview  23–7 striated and smooth concept  21, 28–33, 29 urban transformation  27–8 white wall of signification  33–46, 34, 64 artistic practices  4, 10, 12, 17, 82, 121, 124, 125, 127, 155, 164 artistic research  2, 6, 9–11, 15, 74, 89, 103, 112, 115, 116, 121, 122, 124, 129–30, 157, 161, 162, 164 a-signifying ruptures  12, 17, 18, 80 Assange, Julian  37, 49 Assembly for the Future (2020)  51, 52 atmosphere  2, 22, 42, 54, 83, 87–9, 90, 92, 93, 96–101, 124, 132, 142 audio-playback techniques  133 audio-technical equipment  3 audiovisual litany  59–61, 110 Augoyard, Jean-François  109, 116, 150, 152 Sonic Experience: A Guide to Everyday Sounds  109, 150, 152, 155 Auinger, Sam  100, 112 Australia  30, 32, 57–8, 61 Australian Indigenous people  85, 128, 166 Australian bushlands  128 autonomous affectivities  1, 2, 4–6, 15, 17, 19, 21–3, 35, 54–65, 55, 67, 71, 73–5, 77, 79–82, 88, 89, 102,



119, 121, 123–4, 135, 146, 149, 159, 163–5 autonomous zones  49 Barad, Karen  96 Barclay, Leah  91 Bennett, Jane  6 Berlant, Lauren, The Hundreds  136 Berman, Bob  93 n.2 Bijsterveld, Karin  59 biophilic design  127–9, 145, 150, 151, 154, 158, 164, 165 biophilic designers  127, 129, 152, 164 black holes  22, 40, 42, 43, 46, 47, 50, 51, 53, 54, 64, 65 Blesser, Barry, Spaces Speak, Are You Listening?  58, 58 n.13 bodies  2, 4–8, 11, 12, 15, 20, 21, 23, 28, 32, 33, 36, 39–40, 42, 45, 46, 57, 65, 66, 69, 76, 77, 82, 85, 87, 88, 93, 94, 107, 110, 123, 132 Bodies (listening to conversations between trees) (2019)  130, 142, 145–9, 154 bodily affects  69, 79, 82, 100, 123, 141, 142, 144–8, 157 invited  147–8 movement  145–6 restoration and sense of place  146–7 tension  144–5 body listening  52 Böhme, Gernot  42, 88, 96–100, 108, 110, 114, 137 Critique of Aesthetic Capitalism  42, 99 Boon Wurrung  58 Bourriaud, Nicolas  125, 125 n.1, 127 Radicant, The  125, 125 n.1 Braidotti, Rosi  5, 6, 30 n.3, 107, 108, 115 Posthuman, The  30 n.3, 107 Browning, William, 14 Patterns of Biophilic Design: Improving Health & Well-Being in the Built Environment  150 Buchanan, Ian  6–8, 22, 43, 47, 94 Assemblage Theory and Method  22 Bull, Michael, The Bloomsbury Handbook of Sonic Methodologies  111

Cage, John  104, 105, 105–6 n.7, 109, 116 ‘Experimental Music: Doctrine’  105 Silence  105 Campbell, Joseph  58 Can’t Get You Out of My Head (2021)  9 capitalism  8, 9, 22, 26–8, 30–3, 36, 36, 39–42, 44, 45, 47, 99, 125, 166 Capitalocene  10 Carlyle, Angus, In The Field: The Art of Field Recording  91 Carpenter, Edmund  59 Centre for Sonic Space and the Urban Environment (CRESSON)  88, 152 chance techniques  105, 116 Christo and Jeanne-Claude  50 Clancy, Joseph, 14 Patterns of Biophilic Design: Improving Health & Well-Being in the Built Environment  150 Clastres, Pierre, Society Against the State  37 Clover, Catherine  130, 133, 165 Cobussen, Marcel  111, 114, 115, 164 n.2 Bloomsbury Handbook of Sonic Methodologies, The  111 ‘(New) Sonic Ecologies’  114 COLD (2019)  130, 135, 146–8, 154, 155 collective artistic method  119 collective expression  52–3 collective unconscious  1 n.1, 4, 16, 16 n.1, 17, 19, 20, 56, 58, 61, 67, 68, 71–4, 72 n.22, 73 n.23, 76–8, 101, 102, 106, 107, 109, 149 colonialism  62 colonization  31, 38, 87, 166 composition effects  152 Contagion (2019)  130, 144, 145 contemporary sound design approaches and design themes  150–2, 154–5 natural analogues  151 nature in space  151 nature of space  151–2, 154–5 continuous variation  69–71, 78 Corringham, Viv  117 n.13 Cox, Christoph  3–7, 62 n.17 Sonic Flux  6

Index creative duplicity  49–51 creative practice  11, 21, 60, 64, 81, 114, 142 Crutzen, Paul  115 Curtis, Adam  8–9 Cusack, Peter, Berlin Sonic Places  112 data-driven methods  161 Dean, Byron  130, 133 de Freitas, Elizabeth  5 DeLanda, Manuel  6 Deleuze, Gilles  2, 3, 6–9, 15–17, 19, 22, 31, 37, 42–5, 47, 56, 65, 66–79, 69 n.20, 70 n.21, 73 n.23, 82, 86, 87, 94, 104, 106 n.8, 107, 108, 149, 162 Difference and Repetition  69, 71 Expressionism and Spinoza  66 Expressionism in Philosophy: Spinoza  66, 107 Thousand Plateaus, A  22, 28, 37, 41 n.9, 42, 45 Delpech-Ramey, Joshua A.  56, 70 Descartes, René  65, 66, 69 desires  9, 10, 19–28, 30, 32, 33, 35–7, 40–7, 50, 51, 53, 57, 87, 116 desiring-body Earth  2 n.3, 23, 31–3, 36, 39, 41, 47, 51, 54, 64, 81–3, 87, 116, 123, 124, 128 deterritorialization and reterritorialization  22, 27, 28, 30–3, 36–42, 46, 47, 51, 57, 62, 64, 87, 125 dictatorship of the signifier  8–10, 18, 23, 35, 47, 50, 64, 82, 86, 87, 130 difference-in-itself  62 n.17, 69, 70, 72, 73 differential unconscious  67, 71–5 divination techniques  103, 104 double-slit experiment  96 dreaming  16–17, 72 ecological crisis  92 ecosophy  11, 17–18, 26, 100, 166 electro-dermal skin activity (EDA)  5 Emergent Fields (2019)  130, 144–8 emotional affect  88 emotional economy  42 enchanted encounter  68


environmental ecology  11, 17, 18 environmental expressions  137, 141–3, 148–9, 152 environmental radiations  95 environmental relations  149 environmental-scale installations  50 environmental sound  88, 89, 100 essences  2, 4, 15, 19, 35, 64, 67–8, 73–7, 79, 80, 87, 102, 107, 162 ethnographic method  124, 125, 131 ethnographic process  121, 158 Europe  112 Europeanizing of face  44 European Research Council  113 Evental Aesthetics  111 everyday life  17, 58, 64, 82, 98, 117, 136 faciality and white wall of signification  42–6, 49–51, 54, 57, 64 Feld, Steven  124 felt affects  4–6, 15, 58, 100, 121, 123–5, 128, 135, 137, 150, 159, 163 felt body  97, 106 feudalism  30 Feyerabend, Paul, Against Method  161 n.1 field-recording techniques  132, 133, 148, 152, 158 fieldwork practices  1, 2, 64, 87, 89, 91, 119, 121, 123, 124, 130–2, 164 First International Conference of Mexican Acoustic Ecology Network (2019)  117 n.13 Flügge, Elen  113 freer, Remi  130, 134 French Island mangroves and wetlands  119 Freud, Sigmund  19, 20, 68, 78 gallery-based installation  119, 132, 135 gallery environment  1, 119, 121, 123, 131–3, 151 Genosko, Gary  19, 20 global city  9, 41, 145, 163 globalization  125 Goodman, Andrew  130, 130 n.4, 133 Goodman, Steve  3–5, 145



Sonic Warfare  145 Graeve, Michael  130, 133 Green Revolution  126 Guastavino, Catherine  114, 164 n.2 Guattari, Félix  2, 6–11, 15, 17–27, 30 n.3, 31–2, 36–7, 39–47, 50, 51, 53, 56, 57, 68, 81, 82, 85, 89, 94, 100, 116, 117, 125, 126, 130, 159 Chaosmosis  18, 23 ‘Ecosophical Practices and the Restoration of the “Subjective City”’  27 Lines of Flight: For Another World of Possibilities  18, 23 Schizoanalytic Cartographies  18, 23 Thousand Plateaus, A  22, 28, 37, 41 n.9, 42, 45 Three Ecologies, The  18, 23 Guattarian approach  1, 142, 159, 164 Guattarian diagram  8, 18, 19 Guevara, Che  27 Gulpilil, David  38 n.8 Gut Feelings (2019)  130, 144, 147, 155 Guyup-Guyup: Scores for Eight Songbirds (2019)  130, 143, 148

Indigenous societies  28, 30 n.4, 30–2, 37, 42 Indigenous thinking  85–7 individuation process  68, 74, 77 indoor spaces  143, 144, 149, 150 Industrial Revolution  126 Ingold, Tim  143 Institute for Practical Philosophy, Darmstadt  100 Integrated World Capitalism (IWC)  8–11, 22, 23, 40, 95, 99, 162 INTER-NOISE Congress  114 intuition  75–7, 82 intuitive knowledge  15, 22, 74, 79, 80, 86, 149

Hall, Lisa  130, 130 n.4, 133 Hannan, Camilla  130 Harmonic Bridge (1998)  100, 112 Herzog, Werner  60 n.16 hierarchical society  49 Hitler, Adolf  50 Holman-Jones, Stacy  136 n.7 Homer  38 Iliad  38 Odyssey  38 humanoid aliens  108

Kang, Jian  114 Kay, Martin  130, 133 Kelly, Alex  52 n.12 Kelly, Caleb, ‘Materials of Sound’  3 Kerslake, Christian  16, 66, 68, 71, 73, 77–9, 86 Deleuze and the Unconscious  16 Kngwarreye, Emily Kame  38 n.8 Kngwarreye, Kudditji  38 n.8 Koolhaas, Rem  41, 42, 130 Krause, Bernie  128, 128 n.3 Kuhn, Hans Peter  100

I Ching  104–5 imagination  69, 75–6, 109, 126, 135, 145 in-between theory  89 incantatory rituals  57 Indigeneity  35–9, 45, 53, 54, 56, 57, 60, 62, 81–2, 85, 87 Indigenous cultures  31, 108, 165 Indigenous knowledge  116, 165 Indigenous people  39, 58, 60, 61

James, Robin  59 Journal of Sonic Studies  3 Jung, Carl  2, 15–17, 16 n.1, 18–21, 30 n.4, 46, 56, 58, 61, 62, 65–8, 71–9, 73 n.23, 78 n.24, 81, 82, 86, 87, 101, 102, 104, 104 n.6, 106, 108, 108 n.9, 118 Synchronicity: An Acausal Connecting Principle  73, 78 Junkspace  41, 130

LaBelle, Brandon  39, 148 Lexicon of the Mouth  39 Lacan, Jacques  19 Lacey, Jordan  130, 133 ‘Sonic Placemaking’  112 Sonic Rupture: A Practice-led Approach to Urban Soundscape Design  11–12, 26, 28 n.3,

Index 50 n.10, 81, 88, 98, 111–13, 115, 150, 152, 154, 163 land-body interconnection  31 land management  128 Lane, Cathy, In The Field: The Art of Field Recording  91 Langan, Robert  78, 78 n.24 Lanza, Robert  93 n.2 Leibniz, Gottfried Wilhelm  4 linear evolution  28, 31, 33, 61 lines of flight concept  1, 17, 18, 21–3, 28, 39, 42–4, 46–57, 62–4, 77, 82, 87, 126, 127 lo-fi/hi-fi concept  111 Lopez, Francesco  3 McCormack, Derek P.  5 McLuhan, Marshall  59, 60 McMillan, Christian  68 magical practices  35 mandalas  118 Marx, Karl  9 Massumi, Brian  5, 6, 49, 88 material assemblages  6, 8, 159 materialism  3, 7, 14 materiality  3, 39, 116, 155 Maturana, Humberto R.  4 n.5 Maxwell, Grant  68 mental ecology  11, 17, 18, 22, 27, 64 Merriman, Peter  41 n.9 metaphysics  65, 67 micro-fascism  50 mind and psyche  1, 1 n.1, 4, 5, 12, 20, 40, 54, 65, 66, 67, 74–6, 78, 79, 101, 102, 106–8, 110, 117, 123, 124, 149, 159 mind-body parallelism  53, 65, 67, 69–70, 75, 78, 80, 81, 90 mind-body relationships  54, 66, 67, 78, 88 mnemo-perception  152 molar forces  94, 95 molecular  94, 95 Mood Media  127 more-than-human forces  1, 3, 4, 12–16, 32, 54, 57–9, 61–2, 68, 73, 121, 123, 146, 159, 165


Morton, Timothy, ‘Why Ambient Poetics? Outline for a Depthless Ecology’  92 movement-space  91 Mowson, Bruce  130, 133 Muzak (Mood Media)  99 mythology  54, 57–62 natural sciences  60 natural sounds  128, 131 Nazi Germany  50 Neuhaus, Max  11, 13, 39, 111, 112 Neumark, Norie  39 Voicetracks  39 Neville Street Refurbishment (2008)  100 Newton, Isaac  93 niche hypothesis  128 Nietzsche, Friedrich, The Birth of Tragedy  37 noise pollution  113 nomadic societies  28, 30 n.4 Not Yet It’s Difficult  51, 52 Occupy Wall Street protests  49 O’Dell, Tom  125, 141 Odland, Bruce  100, 112 Oliveros, Pauline  116–19, 117 n.13 Deep Listening  117 oneness of experience  65, 65 n.18, 80, 82, 86, 103, 104, 116, 124, 129, 159, 161–6 Ong, Walter  60 Ott, Brian  88, 89 ‘Affect in Critical Studies’  88 Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Communication  88 Otways rainforest and oceans  119 Ouzounian, Gascia  111, 113, 164 n.2 ‘Editorial: Rethinking Acoustic Ecology’  111 Sonorous Cities: Towards a Sonic Urbanism  113 Pascoe, Bruce  31, 31 n.5, 116 Dark Emu  31, 31 n.5 Pauli, Wolfgang  78 perceptions  3–5, 13, 19, 57, 70, 81, 87–9, 92–7, 101, 110, 112–14, 117,



124, 136, 137, 147, 149, 152, 159, 163, 165 perceptual shifts  145 perdition effect  155 personal affect  88–9, 100 personal unconscious  19, 20, 72, 72 n.22 philosophy of body  88–101 phonography  164 physical movement  145 Pink, Sarah  98, 115, 125, 135 Sensory Ethnography  135 plane of expression and plane of content  35–44, 46, 47, 49, 54, 56, 57, 64, 65 plane of immanence  4, 15–17, 21, 68, 73, 77, 149 Pledger, David  52, 52 n.12 Positive Soundscape Project (2006)  112 post-colonial theory  107 posthumanism  3, 30 n.4, 107, 115 pre-personal affect  5, 6, 88, 89, 95, 100, 106, 108, 110, 116, 123, 124, 163 psychomotor  152 psychophysical parallelism  62–82, 63 continuous variation  69–71 Descartes and Spinoza  65, 66 differential unconscious  71–5 essence and archetype  67–8 intuition  75–7 overview  62–4 substance, attributes and modes  66–7 psychotherapy  20, 21, 76 public art  158, 163 public/transitory spaces  144, 149 QAnon  50 quantum interactions  96 radical music  27 Radicchi, Antonella  114 Radio Music (1956)  105 rationalism  103 Recomposing the City  113 relationality  148, 149 Rendered Imperfectly Rendered (2019)  130, 146, 148, 150, 155 resonance  43, 67, 68, 94, 110

rhizome/arborescence  21, 22, 28, 33, 35, 37, 45–7, 49, 51, 53, 54, 56, 57 Rio Tinto  61 rituals  30–2, 38, 45, 56, 81, 85, 116, 128 Roffe, Jon  16 Rousell, David  5 Ryan, Catherine, 14 Patterns of Biophilic Design: Improving Health & Well-Being in the Built Environment  150 Salter, Linda-Ruth, Spaces Speak, Are You Listening?  58 Samartzis, Philip  131 n.5 Schafer, R. Murray  58, 111, 113, 114 Soundscape  59 schizoanalysis  19–21 Schmidt, Ulrich  87, 91–3, 110 Schmitz, Hermann  97, 106 Atmospheric Spaces  97 Schrimshaw, Will  3, 59 Schulte-Fortkamp, Brigitte  114 Schulze, Holger  7, 32, 108 Bloomsbury Handbook of the Anthropology of Sound, The  7, 32 scientific thinking  103 scientisms  28, 61 self-transformation  20 semantic theme  152, 155 Semetsky, Inna  56, 70 semiotics  9, 53, 54 semiotic structures  8, 12, 19 semiotic systems  21, 47 semiotisation machine  26 sensory ethnography practices  124, 125, 143 Shakespeare, William  38 shamanism  32, 58 sharawadji effect  109 signs, systems of  1, 8–10, 17, 18, 21–3, 33, 36–9, 42, 44–46, 49, 50, 53, 54, 61, 64, 79, 81, 82, 124, 164 singularizations  27 Smith, Bruce, Attending to the O-Factor  38 Snowden, Edward  37, 49 social ecology  11, 17, 18, 22, 64

Index social structures  28 solipsism  64, 65, 71, 72 sonic affects  108, 146 Sonic Arts Research Centre (SARC), Berlin  113 sonic commons  112 sonic desire  6–8, 94 sonic dreams  14 sonic ecology of vibrational affects  4 sonic effects  109, 150, 152, 155 sonic emergences  105 sonic ethnography  124 sonic materialism  2, 3, 62 n.17 sonic possible worlds  108, 109 sonic rupture  12, 18, 82, 117, 150, 154, 155, 163 sound and synchronicity  105 sound art  59–60, 113 sound art installation  11, 12, 111, 112, 118, 121 sound artists  1, 14, 81, 89, 113, 128–30, 132, 154, 159, 162, 165 sound generation and propagation  3, 7 Soundscape  100 soundscape approach  113, 114 sound studies  2–4, 7, 16, 38, 58, 59, 60, 88, 104, 109, 110, 114, 116, 152, 164, 166 Spinoza, Benedict de  2, 3, 15, 17, 65, 66, 66 n.19, 67, 69, 70, 73, 75–9, 78 n.24, 82, 86, 100, 102, 107, 108 Ethics  3, 65, 66, 75 Stanton, Polly  130, 133 State power  31, 36, 37 Sterne, Jonathan  59, 60 Stewart, Kathleen  135, 136 Hundreds, The  136 Ordinary Affects  135–6 sublime experience  109 substance  15, 17, 66–8, 73 Sumartojo, Shanti  98, 115 synaesthesia  143, 147 synchronicity  1, 5, 15, 17, 22, 28, 33, 46, 54, 62, 64, 66, 67, 71, 74, 75, 77–82, 86–8, 101–10, 116, 118, 119, 121, 123, 149, 159, 161, 162, 166


synchronistic knowledge  102–4 techno-semiology  30–3, 56, 86, 95, 128 Terrick Terrick grasslands  119 Theatrum Mundi  113 Thibaud, Jean-Paul  87, 88, 91, 93, 94, 100, 110 Things We Did Next, The  52 n.12 Thompson, Marie  3, 7, 62 n.17, 111 Beyond Unwanted Sound  111 Thrift, Nigel  88, 91 Times Square (1977-92; reinstalled 2002–)  13, 112 Torgue, Henry  109, 116, 150, 152 Sonic Experience: A Guide to Everyday Sounds  109, 150, 152, 155 transcendental  36 transcription analysis  141, 142 translating ambiance  121, 124, 159, 164 translating ambiance research project  130–58 affect and environment  143–50 artworks  133–4, 134, 144 brief  131–3 categories of experience  122, 138–40, 141–3, 153 design themes and contemporary sound design approaches  150–2, 154–5 eight design sketches  155, 156–7, 157–8 ethnography development  134–7, 140–1 research participants  130–1 translations  125–7, 129 transversal therapeutic tools  18–21 Trump, Donald  50 universal white theory  62, 62 n.17 Universes of Value  7, 27, 33, 43, 46, 51, 53, 57, 81, 82, 85, 94, 117, 126, 159 univocality  31, 35–9, 56 urban design  110–16, 121, 124, 142, 148, 150, 153, 154, 161, 164, 165 methods  154, 155 movement  127 processes  12, 13

184 programme  157 urban development programmes  121, 129 urban environment  19, 22, 41, 42, 109, 115, 126, 127, 129, 132, 140, 145, 150, 152, 157, 163, 164 urbanization  113 urban noise  101, 112, 114 urban placement  141–4, 149–50 urban planning  114, 124, 142, 155, 158 urban sound  13, 111–14, 131 art  81 design  11 n.6, 13, 88, 111, 113, 114, 129, 150, 152 urban soundscape  11, 11 n.6, 81, 111–14, 154, 161 Urban Sound Symposium  11 n.6 urban space  12, 89, 124, 126, 127, 129, 133, 144, 149, 158 urban transformation  10, 12, 17, 18, 27–8, 97, 98, 110, 115, 161, 164 van den Berk, Tjeu, Jung on Art  81 Varela, Francisco J.  4 n.5 VicRoads  61 Victoria, Australia  119 virtual sounds  4 Voegelin, Salomé  3, 59, 108, 109, 116, 130, 130 n.4, 133, 134 Sonic Possible Worlds  59 voice  13, 32, 38, 39, 52, 53, 58, 86, 87, 117, 132, 133, 141, 148

Index von Franz, Marie-Louise  58, 101–4, 104 n.6, 106, 107, 109, 161 On Divination and Synchronicity  101 Watson, Janell, Guattari’s Diagrammatic Thought  19 Watson, Julia, Lo-TEK Design by Radical Indigenism  31 n.6 Western civilization  86, 103, 107 Western enlightenment  108 Wetherell, Margaret  5 Wheeler, Andrea  98 Where the Green Ants Dream (1984)  60 n.16 Whyte, William H., The Social Life of Small Urban Spaces  149 wild affectivities  163–5 wild places  1, 1 n.3, 121, 123, 127, 128 Willim, Robert  125, 141 Wilson, Edward O.  128, 129 World Forum for Acoustic Ecology (WFAE)  99, 113 World Soundscape Project (WSP)  12, 111–14, 124–5 Xiao, Jieling  114 Young, La Monte  94 n.3 Yunkaporta, Tyson  31 n.5, 85–7, 108, 116 Sand Talk: How Indigenous Thinking Can Save the World  31 n.5, 85 Yunupingu, Geoffrey Gurrumul  38 n.8 zoë, concept of  5, 6