The work explores various effects of the regeneration of Susaek-dong and Sangam-dong, Seoul, in sound.
Onomatopoeia are especially common in Japanese and Korean. Whereas their use in Indo-European languages is often considered superficial and childish and limited to providing effect, it provides a rich source of vocabulary integral to the East Asian languages where their use is much more common and varied. There are also many onomatopoeia (or “ideophones”) in both languages to describe phenomena which do not produce sounds e.g. how things look or feel and emotions.
Being literally untranslatable at times, it could be considered as an example of sounds contributing to the notion of Otherness of East Asia in general. It also operates in a symbolic realm not entirely based on conventional semantics. The practice of making the inaudible audible developed over centuries provides a fruitful source for rethinking sound and its presence beyond language and the purely symbolic.
Part 1 consists of a video of interviews carried out in Suil Market and the surrounding area. Interviewees were asked to describe Susaek using ideophones.
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The Korean and Japanese languages contain many onomatopoeia to describe phenomena which produce no sound e.g. how things look or feel and emotions. This mixed-media installation is based on this practice of “sound symbolism” of silent phenomena.