Andrew Burrell is a hybrid media artist and writer working across the disciplines of sculpture, installation, sound and the written word. He is currently based in Sydney/Australia and exhibits regularly both locally and internationally.
“if you listen closely you can hear the sea”, 2007
custom made wooden box and hardware. mp3 player, custom electronics. speakers, found objects, audio.
object: 18cm x 18cm x 13cm (lxbxh)
click the thumbnails to enlarge the images
short project description
“I can’t see any way around it. Nothing has ever happened. There have been no events – there never will be any. It is true (and I confess that this complicates matters) that every moment has the moments that lead up to it (perhaps with some anticipation) as it also has those moments that occur as a result of it. But for the life of me I cannot pinpoint any one of these moments ever actually having occurred… Maybe I am missing something. “
if you listen closely you can hear the sea is a sound object that investigates the minutiae of antecedents and consequences surrounding a single event in time, and their role – out of time – in the construction of an identity.
Visually the work presents as a polished, black, wooden box, with a hinged lid, that opens to reveal a group of found objects recessed in the unit and partially buried in sand (as one might find in a museum of natural history.) Opening the box also triggers the custom electronics that drive the audio, which emanates from an inbuilt speakers..
The piece contains an audio narrative in the form of a combination of sound-scape, atmosphere track and spoken word. This linear track has been cut into 120 discrete units of audio – that if played in order would define the narrative from beginning to end. In the case of this object, however, the audio is navigated in anon linear fashion,– simulating (if you like) a chain of thought in the mind of the narrator, juggling fragments of memory as they try to make sense of a set of events. The narrative will continue to unfold in this non-linear manner until the box is once again closed – ‘re-writing itself’ each time a viewer interacts with the work.
The narrative itself describes an encounter between the narrator and an unknown ‘other’ by the ocean. The found objects recessed in the open box are relics of this encounter.
The work is completely self-contained and is mains power operated via a small transformer. it should sit on a plinth, shelf or similar around 90cm – 1m high. It has an inbuilt legs which raises it off the surface it rests on, and can be attached to this surface using the provided double sided tape.