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We Are Forests

Video Details

'We Are Forests' is a sound work that uses mobile technologies to create connections between strangers. Duncan Speakman and Émilie Grenier developed the project as part of their cross-European shared artists residency. In this video, Duncan and Émilie gave a short presentation about their project, discussed the outcomes of their residency, and answered questions as part of a panel discussion.

11 May 2011

Duration: 53mins 19secs

A Cross European Residency Programme

A cross-European residency programme supporting development of We Are Forests, a new project by artists Duncan Speakman and Émilie Grenier.

In a social environment full of micro-blogging and continuous status updates communicated through text and image, what happens to the spoken word and the emotional weight of the human voice? Can we rethink mobile devices to allow for similar broadcast modes to Twitter and Facebook, but through audio?

We Are Forests is a new participatory sound work that uses everyday and emergent mobile technologies to ask, 'What would you whisper into a stranger’s ear'? The piece invokes a shared yet intimate audio connection between strangers in physical space.

In this video, Duncan and Émilie give a short presentation about their project, and discuss the outcomes of their residency. This is followed by a panel discussion chaired by Clare Reddington (Director of iShed and the Pervasive Media Studio) featuring Duncan and Émilie, Professor Jon Dovey (Digital Cultures Research Centre, University of the West of England), and Victoria Tillotson (iShed Producer).


Émilie Grenier is a Canadian artist who uses technology to produce sound experiences that encourages users and audiences to focus on their surroundings. Duncan Speakman is internationally recognised sound artist who has created a number of works that physically and emotionally engage audiences in public spaces. Both artists have previously collaborated on the creation of subtlemob, a series of soundwalks that created filmic experiences for audiences in public spaces.

The project was developed through a shared residency, supported by Watershed's Pervasive Media Studio, Netherlands Media Arts Institute (Amsterdam, NL), 5daysoff festival (Amsterdam, NL) and Kitchen Budapest (HU).

Related Links:
We Are Forests
We Are Forests residency blog