Soundscapes of Pandemia: Narrative
The project “Soundscapes of Pandemia” asks an international body of collaborators to record soundscapes that illustrate their currently changing relationship to their urban environment in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. We asked our collaborators to consider the soundscape as a portal through which we gain insight to the ways various living organisms, landscapes and built environments are currently afforded different interactions.
This soundscape picks up from the soundscape collage created by Adam Boggs. The illustration of the dog taken from the Florentine Codex has been adapted by Adam to signify the passing of one life into another. In Nahuatl cosmology, the dog is a guardian and guide through the after-life. The mask represents our grappling with the COVID-19 global pandemic. Much like the way Mesoamerican codices are read in a non-linear and iterative fashion, this illustration and interactive webpage represent a hybridization of the ancient codex form while utilizing contemporary graphic design conventions.
The soundscape I created above is a collage of the different audio files that were submitted from individuals across the globe; Sao Paulo, Brazil; Leipzig, Germany; San Francisco, California; Los Angeles, California and San Diego, California. I took a surrealist intervention by arranging the collected soundscapes into an interactive experience that illustrates different environments formed by post-humanist conceptions of communities that are portals to wider networks, allowing for dissent, intimate gathering, quotidian rituals, spiritual prayer and the exchange of ideas for a post-quarantine social order. Here, we continue to follow the dog as a guide to interpret the soundscapes that follow a logic of emotional cadence rather than chronological temporality.
This project also draws on the idea that archival material is something that is performed—thus in considering the multi-modal experience of this moment, we document and interpret ephemeral strata that are often overlooked in the formalized and institutional archival record. For an interactive and responsive experience of the Soundscapes of Pandemia, visit SoundscapesofPandemia.info.
Lili Flores Raygoza is an interdisciplinary artist and researcher based in Tovaangar (Los Angeles, California). Currently–pursuing a Ph.D at UCLA Arts, within the department of World Arts and Cultures/Dance. Born and raised in West Los Angeles–much of her own identity informs her research interests in Mesoamerican ethnoarchaeology, education, corporeal-spatial studies and museum & curatorial studies. The driving force of her research and artistic practice is driven by storytelling as means of performing personal identity and mapping memories.