City of Drizzle (Audio)

Dec 09, 2012
Mobile Radio

"Mobile Radio was based in Brazil for 4 months in 2012, exhibiting the radio art station Mobile Radio BSP at the 20th Bienal of Sao Paulo. Their 100-day work came to a close on the 9th of December with a piece called City of Drizzle, made for the seminal radio programme Kunstradio in Vienna. This final transmission was picked up live from ORF in Austria and rebroadcast in Sao Paulo on FM and via the Mobile Radio and Bienal webstreams. Mobile Radio BSP was a collaboration with scores of radio stations around the world, and offered an open invitation to local artists and others to try out ideas using the radio at the Bienal. Mobile Radio also invited a roster of international artists to spend a week in residency with them in Brazil, to ensure an ever-changing radioscape on the airwaves.

City of Drizzle ("Cidade de Garoa" in Portuguese) is one of the nicknames for Sao Paulo due to the especially fine swirling light misty rain which is supposed to envelop the city on a regular basis. In the four months of Mible Radio's visit, the Caroa was present on only two or three occasions. Firstly there was a three month drought and then the summer rains began to arrive, which are characterized by short heavy downpours. The Garoa may not have been much in evidence out side the studio, but their elusive refreshing drizzle was present in spirit, as a strong humidity at times appeared to be on the verg of transforming into an indoor mist. For City of Drizzle, Mobile Radio used recordings made in the environs of their studio at the Bienal pavilion in Ibirapuera Park. The enormous building colored every recording, and each artist's use of radio space. The underlying soundscape is provided by the Mobile Radio Band, a previously existing group consisting of Sarah Washington, Knut Aufermann and Japanese sound artist Jaco, taken from a live performance during Haco's residency. From another residency there is the battle of tuba and Oscar Niemery's impressive architecture by Norwegian musician Borre Molstad who came to investigate the unusual acoustics. As an atmospheric marker, there is the use of the spontaneous imaginary language of Sao Paulo panter Jose Roberto Leonel Barreto. The most critical element is the incredible voice of Carolina Melo, assistant curator for the education of the Bienal, who patiently read through the lengthy first draft of the curatorial text for the 20th Bienal - from which document a few concepts have been dislocated, fragmented, augmented or simply subverted into sound. Welcome to the final outburst of Moble Radio BSP. Cheerio, Sao Paulo" - Mobile Radio