The Book of the Time-Travellers

…of the Worlds – a Fathomless Zero

2024 – stereo sound installation – 13:20
Music for an art installation by Parul Thacker entitled, ‘The Book of the Time-Travellers of the Worlds: the One by Whom All Live, Who Lives by None’, 2023-24.

Credits: Frank Horvat (composer, sound designer, field recordist), Mohi Bahauddin Dagar (rudraveena), Parul Thacker (creative inspiration, narrator), Svalbard Archipelago (aural inspiration). Narrations from the Savitri by Sri Aurobindo. Excerpts include: ‘Book 1 – The Book of Beginnings, Canto 1: The Symbol Dawn (excerpt from Section 1)’ and ‘Book 7 – The Book of Yoga, Canto 5: The Finding of the Soul (excerpt from Section 1)’.

World Premiere Installation

Apr 20-Nov 24, 2024, Palazzo Vendramin Grimani, Venice Biennale, Italy

Programme Notes

This collaborative work enables a multidimensional journey into the landscapes of the Arctic, transporting listeners to a realm where vast expanses of ice meet endless horizons. This soundscape was inspired by Thacker and Horvat’s shared expedition north of the Arctic Circle to the Svalbard Archipelago in June 2023, aboard the tall ship, Antigua.

The Arctic is visually complex and disordered in its beauty. This is captured effectively in Thacker’s stitched drawings and translated into sound in this accompanying soundscape composition.

Water plays an important part in the Arctic experience. It is everywhere, especially in the summer and especially amidst our climate crisis. Drawing from audio recordings captured during their expedition, this piece seamlessly weaves together the elemental sounds of the polar environment: the gentle lapping of water alongside the ice cap, the hypnotic feeling of whistling winds sweeping across open spaces, the cadence of sea birds, and the impact of calving glaciers. These regularly occurring sounds blend into the overarching layer of prevalent silence, all converging to create a sonic tapestry that mirrors the profound serenity and cathartic energy at the heart of the Arctic landscape.

In the first exhibit of this installation, we are beckoned to appreciate and reflect upon the fragility of our planet’s melting polar regions while Venice’s Grand Canal hums directly adjacent to the exhibit, providing time and place to contemplate the interconnectedness of these two disparate landscapes and all life on Earth.

– Frank Horvat

Audio installation financial support from the SOCAN Foundation.

SOCAN Foundation

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