Fishing for Storms

A collaboration with the Arts and Ecology MA students at Dartington College of Arts, Totnes, allowing Soundart Radio listeners to tune in live to a radio storm on Jupiter. 

Alan Boldon, Course Director, explains, “As part of the MA student’s fieldwork project where they conduct biodiversity studies of small patches of earth on the Dartington estate, this close attention to a small area is the start of an ongoing investigation into ways of coming to know a place. Sound artists, Ansuman Biswas and Jem Finer are visiting the course to turn that attention skywards, to fish the night sky for sounds of distant storms.”

On the evening of Thursday 4th October, the group assembled to erect a radio telescope on the Dartington estate.  Jovian radio storms were predicted between 6pm and 8pm on that evening, and the telescope was tuned to 20.1 Mhz to pick up the storm on Jupiter. This storm was then relayed live to listeners on Soundart Radio. 

The universe and its constituent parts have been broadcasting non-stop across the radio spectrum for the last fourteen billion years. Any place in the universe can be a vantage point from which to taste the currents which flow throughout. The influence of the planets on those who live on earth has long been recognised, but many of these supposed influences have lately been ridiculed in a mainstream science which requires hard, numerical proof. In the last century, however, scientific instruments have been developed which can sensitize us to some of the extremely subtle influences of the planets in our immediate environment.

Nell Harrison, co-founder of Soundart Radio, said, “We really had no idea what to expect during the broadcast.  Eavesdropping on Jupiter live on local radio must be a first.”

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