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WWS conference

Exhibiting Sounds of Changes

Tampere, 12-13th of June 2018


In museums, we do have paintings, photographs and all sorts of items. They tell our visitors what things used to look like in the past. Few museums use sounds for their collections and exhibitions. However, museum exhibitions cannot only be experienced visually, but also by hearing. But, it is not only a question of bad planning and a lack of technology: we simply do not know enough about sounds as sources and as medium.

In 2013, six European museums started to record endangered and disappearing sounds of industrial society. The “Work with Sounds”-project (2013-2015) was soon followed by the “Sounds of Changes”-project (2017–2019), both were funded by Creative Europe programme. In these projects we have collected a great archive of historical sounds that can be used for free from www.workwithsounds.eu. All the sounds are licensed under Creative Commons and can be found in Europeana and Wikimedia.

The Sounds of Changes project, WORKLAB (International Association of Labour Museums) and The Finnish Labour Museum are organising a summer conference, 12th-13th of June 2018, in Tampere. The two-day conference will focus on sounds of industrial, social and technical culture. How can we present and preserve sounds in museums?

We encourage all museum professionals, researchers and exhibition designers to submit papers that relate to the wide themes of exhibitions, sounds and history. We welcome theoretical approaches as well as practical case studies, tools and best practices. Papers presented at the conference are invited to share innovative ideas, experiences of trying new things, successes, opportunities and failures dealing with one or some of the following topics:

- Using sound technology in exhibitions
- Visitors and sounds
- Soundscapes, silence and noise in museum exhibitions
- Historical sounds of everyday life
- Sounds in/as exhibition narratives
- Authenticity of museum sounds
- Sounds, hearing and inclusion
- Historical and recreated speech acts in exhibitions
- How to find the right sounds?

The Call for Papers is open until 31st of March 2018. If you would like to present your project please send your proposal (200-300 words) along with a brief professional profile (100-200 words) to: soundsofchanges@tyovaenmuseo.fi.

The conference will take place at The Finnish Labour Museum in Tampere. Participation is without a fee; however travel, accommodation and daily living are at your expense. Tampere is a lively city located in southern Finland. It can be reached from Helsinki airport by a two-hour train connection. The programme will include paper presentations, keynote speeches and social activities in summery (and cool) Finland.

Updated info can be found on WORKLAB website www.worklab.info and soon on the project site www.workwithsounds.eu.

“Sounds of Changes” is a EU project funded by Creative Europe program (2017–2019). It is a joint effort of six museums: Swedish Air Force Museum (Sweden, project leader), Muzeum Inżynierii Miejskiej (Poland), LWL-Industriemuseum (Germany), Museum of Work (Sweden), Technical Museum of Slovenia and The Finnish Labour Museum. Museums are collecting, interpreting and disseminating endangered sounds and soundscapes together. See more at www.workwithsounds.eu.

WORKLAB – The International Association of Labour Museums is a dynamic network founded in 1997. Today, this network has more than 30 member museums from four continents. WORKLAB museums represent a lively scale of museums interested in social, industrial and labour heritage. Network organizes conferences, projects and publications. WORKLAB meetings are open for everyone. See more at www.worklab.info.

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Work With Sounds-Conference 2015

The conference takes place 19.-21.8.2015 in the headquarters of the LWL-Industriemuseum in Dortmund, Germany.
There will be sections on sounds and soundscapes of Europe, on urban sounds, museum sounds, reflecting sounds and working with sounds.

In 1971 the composer and sound researcher R. Murray Schafer started the “World Soundscape Project,” which was devoted to the comparative study of soundscapes. The driving impulse behind his project was the realization that industrialization and urbanization brought about a drastic change in the acoustic environment. The issue of the acoustic environment remained unaddressed by the scholarship long after. But gradually the arts, humanities and cultural institutions are beginning to turn their attention towards the cultural meanings of sounds and listening.

What was the soundscape of industrialization? How does it differ from the soundscape today? Has the volume of our environment increased or decreased? When did people begin to perceive urban and industrial sounds as a nuisance? When did people start measuring the acoustic environment? Where and why have sounds turned into acoustic codes? What role does the technical reproducibility of the acoustic play? Which sounds are carved into the acoustic memory? What significance can sounds have for the identity of individuals, collectives or even nations? What sources can be used for a comprehensive Sound History? How do museums deal with the acoustic cultural heritage and how can they impart it? What are the benefits of publicly accessible sound collections and who would make use of them?

The final conference of the EU-Project “Work with Sounds” in 2015 brings together sound projects from museums, archives, universities and media to share their experiences with recording, conserving, exploring and using the sounds and soundscapes of Europe. In panels on urban sounds, museum sounds, reflecting sounds and working with sounds the conference wants to present and discuss theories and practices in the history and anthropology of sound, the importance and meaning of sound, and the potential of working with sounds – internationally and interdisciplinary.

Work with Sounds conference venue in Dortmund, Germany.  Photo: A. Hudemann.

Work with Sounds conference venue in Dortmund, Germany. Photo: A. Hudemann.





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All sounds on Workwithsounds.eu are downloadable and free to use wherever you want. Credits have to be given to the person who recorded the sound.

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