This project has been the culmination of many years of dialogue with various disciplines and a fair amount of local knowledge. It aims to broach the issue of landscape perception amongst the community in a qualitative fashion and to respond to the shifting urban form. The role of landscape perception and the effects on spatial behaviour and attitudes, that facilitates the ‘dichotomy’ which Robert McLean identifies in his UDF article ‘Melting the needs/wants dichotomy’ (No.98) is crucial to this project.
Located 6km, from Melbourne’s CBD, the area is well supported by public transport. Traditionally the area had an intimate mix of industrial and residential zones that formed an idiosyncratic physical and psycho-spatial matrix. But the area has been evolving (now rapidly) with off-shore industrial production and local industry relocation. Combine this with the Moreland Council’s zoning changes that have occurred within the last two years, and the Draft Structure Plan, development pressures with the associated increase in population density in this urban corridor is gaining momentum. How will the new residents perceive their landscape in the future and how are the designers and planners addressing the issues of change? Knowing and understanding the relationships between people and their environments is a necessity for vibrancy.
Evolution is inevitable
With the population set to rise by 8,285 to around 19,000 people in the next 20 years with 4,000 new dwellings, this project is grounded in the understanding that the current landscape’s physical and social evolution is inevitable but that there is an opportunity to record information in novel ways for future residents.
Using Augmented Reality (AR) to overlay the virtual worlds via GPS positioning onto the physical site, AR interventions allow viewers to experience different unregulated site-specific bytes of information by launching an enabled phone or tablet. This mediated layer provides an arena for dialogue not previously accessible and, like most innovative technology, may change our behaviour.
The future and the past of the city can now be auditioned on these planes and layers, with a new set of AR senses, thus revealing what has shaped the city and its people from the old areas, social spaces, from business and from our imaginations.
Listening to old and new stories
Listening to the oral history of the owner who has worked in Brunswick for over 50 years, to the sounds of a 130 year old machine singing, the current stories and the old stories mingle with stories of the immanent future stories of settlement change. As we know, the void created by a building being levelled for development can be confronting, yet the memories contained within the buildings and the stories it contained can now be voiced with a strong meta-connection to place.
By engaging the audience with the current landscape composition in terms of time and colour, texture, culture and history, this project allows people to listen with their feet as well as with their ears. Utilising sound as the core material, it has become apparent that the sound itself is as important to knowing and communication as it is to other information and networks: the new meta-ecology.
To find out more and listen to recordings visit: http://repressedmemories.com.au/endangeredsounds/