To Intercession (2015)

To Intercession focuses on the dual role bells have played in defining territory and interceding between humans and God, it is part of a series of works through which we explore different aspects of bells and their relationship to territory and culture.

Bells have a unique status among human-made sounding objects. Not only are they one of our earliest classes of instrument but their use and influence crosses almost all cultures and in many, the bell remains a significant, enduring sonic icon in both religious and civic life today.

To Intercession is part of a series of works in which liminal have explored different aspects of bells and their relationship to culture. Here, they focus on the dual role bells have played in defining territory and interceding between humans and God. Just as prayers are often inscribed into the metal of bells, casting them to heaven when played, so too were bells understood by the early church to represent the voice of God. In To Intercession the voices of the women interviewed by Binaural/ Nodar are transmuted into bell tones, which are then played through four tiny speakers mounted on brass rods – tiny transducers, mediating one kind of energy into another.

To Intercession takes its form from the networks of megaphones found in the Parish of Sul, where the project began that play recordings of bells to mark the passing of time and to amplify the voice of the priest during Mass. To Intercession was originally conceived to be played through the parish megaphones. It is here reinterpreted in miniature and in so doing; the listener becomes engaged in the intimate lives of the women who make up the congregation.

Starting with a residency with Binarual/ Nodar in 2013, we have made a series of works that have explored different aspects of bells and their relationship to culture. In Of This Parish –which was both an installation and a short film– we focussed our attention on the role bells have played in the formation of territory and the notion of a parish as a zone of protection and jurisdiction defined by sound. In Report and Already 289ms Away we focussed on the role bells have played in our perception of time. In our piece Transient Parish, we created a temporary bell tower, creating a Parish for the period of just one day.

To Intercession was commissioned by Binaural/Nodar for the Viseu Rural 2.0 Collective Exhibition at Casa das Memórias (Viseu, Portugal) from 28 November 2015 – 17 April 2016. The exhibition was part of the Visue Rural 2.0 project Documenting and [Re]expressing Rural Heritage and as invited artists we were asked to respond to the archive of recordings and videos that have been collected as part of the Viseu Rural 2.0 project.

For more information go to: Binaural/Nodar

Guest artists include: Luís Costa, David Prior, Frances Crow, Antye Greie (AGF), Sérgio Bonilha, Luciana Ohira, Jason Kahn, Rui Costa and Maile Colbert