Terra incognita began as research into parallel uses of cities and back streets. Generally when we walk in cities, we tend to follow itineraries we are familiar with, we walk through town to go shopping, to go to work, etc, but we stick to the routes we know. Unless in a foreign city as a tourist, we rarely consider our cities as unknown, we rarely take a street because we've never been down there before.
As a mechanism to renew the experience of the city, we created an audio guide that takes the listener through a given itinerary whilst keeping the pleasure of discovery closer to the flâneur.
The audio guide comprises of the recording of footsteps and a voice giving directions and indications of where to turn and when to stop, the only indication the listener has to find their way. The footsteps are recorded in an non urban environment (choice of inside Glasgow XiXth Century City Hall, or in the hills) and the ambient sounds of these environments match the changes of spaces or incidents that the listener encounter whilst walking along the itinerary. For example, you might be walking along a back street and passing by a broken drain pipe, and you are hearing - if you chose the countryside sound- the sound of a stream increasing and decreasing, matching the exact location of the drain pipe.
This superimposition of visual experience and displaced but matching perfectly audio experience, creates a walk through an environment that might be familiar but is suddenly transformed. A simple walk through the city centre is changed into an almost cinematographic experience.
Alongside the audio piece, we created Glasgow landscape, a map of Glasgow city centre incorporating the building as part of the topography.
The installation was created as a Royal Incorporation of Architects, Scotland, Millennium Award
Hosted by the Lighthouse, Scotland Centre for Design and Architecture.
The sound was edited by BBC Radio Scotland, The Arts Show