Wet Sounds

Wet Sounds is an underwater sound art gallery - a deep listening experience. Touring swimming pools, it presents listening sessions to a floating and diving audience in the water. The participants are fully immersed in sound. Free to move weightlessly in the sound space.

Wet Sounds effectively creates three sound spaces in the physical space of the swimming pool. One inside the water, one outside the water and one a merger of the two as the listener floats on the surface of the water. These three distinct sound spaces are chosen by the listeners as they move in and out of the water. The three sound spaces are used to convey parallel narratives, musical and literal.
Sound travels 4.5 times faster in water than it does in air. This cancels directionality in water as the brain does not notice the slight differences in the arrival time of the sound at the two ears. Sound is also perceived through direct vibrations of the nerve in the inner ear which gives the sensation of hearing, therefore it bypasses the outer and middle ear hearing mechanisms. Wet Sounds has had accounts of positive feedback from people hard of hearing that they can hear the sounds underwater.

Joel Cahen about "Wet Sounds"
I see a Wet Sounds installation primarily as creating a listening venue. It is quite unique in that way for obvious reasons, but generally it's also a platform to play sound art works or avant-garde sound work in an accessible and recreational public space. I think there is a definite lack of these spaces in our culture, deep listening is either done in a concert hall, which is still modeled after theatre and is a primarily visual performance venue, or privately at home.

Wet Sounds creates an intimate personal space for listening because you cant chat when you are listening, you are fully immersed in it.

At SPOR 2011 new works created by students from "Nordic Sound Art" will be presented at the Wet Sound installation.


Oscar de Carmen - Anapana1
Cecilia Jonsson - Bridge
Martinka Bobrikova - DPS
Martinka Bobrikova & Oscar de Carmen - EMR-1
Flopper - Elektroakustisk Stråling
Joonas Siren-water-Frequencies-A-Continuation
Lauri Wuolio - Undershadows
Signe Lidén - Untitled
Elin Øyen Vister - Untitled
Jonas Olesen - Vandfyldt Slangevinde # 1
15:00-17:00: Joel Cahen live-performance

In collaboration with The Nordic Sound Art programme, a two-year study programme with focus on sound art. The programme is funded as a collaboration between the Fine Arts Academies in Copenhagen, Trondheim, Helsinki, Bergen and Malmø.
Supported by Nordic Culture Point, Norwegian Embassy and Kulturfonden for Danmark og Finland.

SPOR New Music School 2017