Free Radio Pyrenees with Magz Hall And Andrew O'connor






CAMP is a residential arts facility in the French Pyrenees. It's a place where great art is made, new movements are formed, new ideas are explored and groundbreaking people are nurtured. CAMP is located in Aulus les Bains, the last village before the France/Spain Pyrenean frontier chain. The location is spectacular - we are nestled at 750m above sea level, surrounded by snowcapped peaks over 3000m high, ancient forests and cascading waterfalls. There are eagles, lammergeiers, vultures, ibex and bears. Walk out of the residency, and within ten minutes you are completely alone in one of the most beautiful mountain landscapes in Europe. Aulus les Bains is also a spa village - there are hot water springs, and a thermal spa in the village to take advantage of the healing and relaxing properties of the water.
Workshop dates: 26/07/2023 - 2023-07-31
Free Radio Pyrenees is an intensive course on the artistic possibilities of radio transmission and reception, exploring different means of engaging with the radio frequency spectrum that surrounds us, with the goal of collectively creating a site-specific pirate radio installation at CAMP, broadcasting to the surrounding community and beyond.  

Working with several different types of transmitters and receivers, we’ll explore how to use radio transmission in artistic contexts like sound design for theatre/opera, sculpture, art installations, generative sound works, and long-range pirate broadcasts.  Alongside hands-on experimentation with different types of radio transmitters, we will explore the history and context of pirate, community and free radio in Europe and North America, as well as different approaches to extended radio practices and techniques. 

By looking at works that are rooted in radio but extend beyond standard broadcast forms into ideas of modern composition, field recording and acoustic ecology Free Radio Pyrenees will not just empower participants with the practical means to engage with the radio frequency spectrum, but provide them with the tools, techniques, and historical perspectives to create something new with it.

Alongside these explorations of broadcast, Magz will lead the group in the use of Open Wave Receivers to pick up air, land and water pollution in the Pyrenees and beyond.

Over the course of five days, we’ll install and operate a pirate radio station at CAMP that will broadcast to the village of Aulus-les-Bains and beyond over the FM dial.  This pirate radio signal will not only serve as a platform for work created through the program but also provide hands-on experience in the set-up and operation of a pirate radio station.  Participants are encouraged to create works for broadcast, or further develop existing projects using an array of different transmitters and receivers, engaging both the physical landscape and the ether that surrounds us. What ends up being broadcast will be a direct reflection of the people who participate, and the community we broadcast to.

Andrew O’Connor is an independent radio producer and sound artist based in Toronto. His work reflects an interest in sound, storytelling, and transmission, and explores these ideas through formal broadcast radio as well as installation art, sound design, and pirate radio.  Andrew’s work has been featured across the CBC Radio network, syndicated internationally, and appeared at Radiophrenia in Glasgow, and the UK International Radio Drama Festival.  

Magz Hall is an Oram Award-winning sound and radio artist whose work has been exhibited in the UK and internationally, including at Yorkshire Sculpture Park, British Museum, Tate Britain, The Sainsbury Centre, Whitechapel Gallery, Barbican, the V&A, Jerwood Visual Arts, and MACBA Barcelona, as well as events and exhibitions in Denmark, Italy, Germany, Norway, Morocco, Canada and the USA. 

Much of Magz’s work is concerned with art for the environment and the future uses of radio inspired by 100 years of international radio art practice, drawing on her practice-based PhD “Radio After Radio: Redefining radio art in light of new media technology through expanded practice” at UAL London.

Her radio installation “Waves of Resistance” for Galway 2020 paid tribute to Galway Women’s pirate radio and radio across borders - the work was nominated for an Ivor Novella award in sound art in 2021.
A founder of London arts station Resonance FM and community radio in the UK, Magz is a senior lecturer and radio/sound art specialist at Canterbury Christ Church University in the School of Arts and Industries and is currently course director of its Film, Radio and Television BA.  She founded Radio Arts having curated works for exhibition, and broadcast, and led numerous hands-on workshops with the public in art spaces and leading galleries such as the V&A, Tate Britain and Manchester Science Museum. She has been a practising sound artist since 1998, creating interactive artworks for galleries and public spaces, from large-scale events and broadcasts to intimate sound and radio installations. 

Magz has pushed the boundaries of multi-disciplinary interactive sound and radio art, creating expanded radio artworks and multimedia work which includes hand-building transmitters on self-broadcasting ceramic, trees and books. Tree Radio, a broadcasting tree made for the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and her Voicing Gender radio hats were exhibited at the Mutek Festival Montreal and the Barbican London in 2017. Her work uses a wide range of techniques to make connections with the public, using radio and wireless technology in all its forms across the spectrum.

Andrew O’Connor’s work in radio dates back some twenty years, and extends beyond standard broadcast forms, this work has been presented at festivals across North America including Megapolis in Baltimore, the Third Coast Filmless Festival at the Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art, the Vancouver New Music Festival, and La Grande Rencontre des arts Mediatiques en Gaspesie.  Andrew has been a visiting faculty member at the Banff Centre for the Arts, received a commission from the Klondike Institute for Art and Culture for their yearly thematic series, The Natural & The Manufactured, and had his work included in the anthology Transmission Arts: Artists and Airwaves“. He most recently presented a site-specific sound installation for FM transmitters with Lanchonete in Sao Paulo Brazil that premiered as part of a citywide celebration of the Centenary of Modernist Architecture in October 2022.

Andrew currently hosts and produces a weekly pirate radio show called DISCO 3000 on his long-running, clandestine radio project Parkdale Pirate Radio.

CAMP, Rue Principale, Aulus les Bains, 09140 France
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