Listen to the sun!13.07.2022
HELIOPHONE by Aernoudt Jacobs
Everyone knows that sound needs a medium to propagate sound waves. There is no sound in a vacuum. In space there is no sound, absolute silence will never exist for us either. Silence is a relative phenomenon, an ideal state.
What would happen if there was no vacuum in space? What would be the sound in space like? It is probably a good thing that there is no sound in space. The species on earth would have certainly evolved with a different set of ears.
Heliophone is an installation which turns sunlight into sound. In order to create this installation, Jacobs researched the ‘photo-acoustic principle’ as discovered by Alexander Graham Bell. Bell proved that a strong light source can be converted into an acoustic wave and, moreover that any material comes with a sonority that will be revealed by hitting it with a strong periodically interrupted beam of light. The principle of Heliophone is simple: energy from the sun is transformed into sound without electronic amplification. In the design, however, Jacobs combines an array of traditional and cutting-edge technologies. Heliophone follows the trajectory of the sun, catching the sunlight and focusing it, via a parabolic lens, onto one point. There, a rotating disk chops the light up into small fragments. A photo-acoustic cell further transforms the light fragments into sound, made audible by a large horn.
With Heliophone, a sound piece is created for the sun; the tonality changes constantly with the intensity of light. This way, the notion of ‘environmental sounds’ gains an entirely different connotation.
Tallieu Art Office
Tallieu Art Office works in various fields such as visual, installation and new media art, music, contemporary classical music, sound art and performing arts with a special interest in transdisciplinary projects and a
focus on selection, promotion & communication, exhibitions, networking, consultancy, expertise
Since 2014, Tallieu Art Office & Ischa Tallieu continue to build upon the experience and achievements within the context of a promotion gallery. From 1989 until 2014, Galerie Fortlaan 17 earned its position in the contemporary arts world, constantly reinforcing its reputation thanks to high-profile exhibitions, projects, publications, involvement in international art fairs, performances, debates and lectures.