Curious Replicas

It’s a dressing table.

It’s a retro spaceship cockpit.

It’s a voice styling salon.

It’s a space were you can invent a new vocal you.

It’s private, or public, or both.

Everyone deserves a microphone.

Like your voice? Stretch, enrich, compose with it.

Don’t like your voice? Make yourself a new one.

Touch your own voice, old or new. Feel its power to engage the world. Invent a sonic universe, made from….the touch of your sound.

Your voice has power.

Who gets listened to matters.

Grasp the microphone. We’re giving it to *you*. We want you to touch your voice’s complexity. We shape a little universe with it. For 30 seconds, or for 30 minutes.

Freeing.

Cosy and intimate.

Funny.

Like being in a cocooned playground of your own sound.

For some people: obsessive.

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The Southampton Fringe surrounding British Art Show 8 has supported bringing this piece to you.

Where: Civic Centre Lobby, downstairs from the City Art Gallery, Southampton. See map embedded below.

Dates: 18 November to 9 December

Opening times: Monday 10-7, Tuesday 10-7, Wednesday 10-6, Thursday 10-7, Friday 10-5, Saturday 10-4, Sunday (closed)

Activated by Harold Offeh: Saturday 3 December 1-4 pm; Thursday 8 December 6-8 pm

Curious Replicas invites you to style your voice as easily as you style your hair. Add bounce, curl, frizz, wave, shine, and adjust your voice’s body. Tweak its gender. As you do this, feel it caress your skin with changing qualities of vibration – just like running your hand through your hair. Listen to it change on a phone receiver, or broadcast it through the room or play in between – shy adults and boisterous children can all enjoy. Your voice is reflected back to you.

Curious Replicas is a part of our current R&D and early production project: Hands on Your Vibrating Voice.

How are voice and hair alike? Each day, we make choices about our hair. We shape it, style it, or leave it alone. We colour it, texture it, and sculpt it. We regret, or celebrate, its loss. Yet, strangely, our hair is actually dead. It is made by our bodies, and is attached to them, but is not alive. It is of us, but not us, and yet we make it represent us.

In an intimate and sensual atmosphere of playful fun, Curious Replicas draws attention to the similarities between hair and voice. Just like our hair, our voices straddle the genetic and the cultural. We’re born with our fundamental vocal anatomy, but we shape our sounds with the dances of our tongues and faces. They resonate out from us differently due to the differing shapes of our skulls. Then, we add languages, accents, genders, attitudes, and social roles… We style our voices all the time. Our voices are… wigs!

Through engaging with this artwork, actively or as a listener, audience are introduced to another kind of vocal creativity. They mould their voices like clay. They style their vocal wigs. They become someone else – someone else *they* invent. They make their own voice-art. Of course, wigs and hair are touchable. They have tactile texture. So, Curious Replicas lends your voice texture too. Shimmering up through your spine, the subtle changes in your vibration resonate in your seat. Our innovative ultrasound array lets you feel your voice’s touch-qualities massage your very palm. You bathe in your vocal stylings.

In a world where publics are told – indirectly or directly – that their voices aren’t good enough, beautiful enough, male or female enough, powerful enough, soft enough, or controlled enough to be beautiful, to take up space, and to radiate outward, Curious Replicas carves out a space where everyone’s voice can be shaped and styled, just like the professionals’. It winks at long histories of digital manipulation of voice in art, with joyful and immersive sensory overwhelm, and introduces time-based touch art to the world.

Based in our extensive learning on how to engage audiences in digital installation from Yvon Bonenfant’s Voice Trunk – which has now reached some 230K audience – Curious Replicas invites all ages to reimagine their vocal selves and to literally touch their vocal creativity.

Learn more on the ethos behind Tract and Touch’s work.

Learn more about what we are.

We collaborate with renowned artist and hairographer Harold Offeh to activate the artwork on special occasions.

Catch Harold 3 December, 1-4 pm, and 8 December, 6-8 pm at our Southampton showing.

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Click here to explore our page for programmers and curators interested in Curious Replicas,

If you’d like to know more about completion dates and eventual touring, contact one of our producers.

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