On a commission of "Notes & Quotas" program 2021 Audio and video recordings were made in Switzerland (Basel Land, water reservoire in Bruderholz) during "Pro Helvetia" research trip in 2021 and in Russia (Moscow, Rachmaninov Hall of Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory
Since what the specter argues, with its choirboy-like voice, is that if all the cities and all the languages of Europe now survive only as phantasms, then only those who have understood these most intimate and most familiar deeds, only those who recite and record the discarnate words and stones, will perhaps be able one day to reopen that breach in which history – in which life – suddenly fulfills its promise.
G. Agamben. "Nudities". On the Uses and Disadvantages of Living among Specters
Artistic fundamentals Paradoxically, a mirage is not a deception or a hallucination – it is a vision that is related to physical reality. Sometimes, the reality may disappear (literally or metaphorically), but the reflection remains. A mirage "reflects" a distant world. To reproduce means to "read" and bring closer from the distant, ghostly world (invisible, incorporeal) to the close, "existing" and corporeal world.
The structure of the acoustic - spatial mirage An acoustic-spatial mirage, in my understanding, is a dual phenomenon. On the one hand, it is an acoustic phenomenon occuring in one real space. On the other hand, it is a reproduction of this phenomenon along with its "reflection" in another real space.
The basis of the structure of the mirage is simultaneity. By simultaneity, I mean the superposition of two space-territories: pre-recorded (or modeled by analogy) and space-territory on which the "reflection" is presented. The viewer finds himself in a situation of simultaneity of two space-territories: the territory of the acoustic phenomenon is superimposed on the territory of "reflection". In other words, the territory of the "reflection" becomes the territory of the acoustic phenomenon, or vice versa – the territory of the acoustic phenomenon becomes the territory of "reflection".
What in this case can be an acoustic-spatial phenomenon? This is an acoustic phenomenon that has a three-dimensional spatial localization (that is, it literally covers the territory needed for the experiment). It is also important for me that this acoustic phenomenon has a temporal extension, that is, it "spreads out" or gradually changes over the territory so that it can be "observed" (as we observe mirages). The effect of the experiment can be compared with an acoustic-visual "walk" through the territory.
State of uncertainty At the same time, the viewer is also faced with the simultaneity of fiction and reality. By fiction here I mean the media reproduction of an acoustic-spatial phenomenon - what the viewer hears (in the recording) and sees. However, one's perception also flickers and tosses between what is considered fictitious and what is "real", since neither one nor the other is precisely defined. When the spaces mix, fiction ceases to be only fiction, and reality ceases to be only reality. They return their uncertainty, which allows a space to be pushed apart, to deprive "this" space of its density, to turn it into a portal to other real places, discovering a shift: whether it is reality becoming fiction or whether it is fiction becoming reality.
Mirage I. Water reservoire in Bruderholz (Basel, Switzerland) Mirage II. Rain
Special thanks to Anja Wernicke, Tanya Zborowski, Ayesha Schnell, Stephanie Müller
World premiere: 25.04.2022 Rachmaninov Hall of Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory Studio for New Music Ensemble
06.09.2022 Gym of Sanatorium "Kamsky Zori" in Tchaikovsky city Moscow Contemporary Music Ensemble (MCME)