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Mar 28, 2024 / 21:04

Sound installation to explore history

The research project on archiving and sound installation by Vietnamese and international artists aims to bring a new historical approach to the public in Hanoi.

The sound installation called “Hồi Sóng” by two composers and experimental sound artists Nguyen Nhung and Zach Sch is on display at Manzi Exhibition Space, Lane 2, Hang Bun Street in Hanoi, until April 7.

The art project "Hồi Sóng," consisting of an archival study and sound installation by two Vietnamese artists, Nhung Nguyễn and Zach Sch, is available both digitally at and physically at Manzi Exhibition Space for free admission.

 The poster of the event.

From the initial intention of exploring the intangible cultural heritage, specifically the oral history documented in historical archives, the artist duo adopts sound installation as a medium to explore the relationships between archived information and sound art.

Originally, the project focused on the lives of soldiers and workers from French colonies in Africa and Vietnam, but it has since expanded to include historical brushstrokes of the peoples of Egypt, Algeria, Mali, Martinique and Indochina (composed of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia) and their wartime missions, living conditions, feelings and memories evoked 80 years after the end of the Second World War.

Accordingly, the installation work aims to juxtapose the archival materials on the aforementioned topics with music and sound design. The artist duo evaluates the respective socio-cultural contexts of the archives and their accompanying literary and musical materials to architect the recordings. While Nhung focuses on oral histories, Zach places more emphasis on sound experiments.

Manzi Exhibition Space in Hanoi. Photo: Manzi

Presented at Manzi as a second physical counterpart to the online platform (the first installation was launched at San Art, HCMC in 2021), the exhibition will offer an exciting reboot of the archive, inviting audiences to join in and tune in to the sounds, immerse themselves in the radio installation, and interact with artifacts of a dim and distant past that has barely been told.

Nhung Nguyen is an emerging Vietnamese sound artist currently based in Hanoi, experimenting across a range of left-field aesthetics and expressions – ambient drone, electro-acoustic, noise music, and musique concrete, amongst others. Since 2014 Nhung has been making works under the moniker Sound Awakener – and under her real name, for the more cinematic, piano-driven projects. She has worked with international labels such as Time Released Sound (US), Unknown Tones Records (US), and others.

 Vietnamese sound artist Nhung Nguyen. Photo: Đan

Zach Sch is a sound artist, composer, and member of the Ho Chi Minh City-based collective Rắn Cạp Đuôi.  His current practice seeks points of dialog between composition and the visceral, textural capacity of sound. This includes the physicality of sound as an environmental medium and the exploration of new dynamics in compositional structure and sound design.

The art project "Hồi Sóng" is supported by the Goethe-Institut Ho Chi Minh City, the  Japan Foundation Center for Cultural Exchange in Vietnam, the Nguyen Thien Dao Foundation, "Sàn" Art and the Humboldt University of Berlin.