18:00 SAST

18:00  SAST

Sonic Supersurfaces

Spatial and Legal Thresholds to Noise and Silence

Structured grid, ISO Section, possible spaces. Wall of Irony. van Niekerk,T. Unit 13. 2021.
Illegal Sound. Meyer, I. Unit 18. 2020.

Ivan Meyer

MArch 2021

Unit Leader: Naadira Patel
Unit Leader: Sarah de Villiers
Unit Assistant: Nothando Lunga

UNIT 18︎︎︎
Hyperreal Prototypes: Supersurfaces
In the detection and production of sound in spatial environments, this project argues that the spatial occupation of sound has the ability to be ‘claimed’ or ‘rejected’ as a kind of territory. This project focuses on the sounds produced in urban environments and is fascinated by the abstract and ephemeral characteristic it takes on in ‘open’ settings. The legal framework which governs sound rights inadvertently produces the kinds of the specific environments come to be characterised by.

The project studies Johannesburg through the Environmental Conservation Act 73 of 1989 to illustrate the impossibility of actually legally managing sound.  Sound goes beyond clear-cut lines of regulatable borders or edges. The project demonstrates that although sound ‘bleeds’ (occupying air and space in a dynamic and loose way), it is in fact influenced by various material properties like reflection, absorption and transmission along with the very specific, fixed, and detectable spatial boundaries, which are not always followed by sound wave behaviour. This means that sound, although ‘abstract’, is in fact governed by surfaces, which either absorb or reflect it. This project will attempt to illustrate that those rights to silence, or conversely, to the reception of noise, are governed by factors that are not always accounted for in legislation —the rights to be ‘listened to’ or overheard might stand in contrast with the rights to privacy.

Sonic Territory, Sound Policies, Boundaries, Noise, Edges, Binaries, Permission, Suppression, Supersurfaces

Contact Ivan Meyer:

︎ ︎ ︎ 

Copyright © 2022 Graduate School of Architecture, University of Johannesburg, South Africa. All Rights Reserved.