Questions Peter Lenaerts 2014
Is there a difference between a photographer wearing glasses and a musician wearing a hearing aid?
Why can we sit down to read a book but need to move around while listening to music?
Why can we sit through a 2 hour film but have a hard time focusing on half an hour of listening?
What’s the first sound we hear before we’ve even been born?
What’s the last sound we hear before we croak?
Is seeing objective and hearing subjective?
Or is it the other way around?
And why did Marcel Duchamp rewrite his famous quote from 1914 "One can look at seeing, one can’t hear hearing” as a question "One can see looking. Can one hear listening, smell smelling, etc…?" in 1948?
Most of us are surrounded by sound all of the time. Some of it we hear, some of it we chose to ignore, most of it passes us by unnoticed. It is there, but we don’t hear it until we decide to listen to it.
Listening is almost always an active act, a choice. Most of us don’t do it very often, especially not when there’s nothing to see. And yet we are surrounded by sound all the time, in life and in art. You cannot turn off sound, it’s always there.
So why aren’t we listening?
Peter Lenaerts is fascinated by empty spaces and invisible sound. Sound that doesn’t scream for attention but sneaks into the listener’s ear unnoticed. Sound without ego, pure sound. For his last work Quies, he travelled through the Australian desert on an ironic and absurd quest for quiet. The result can be experienced as an album of recordings, a documentary film, an installation and a performance. Apart from his own work, he has created sound and music scores for choreographers, filmmakers and visual artists including Mette Ingvartsen, Andros Zinsbrowne, Salva Sanchis, Tom Heene. Peter Lenaerts strongly believes that in a culture dominated by visuals, nothing is as powerful, intense, and rewarding as closing your eyes and simply listening.