In the framework of the research project »Mapping the Sound Ecology of the Swiss Alps« Philip Samartzis aims at a mapping of the sound ecology of the Bernese Alps and their environmental conditions, in order to demonstrate the transformative effects of climate change upon high-altitude regions.
The project is divided into two distinct phases. The first occurs at the High Altitude Research Station at Jungfraujoch (HFSJG) situated at an altitude of 3500 metres above sea level. A range of sensitive microphones, accelerometers and hydrophones will be placed in and around the station, and the surrounding alpine environment for one month to register natural, anthropogenic and geophysical forces.
The second phase of the project is situated at the ICST where the field recordings will be translated into a series of immersive sound compositions for exhibition, performance and broadcast. The compositions will be designed to provide new knowledge and encounters of endangered wilderness areas to international audiences unlikely to experience these rarefied ecologies and their attendant conditions firsthand.
Philip Samartzis is Coordinator of Sound in the School of Art – RMIT University, where he teaches courses in Sound Culture and Immersive Environments within the fine art degree. He researches in the areas of sound art, acoustic ecology and sound spatialization, and is currently chief investigator on the two research-projects Designing Sound for Health and Wellbeing and Spatial Dialgoues: Public Art and Climate Change. In 2010 Samartzis was awarded fellowships by the Australia Council for the Arts and the Australian Antarctic Division to document the effects of extreme climate and weather events on the human condition at Davis Station in Eastern Antarctica. Samartzis has performed and exhibited widely including presentations at The Cartier Foundation, Paris (2001); The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh (2002); The Mori Arts Centre, Tokyo (2003) and The South African National Museum, Cape Town (2010). He has curated five Immersion festivals focusing on the theory and practice of sound spatialisation, published several solo compact discs and performed with leading international musicians including Sachiko M, Seiichi Yamamoto, Gunter Müller, Voice Crack, Keiji Haino, Oren Ambarchi, Reinhold Friedl.