SOUNDOBJECT

This event was a collaboration between Information Experience Design and Design Products programmes at the Royal College of Art, in partnership with Sonos. The works explored how sound mediates interactions between people, objects and environments.

Further details at: www.rcasoundobject.com

Sound and listening are socially defined activities, people listen when alone, in family and friend groups, and in diverse contexts. What people choose to listen to is also reflective of social structures and shared understandings. The design of the objects intended to deliver sound related experiences needed to take account of the highly textured relationship between the senses, and between individual and group behaviour. There is a dynamic relationship present between people and sounds, objects and technology that is rich and complex .

Sound is also a medium, deployed in the diverse cultural forms found in music, or sound art. These are culturally determined forms with a huge variety of categories and genres. Many of the sounds that surround us, such as station announcements or birdsong, pass through perception – they form the background noise of our lives. Manipulating this soundscape to reveal undetected sounds or configuring an environment in which they can be directly experienced are explicit aims of sound designers. Soundobject engaged with this approach. It offered the chance for students to work with other students from different programmes, to learn about critical making, develop prototypes, and carry out creative design research.