World premiere in Berlin

Seaphony -
6 May - 8 June 2022
Alte Münze Berlin

Seaphony - The Symphony of Life on Planet Ocean is the new spatial sound & light art installation by Chris Watson, Tony Myatt and Theresa Baumgartner. The site-specific immersive installation is part of the exhibition Seaphony, which enables you to experience the depth and vastness of the ocean and its unheard-of soundscape through spatial sound, light and imagination. Seaphony celebrated its world premiere in May 2022 at the Alte Münze in Berlin Mitte.

The richest world of sound on earth is hidden in the oceans. With an underwater journey from pole to pole, staged as an immersive three-dimensional audio-visual sound art installation, Seaphony takes us along the great ocean currents from the southern Polar Sea to the vastness of the Pacific and the depths of the Atlantic with sound worlds as diverse as the drumming cascades of thousands of the smallest crustaceans, the haunting songs of marine mammals to the sounds of the largest and loudest animals that have ever lived on the planet, the great whales. But the increasingly prominent anthropogenic sounds also demand their space. In the new Symphony of the Sea, they form the breakpoints and disharmonies in the confrontation between sea and man.

The installation with three-dimensional spatial sound interprets the acoustic and visual characteristics of the ocean's dimensions, vastness and dynamics as seemingly infinite into real space.

In preparation for composing the Seaphony, sound artists and field recordists Chris Watson and Tony Myatt set off to the Sea of Cortez, Baja, California hunting for the song of the largest animal that has ever lived - the blue whale. They describe their journey and the challenges of recording the vocalizations of blue whales in The Guardian's three-part podcast, Deep Blue Notes:

Deep Blue Notes

"Oceans are the largest and most sound-rich habitat on the planet."
Chris Watson, Sound Artist & Composer
"Our knowledge of the ocean is a key element for the future of humanity."
Audrey Azouley, Generaldirektorin der UNESCO
"..the installation is one of the very few ways that people can really engage with full 3d sound."
Tony Myatt, sound artist, engineer & academic
"How inappropriate to call this planet Earth, when clearly it is Ocean."
Arthur C. Clarke, Author

Ocean Noise

Noise - the invisible pollution of the seas

In the darkness of the seas, sound waves play a crucial role in the communication, navigation and orientation of marine creatures. Sound waves, which travel faster and further in the water than in the air, are used by animals to mate and find their way through the vastness of the seas. Man-made noise interferes deeply with this communication process; ship sonars and engines, deep-sea mining, military manoeuvres and munitions blasts are causes of the so-called noise pollution of the world's oceans. Invisibly destructive, the force of sound waves sometimes kills marine life directly, or leads to images of dead whales washed up disoriented on coasts and beaches.

In a three-part podcast from The Guardian, Chris Watson takes us into the world of marine underwater sounds and explores the threat of anthropogenic noise:

Oceans of Noise

More information on noise pollution in the oceans and what to do about it can be found here:

BUND Campaign


Artists and team

For Seaphony we were able to win outstanding and award-winning artists: Chris Watson, sound artist & field recordist will compose Seaphony and stage it with Tony Myatt in a large-scale, spatially experienceable 3D Ambisonic sound installation. Light artist Theresa Baumgartner contributes a more abstract visuality that immerses us fully in this underwater world.

Idea and concept: Ina Krüger
Field Recording & Composition: Chris Watson
Additional Sound Recording & Sound Engineering: Tony Myatt
Light Artist: Theresa Baumgartner
Executive Producer: Diana Schniedermeier

Partner: Interactive Media Foundation, Bund für Umwelt und Naturschutz Deutschland (BUND), GEO, Deutschlandfunk and more

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