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Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field

Three people stand in a room looking at colourful distorted images a power station in Bogong. To the left of them features a neon display.
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field

James Geurts in Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes From the Field, 2021
Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Notes from the Field was a first a portrait of a place – Bogong Village, in the Alpine region of North East Victoria. Bogong is a place of exceptional natural beauty, and a site of many intersecting concerns. Halfway between Mount Beauty and Falls Creek, it was established in its current form as a worker’s village for the Kiewa Hydroelectric Scheme.

Bogong is the Dhudhuroa word for “big moth” and gives its name to Mount Bogong, the Bogong High Plains and Bogong Village, as well as the well-known moth whose existence is now threatened through industrial agriculture, habitat destruction, climate change and other anthropogenic impacts. The discordant relationships between industrial technologies, human involvement and the environment is stark in the unique setting of Bogong Village.

The power station is a major presence in the village, and although hydroelectric technology promises to produce green energy, the damming of the Kiewa River has forever altered the valley’s ecosystem and landscape.

It is in this environment that Madelynne Cornish and Philip Samartzis have been running the Bogong Centre for Sound Culture for the last ten years. The centre invites artists from across the globe to travel to this remote part of Australia and immerse themselves in the site. The artists mainly engage in fieldwork, a process of recording, compiling and organising information, such as sound, video, photographs, and sketches.

Notes from the Field brought together the work of 15 artists who were residents at Bogong Village over the last ten years, with work presented both in the gallery spaces and online. Notes from the Field celebrated the incredible initiative of this globally reaching and supportive artist residency program in North East Victoria. The artists had observed and recorded the dissonance between landscape, humans and technology and presented their findings for us to consider.

Artists featured:

Adam Pultz Melbye
Andrew Tetzlaff
Bridget Chappell
Christophe Charles
Daniela d’Arielli
Felix Wilson
Gabi Schaffner
James Geurts
Justas Pipinis
Lesley Duxbury
Madelynne Cornish
Michael Vorfeld
Philip Samartzis
Sabine Vogel
Shannon Leah Collis

Andrew Tetzlaff: Observations of a falling light

Observations of a falling light is a site-specific installation – a response to Tetzlaff’s experience on the Alpine High Plains. A series of photographic prints showing the Alpine sky have been positioned on the floor amongst
large stones, connected with yarn to the ceiling. The work aims to bring together and contemplate the interrelationships of materiality, gravity, and speed. It considers how these phenomena manifest themselves in a variety of shapes and sizes.

A series of various size rocks onto of silk images of the sky with pieces of string raising to the sky.
Andrew Tetzlaff

Observations of a Falling Light (detail), 2021
Installation View
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

A brown rock onto a sunset image with colours of purple and pink.
Andrew Tetzlaff

Observations of a Falling Light (detail), 2021
Installation View
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

A series of different shaped rocks situated over printed silk fabrics of skies with coloured string raising the ceiling.
Andrew Tetzlaff

Observations of a Falling Light (detail), 2021
Installation View
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Bridget Chappell: The Mountain Archetype

The Mountain Archetype presents an interactive multi-sensory map of the Kiewa Hydroelectric Scheme. Each of the four speakers represents one of
the four power stations located along the Kiewa River in the Alpine National Park.

Using electromagnetic microphones, Chappell has recorded the sound output (between the music note G – G sharp in tuning) of each of the stations, which descend in pitch along with the altitude. Audience participation activates the speakers bringing each power station’s frequency into the galleries and creating a discordant melody.

A series of speakers suspended from ceiling each with different power station names and alttitude attached below on black boards
Bridget Chappell

The Mountain Archetype (detail), 2021
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

 A computer screen while blue soundwaves visible. Connected at the board is a rasberry pi
Bridget Chappell

The Mountain Archetype (detail), 2021
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

A scratch art print of Bogong station with soundwaves and height altitudes visible
Bridget Chappell

The Mountain Archetype (detail), 2021
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

An installation featuring a computer, sensor, speaks and boards with power station altitudes on them
Bridget Chappell

The Mountain Archetype, 2021
Installation View
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Daniela d’Arielli: Acqua Aurea

Acqua Aurea was a four-meter concertina book by Italian artist Daniela d’Arielli. The work was made up of photographs of the four power stations of the Kiewa Hydroelectric Scheme, printed on sheets of gold paper.

The gold hints at a preciousness. It speaks to the Eucalyptus marginata of the surrounding Alpine forests, which are known to draw gold through their root systems, accumulating in small quantities in their bark and leaves.
It is also suggestive of the small particles of false gold that shine in the region’s shallow waterways.

D’Arielli is interested in the relationships of coexistence and conflict within the landscape, fluctuations between the natural and artificial.

 A gold concertina book with images taken under water of the landscape.
Daniela d'Arielli

Acqua Aurea (detail), 2020
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes From the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

A collection of photography printed on yellow paper. Each photography is shot underwater with images being disorted and blurred and flickers of gold shining through.
Daniela d'Arielli

Acqua Aurea (detail), 2020
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes From the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

A gold concertina book with images taken under water of the landscape.
Daniela d'Arielli

Acqua Aurea, 2020
Colour inkjet prints on 200gsm gold paper
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes From the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Felix Wilson: Bogong Field Array 1–36

The sequence of images in Bogong Field Array were developed during a residency at Bogong Centre for Sound Culture in late 2019.

Images of the mechanics of hydro power production sit alongside photographs of the densely forested mountain ranges inviting viewers into a conversation about energy and ecology. The photographs have been taken at night, lit by the camera’s flash or the dim illumination of the hydro power stations. Bogong Field Array is part of Wilson’s ongoing project of observing our illuminated environments and recording their strangeness and complexity.

Dark stones with black and white images of the structure of a power station
Felix Wilson

Bogong Field Array 1 - 36 (detail), 2019
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

A dark photo shot at night of a piece of a hydro station. The photo is placed on top of a small rock.
Felix Wilson

Bogong Field Array 1 - 36 (detail), 2019
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Two men stand in front on small blakc and white images on top of stones.
Felix Wilson

Bogong Field Array 1 - 36, 2019
Stones and digital prints
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

James Geurts

Each of James Geurts’ artworks for Notes from the Field focused on interventions upon the Kiewa River. The damming of the river as part of the Hydroelectric scheme shifted the river’s self-determined trajectory and applied a measure of civic usefulness to its existence.

Deconstructing A River documents the Lake Guy dam wall and surrounds using a modified video camera. The camera’s exposed electrical circuitry reveals an electromagnetic field, disrupting, altering, and abstracting the image.

Electric Water was a series of drawings also generated on the Kiewa River, near Bogong Village. The works were scanned in-situ using a reconfigured scanner, using the technology as a mode of intervention itself – creating
ruptures in the data feed, pulse glitches from the artist’s hand, and colour field abstractions. The works reflected the moment that the water flow becomes electrical current.

Circuitry was a neon wall work that is influenced by the site work Geurts undertook at Bogong Centre for Sound Culture. The pulsing blue gas of the neon, the exposed wires and the transformers revealed the electrical current
flowing through the artwork, with one neon deliberately malfunctioning to suggest the interception of river for the purpose of producing of power.

A detailed view of a piece of white neon shaped into the lines of a river.
James Geurts

Circuitry (detail), 2021
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Three hand drawn images that have been converted with a shaky handscanner causing the drawings to be altered.
James Geurts

Electric Water, 2021
Installation view
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

 Two large colourful projections of a glitching and flickering video of a dam wall.
James Geurts

Reconstructing A River (video still), 2021
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch,

Three people stand in a room looking at colourful distorted images a power station in Bogong. To the right of them features a neon display.
James Geurts in Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes From the Field

Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch,

Justas Pipinis

As part of Notes from the Field, Justas Pipinis presented My Working Week as a Dog. The eight-hour video was a mapping of Bogong Village with a small terrier, Archie, as a guide.

Justas Pipinis was an artist in residence at Bogong Centre for Sound Culture in 2020. Like his fellow artists in the exhibition, Pipinis used his time at Bogong to record the environment around the Village. Where his project
departs is in using Archie as a camera dog. Nightly walks around the village and the lake become fieldwork sessions with a camera mounted to Archie. This playful shift in perspective unsettles categories and conventions of fieldwork and invites audience to see the world anew.

My Working Week as a Dog is avaliable to watch on the Bogong Centre for Sound Culture website.

A man in a leather jacket and glasses clutches a medium size brown dog
Justas Pipinis portrait

Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Lesley Duxbury

This collection of work was made during several residencies at Bogong Centre for Sound Culture, compiled from photographs and written notes gathered from walks around Lake Guy. This source material was
later manipulated and compiled to create large-scale images and artist books.

Rudimentary photographic techniques had been employed, including the use of a Black Mirror, a slightly convex, hand-sized black lens that was widely used by artists in the 18th and 19th centuries to contemplate, reconfigure and record the landscape.

Two large concertina books each containing photographs and fieldnotes from mount bogong
Lesley Duxbury in Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field,

Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

 A series of enlarged images of rocks with a small mirror visible. In the distance two large concertina photo books with a mirror on the front.
Lesley Duxbury in Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field

Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

 Large photographs and photobooks shot in nature with a mirror in the middle of the images.
Lesley Duxbury in Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field

Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Madelynne Cornish: Village Loop

Village Loop was an audio visual work investigating the eco-acoustic characteristics of Bogong Village. The work was an attempt to express the experience of isolation while living in a remote community (of few permanent residents).

Using an iterative process of documentation, various details and characteristics were recorded each day to reveal changes in atmosphere, variations in habitat, and processes of land management. The editing process included temporal disruptions and colour alteration to fracture the image quality to convey the psychological experience of isolation.

 A series of videos screens depicting Bogong Village showcasing the emptiness of the town and the surronding paths and forest
Madelynne Cornish

Village Loop (detail), 2021
Installation view
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

: A series of tv screens displaying the empty area around Bogong Village and empty rooms due to Covid
Madelynne Cornish

Village Loop, 2021
Installation view,
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Michael Vorfield

KONTAKT was an installation of incandescent lamps controlled by electrical switching units that work independently of one another. The sounds of the light controlling elements are acoustically amplified. Like some luminous organism, groups of bulbs light up in short bursts, creating a continuously
changing visual and acoustic rhythm.

Alongside KONTAKT was FELD, a set of nine images that combined photography and drawings to visually represent Vorfeld’s ongoing series of light and sound performances, Light Bulb Music. Each print shows a different part of the complex circuitry that goes into the performances. A new work from the Light Bulb Music series, titled SILHOUETTE has been created for Notes from the Field and is viewable online.

Two women in dresses walk by a collection of light globes on the floor that flash in various patterns
Michael Vorfield in Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field

Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Large prints of drawings of lights and technology such a power points and speakers.
Michael Vorfield

FELD (FIELD), 2017
Installation view
Bogong Centre for Song Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Philip Samartzis: Atmospheres and Microclimates

Atmospheres and Microclimates is a multichannel sound
composition that is audible throughout the Notes from
the Field exhibition.

The work draws upon the Bogong Centre for Sound Culture archives and comprises natural, atmospheric and anthropogenic sounds. The composition is designed to expand the understanding of the eco-acoustic characteristics of the Bogong High Plains, and how they are being transformed by warming temperatures, dynamic weather, and increased anthropogenic activity.

A man uses different tubes and objects to create different sounds
Philip Samartzis

Electric Fields
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum Albury
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Shannon Leah Collis: Kiewa

Kiewa depicts the impact on the Kiewa Valley of the most expansive hydroelectric project in Victoria. Kiewa began as a two-week residency at Bogong Centre for Sound Culture for Canadian artist Collis, who gathered audio field recordings and video footage from the region. This approach allowed for an unscripted process of listening, recording, and reacting to variable conditions. Audiences were encouraged to approach the work and experience it as a sensory space.

 A person standing in front of a black and white projection that overlays footage of Kiewa Valley
Shannon Leah Collis

Kiewa, 2020
Installation view
Bogong Centre for Sound Culture: Notes from the Field, Murray Art Museum, 2021
Image by Jeremy Weihrauch

Exhibitions