GIHON (a recording) is an experiment in acoustic ecology and electronic manipulation of recorded sound. The title of the recording derives from the Gihon River located in rural Vermont. Eight locations from the junction of the Gihon and Lamoille Rivers in Johnson to its source in the poetically and biblically named Lake Eden were captured on a handheld recorder. I was drawn to this river as a subject for this artwork because I cross it everyday heading to work at nearby Johnson State College. Passing over the river in my car, I become immersed in its dynamic sounds and surrender to a “rural” state of mind.
While I have been a fan of Annea Lockwood’s “A Sound Map Of The Hudson River,” I similarly wanted to capture particular environmental locations. However, breaking from the purity of documentary, I improvised with the flow state of the river by placing electromagnetic coils on different parts of computer to amplify the inner electronics of the machine. This derivative of the water was processed and remixed with the original field recordings to create atmospheric soundscapes. To me, there is a mysterious connection between the microphone recording the river’s energy, the coils/taps converting the recording to voltage and the transducers turning the electricity back into waves. The iterative process of creating the recording is a way for me to reconcile being a digital artist that lives in Vermont’s rural landscape.
In addition to the audio recording there is an accompanying digital booklet. The book is a collection of photographs and Global Positing Coordinates (GPS) from each of the eight field recording locations. The images, taken by Martin DeGeus, illustrates the connection between phonography and photography as both environmental and aesthetic artifacts.
01 GIHON [41:53]