Bernd Herzogenrath is Professor of American Studies at Goethe University, Frankfurt am Main. His research and interests include film studies, sound studies, and media philosophy.
When it comes to territories, the concept of the border is a most crucial one – on the one hand, just an ‘imaginary’ line, on the other hand, a demarcation in which the realities of power and injustice become manifest. In this paper, I would like to focus on two artists and their projects of ‘working through’ the concept of the border in their different sonic productions: on the one hand John Luther Adams’ ‘border-crossing’ performance of Inuksuit at Friendship Park, on the other hand the work of Australian artist Jon Rose, who calls himself a "fencologist" – an artist who has played music on all types of fences, from barbed wires to army fences, worldwide.
Whether it was playing the Mexico/USA border fence in the Sonoran Desert, or the separation fence in Bil'in, a Palestinian village located in the Ramallah and al-Bireh Governorate – Rose, for the past 30 or so years, has been playing fences with a bow. And while people on both sides of the fence come, and join, and listen, Rose has always dodged authorities while doing so: e.g., in November 2006, Rose was detained and later released by Israeli Defence Forces. Rose’s art creates sonic de|territories in situ.
The lecture is held as a part of the project Phenomenological Explorations of Sound Environments supported by Czech Grant Agency