'Transparent Imagery of Sounds'
WANG FUJUI Solo Exhibition
‘透明響像’ 王福瑞 個展
WANG FUJUI Solo Exhibition
‘透明響像’ 王福瑞 個展
The contour lines of iridescent clouds always leave reasonable time for us to observe them before they completely change, and observing sounds bears comparison with observing the fast-changing clouds scudding across the sky.
In retrospect, Fujui Wang managed to present Electromagnetic Soundscape and Perceived Soundscape, two of his breathtaking sound artworks in his 2012 solo exhibition ‘Quiet/Noise’, through which he investigated the rheological relationships between sounds and spaces in contemporary urban life, a state of inscrutable existence. Devoting himself to sound art for over two decades, Wang elaborately stages his 2016 solo exhibition ‘Transparent Imagery of Sounds’ at the Project Fulfill Art Space. He noticed that, as sound art effloresces, part of sound artworks have set greater store by their own visual elements, and the effect of audio-creativity therein has been considerably diluted. Previously, the concept of “audio-visual” indicated sounds as an ancillary element to images; that is, using the former to dub the latter. The connotations of this concept that Wang applies to this exhibition contrarily refers to the auditory sense in a visual environment and the novel experience created by the interplay of visual and auditory senses.
Complex images can be simplified into recognizable and meaningful ones through our eyes, while sounds carry well over the air and echo in the space, diffusing from the images in the exhibits. Generally speaking, sounds are more discernible yet less recognizable than images. Our auditory and visual senses are separated and the connections between sounds and the parameters of its environment (e.g. temperature, humidity) are severed when we exclude all possible visual elements, if not to achieve it by closing our eyes.
As the chef-d’oeuvre of this exhibition, Transparent Silence consists of a transparent vinyl record with spiral groove etched into its surface. The stylus cartridge of the record player travels along the groove from the outside in, setting out on a seemingly silent and tranquil journey of sounds. The coating of the biding dust and the scratches left by frequent use add randomness and uncertainty to the visitors’ experience of this artwork.
Sound Canvas belongs to another series of Wang’s oeuvre. It takes the form of a blank canvas, features the correlations between visual focus and sound transmission, and addresses the question as to how we hear sounds from images. This work consists of a number of independent sounding bodies arranged in a matrix. Each sounding body is a loudspeaker with a diaphragm that vibrates to create sound waves in the air. The sounds are vividly visualized by different timbers and volumes, resembling flickering lights on a plane that shine with iridescent colors and produce a chiaroscuro-like effect. These light spots converge and diverge on the canvas, echoing one another with a rhythmic vitality. Standing in front of the blank canvas, the visitors will be immersed in the flow of sounds without relying on their vision.
We can quickly simplify the spatial complexity into simple geometric forms that are easily recognizable. By way of comparison, the forms of sounds are much vaguer than those of spaces. We may depict a clearer sound space with simplified, spotted sounds. The work Sonic Space therefore contains several spotted sounding bodies along different lines in the venue, creating a dynamic sound space with the vibrating sound waves.
Wireless Imagination counts as a highly distinctive work in this exhibition. Applying the principle of radio transmission, this work constantly emits invisible infrared light beams in an empty space and treats them as the carrier waves. On a more specific basis, different sounds are carried by these invisible light beams, and the visitors need to wear the earphones equipped with a radio receiver, so as to hear the stereo sound constituted by these light beams.
This exhibition expects the visitors to perceive the sounds not so much by vision as by hearing, thereby transcending the rigid confines of visual perception. The sounds we hear are consecutive impressions. The fluctuation of our senses are relative in terms of time and space, which is why our senses are constantly changing. By conscious listening, the listeners may not only evoke their memories and sentiments through corporeal experiences and reflexes, but also position the sounds and the general sound background. The ‘transparent imagery of sounds’ ergo arises from the continuous fusion of these sounds on the plane and in the exhibition space.
——米歇爾·希翁 (Michel Chion)