Eco Echoes

Sound mapping has been used extensively by environmental sound artists to map soundscapes relating to ecology. Because of my interest in water politics and climate justice and, after reading this question by Westerkamp (2002:56) ‘Can soundscape composition initiate ecological change?’ I was prompted to explore my curiosity for sound mapping and examine how soundscapes of water work within sonic cartography as both a method of enquiry and a means of environmental action. I have also been inspired through my research by Astrida Neimanis (2017:171) Bodies of Water where she speaks of the ‘temporal and spatial tangles’ of humans living as bodies of water enmeshed with ‘other watery bodies’. Which led me back to the voice of the sea and how the sea impacts, and is impacted by, other than human beings and inanimate objects and how this can influence soundscape creation.


A video walk-through of the installation, from the group exhibition which was sited at Salford Museum and Art Gallery.

For this interactive sound Installation I wanted to make visible the transformation of Salfords waterways, particularly in relation to climate change. I took as a starting point the paintings hung in the Victorian Gallery at the museum that featured these waterways, and then made a series of field recordings, and imagined soundscapes, in the specific locations, for example Blackfrairs Bridge. I also include locations not featured in paintings in the gallery, that might have not existed in victorian times, such as Kersal Wetlands – created as part of a flood protection scheme.

The human is required to complete this artwork, their touch triggers playback of tracks, and they curate the order in which they experience the artwork

The genesis of Waves began through the In the Making group exhibition, which aimed to explore the artist’s process and draw inspiration from artefacts in the museum collection. Initially, as I walked around the Victorian Gallery at the museum, perusing what I consider to be a very traditional curation of Victorian oil paintings and other artefacts, I could not find anything that piqued my imagination. To distract myself from this irritation I glanced out of the window to the River Irwell fringing Peel Park, adjacent to the museum. As I continued to watch the river meander through the park greeting swans, the overhanging trees, reflecting the sky in its waters I absorbed myself in thinking how I could bring a narrative of this river into my artwork.

In ‘Bodies of Water’ Neimanis (2016) explores the idea of watery relations vs water as a resource and, what she labels ‘Anthropocene water’, where humans frame and interact with water. This theory supplied me with some concepts from which to examine what the River Irwell is or might be: a body of water, a chemical substance, and something unknowable that I want to get to know though capturing its sounds. This mutability fed into both the methods used to record the water sounds and informed my choice of tools for the sonification.

Witness Waters Story Trail

A participatory art project exploring water. Part of ‘Etruria Boat Gathering’ on 10th and 11th July 2021

The Story Trail will be available until the 31st of July 2021. Location details are on the Etruria Canals Festival website

Artist Maya Chowdhry invited attendees to write and record short poems and stories, celebrating water, where it has come from, where it might go. These recordings were sited on a trail along the towpath between Etruria Industrial Museum (with one end at the base of the footbridge on the Etruria site) and the other end in Hanley Park (on the bridge opposite the bandstand).

There’s also an ‘arm-chair’ version of the Story Trail for those not able to make it to the trail

Gallery featuring documentation from the event

Leftover garden

raddishPart of 3 days without water, a Life Friendly Collective Residency.

What if the world was 100% water, how would we grow food?

What would we eat?

How would we survive?

To find out I grew a leftover garden in water with scraps of vegetables from the compost bin of Eighth Day Cafe and plastic water bottles from the bin store of Piccadilly Place.

Leftover Garden, 3 days without water presented by The Life Friendly Collective, at 3 Piccadilly Place.



Water is Priceless

An interactive Installation exploring the role of water in our lives and the impending water scarcity that will affect parts of our planet in the near future.

A hydroponic herb garden, made from upcycled water bottles, triggers animations which tell the stories of water, whilst a barcode scanner triggers a webcam that captures the audience’s image and refracts it into a mosaic of images of water.

Gallery of images of Installation at Contact, Manchester.