Stolen Voices is an ongoing collaboration with Rebecca Louise Collins, inspired by eavesdropping. It is about listening-in, or the way listening is always positioned in space and in time. It is about overhearing, or the stuff we add to everything we hear – the biases and associations that help us construct identities for those who surround us. Finally, it is about the (often uncomfortably) unstable borders between private and public that we all negotiate by existing in common with others.
The work begins by imagining public spaces as semi-fictional constructions, to which the artists have been summoned, as though on a ‘mission’. By attempting to gain access, navigate and decode traces of the occurrence of an-as-yet undefined event, the location itself is acknowledged as host to an already occurring phenomenon. In this sense, we move away from considering perception as belonging to the individual towards an understanding that what is available for detection is already present within the existing atmosphere of a place.
Stolen Voices was initiated as part of the Live Art Development Agency’s DIY artist-led workshop scheme, with support from Sound & Music and Arts Bournemouth.