OAZE, an interactive sound map of an imaginary island by Una Lee, has been receiving some well-deserved love in the international press.
EXCERPT FROM THE ISLAND REVIEW
What gave you the idea to create OĀZE?
It all began with sound maps. Since I learned of their existence, I always wanted one of my own. They reveal interesting connections between geography and the sound of places, letting us listen in and imagine what it is like to be there. They let us daydream - what a lovely thing.
Yet as the dreamer I am, being tied to one real region – be it a small town or the whole globe – seemed limiting. I also felt that something was missing in the sound maps I was listening to, which after a considerable amount of reflection on my part turned out to be the aspect of time.
Most sound maps hail from one particular time, which could potentially lead to the misunderstanding that the recording should represent that specific place forever. But for me soundscapes are absolutely ephemeral, fluid and evanescent.
For OĀZE I went around the subject by integrating the passage of time within a fixed visual topography, and blending in the life story of a person through the introduction of one fragment or chapter at each time and place.
The island stands for an entity that is whole on its own and self-sufficient; an independent piece of land holding a person’s entire life, like memories are contained within a body, and sound recordings in a sound map. This is also why I wanted the work to be download-based as opposed to an online map, so that it can exist in its own terms as an absolute thing.