KorSonoR is an exhibition-festival dedicated to sound and visual arts, presented in Geneva from September 28 to October 22, 2023. The exhibition is divided into two venues, Le Commun and Flux Laboratory, and two installations can be discovered in the public space. A rich program of performances and other projects unfolds in and with various cultural venues: Cave 12, Comédie de Genève, Grand Théâtre, les 6 toits, Musée d’art et d’histoire. A symposium is organized in the conference room of the Bâtiment d’art contemporain. KorSonoR will be held every two years, with a second edition scheduled for October 2025. More information…
M Sound walk
A Digital application
Opening at Le Commun and at Flux Laboratory
With performances by :
performance with Rose Blanshei, Fielded, Wolf Weston
153 returning birds
Exhibition with Ban Lei, Rudy
Decelière, Kim Gordon, Christina Kubisch, Max Neuhaus, Benoît Renaudin, Naama Tsabar
Tues – Thur and Sun 2pm-8pm
Fri, Sat 2pm-10pm
immersive and participatory installation + invited artists live
5 rue de la Muse
pay what you want
Contrechamps (Martina Brodbeck, Hans Egidi, Rada Hadjikostova, Maximilian Haft, Noëlle Reymond)
5 rue de la Muse
pay what you want
The River Cycle III
Floating footbridge under the Mont-Blanc Bridge
29.09 – 22.10.2023
Tues – Sun 11am-6pm
Electrical Walk Geneva
Public space, information and departure at Le Commun
10 rue des Vieux-Grenadiers
3pm et 5pm
3pm et 5pm
performance avec Rose Blanshei, Fielded, Wolf Weston
153 returning birds
Commented listening session on artists’ vinyl records, proposed by activeRat, Bern/Geneva, presented by Laurent Schmid, with Zoé Aubry, Giulia Essyad, Douna Lim & Théo Pesso, Nathalie Rebholz, Caroline Schattling Villeval, Gaia Vincensini
Asi Föcker & Raoul Doré, accel./cresc., proposed by Klang Moor Schopfe, Gais
Magda Drozd & Nicola Genovese, Viscera, proposed by Oto Sound Museum – Zaira Oram, Zurich
Various records played by Laurent Schmid
Rue de la Prairie 4
performance with Mateo Castelblanco, Jérémie Lamourez, Mordjane Mira, Sylvia Rosat, Bobby Scala
Musée d’art et d’histoire
Rue Charles-Galland 2
free access (entry MAH pay what you want)
Emilie Ding + Alizée Lenox
sound performance echoing Emilie Ding’s installation How High Can You Count – A Temporary Monument on the facade of Banque Mirabaud
Plaine de Plainpalais at 29 Bd Georges-Favon
Symposium on sound arts in Switzerland
With Les Amplitudes, La Chaux-de-Fonds – Manon Pierrehumbert / Archipel, Genève – Marie Jeanson, Denis Schuler / La Becque, La Tour-de-Peilz – Luc Meier, Vanessa Cimorelli / Biennale Son Valais – Jean-Paul Felley / Bruit, Bienne – Jonas Kocher, Gaudenz Badrutt / Ensemble Vide, Genève – Denis Schuler, Petra Krausz, Annie Serrati / Joyfully Waiting, Genève – Nathalie Rebholz / Klang Moor Schopfe, Gais – Patrick Kessler, Nicolas Schaerer / Konnekt, Genève – Nicolas Field / LUFF + Rip on/off, Lausanne – Thibault Walter / Multiple, Zurich – Antoine Chessex / The Music Chamber – artgenève, Genève – Augustin Maurs / Oto Sound Museum, Zurich – Zaira Oram : Francesca Ceccherini, Eleonora Stassi / Sonic Matter, Zurich – Katharina Rosenberger / Sonic Topologies, Zurich – Ludwig Berger / Swiss Association Acoustic Ecology + Idee und Klang, Bâle – Ramon de Marco / Les yeux grand fermés, Genève – Clara Alloing, Céline Carridroit, Marie Jeanson
Bâtiment d’art contemporain, conference room
10 rue des Vieux-Grenadiers
Max Neuhaus, Promenade du Pin
(2002, coll. FCAC Genève)
sound installation, at the top of the hill of the Promenade du Pin
Emilie Ding, How High You Can Count – A Temporary Monument
installation of fluorescent tubes, visible at night, a tribute to Pauline Oliveros
29 bd Georges-Favon building facade, Plaine de Plainpalais
Bélvédère Sonore Geneva
31 sound compositions to listen, each echoing a work in the public (contemporary art funds of the canton and the cities of Geneva, Lancy, Plan-les-Ouates)
The DNA of Arta Sperto
Arta Sperto (“artistic experience” in Esperanto) curates, produces, organises and publishes essentially multi- and transdisciplinary artistic projects. A nomadic organisation, it aims to support and showcase the cross-disciplinary approaches that many artists are developing as a matter of course, while contemporary culture is still more often than not organised by field, whether in terms of cultural policies, institutions, funding or the media. Arta Sperto seeks to blur the boundaries between artistic fields, to arouse the curiosity of audiences and to offer hybrid artistic experiences in different kinds of contexts.
Multi- and trans-disciplinarity is not an end in itself, but an open and plural means to perceive, understand and question our contemporary world. The artistic experiments featured by Arta Sperto aim to stimulate the senses, the intellect and the memory, to increase awareness of people, space and the environment, and to question cultural and societal issues, both individually and collectively.
In 2020 and 2022, Arta Sperto organised two editions of the exhibition/festival Dance First Think Later (DFTL) at Le Commun and in partner venues in Geneva. DFTL explores the meeting ground between dance, performance art and the visual arts, questioning gestures and movements, their meanings and interpretations, in several cultures and through several prisms: sensuality, social issues, politics, technology, rituals and gender.
In 2023, Arta Sperto will present KorSonoR, whose objectives are similar to those of DFTL, this time focusing on the converging fields between sound and visual arts. With these two events on the edges of visual, sound and performing arts, Arta Sperto has laid the foundations for a “trans- disciplinary art centre”, which currently has no dedicated venue and no real equivalent in Switzerland. Arta Sperto’s ambition is to develop Dance First Think Later and KorSonoR on an alternating biennial basis.
KorSonoR in Geneva
Geneva is a city where music shines. Prestigious and pioneering orchestras and ensembles, concert halls of all shapes and sizes, mainstream and cutting-edge festivals, open-air venues, specialised schools—every style and every generation has its own figures and landmarks. Within this thriving scene, some organisations stand out for their experimental, cross-disciplinary approach, such as Archipel, Contrechamps, Cave 12, Ensemble Vide, Les Yeux Grand Fermés, Belvédère Sonore, etc., demonstrating a spirit of collaboration and openness that is unrivalled in other cultural fields. Geneva is also home to one of the rare permanent works in the public space by American artist Max Neuhaus (1939-2009)—who is regarded as the “father” of sound installation. This work, Promenade du Pin (2002), which is part of the FCAC collection, offers the attentive onlooker a unique auditory experience of the urban environment.
KorSonoR is rooted in Geneva’s musical and artistic land- scape and takes Neuhaus’s work as its pivotal point. Indeed, the American musician began his career performing all over the world as a soloist and interpreter, notably of Stockhausen and Boulez, before giving up his concert career to devote himself to the larger field of sound, creating sound installations for built and outdoor spaces. Since then, his work has been showcased mainly in contemporary art institutions. It will be presented in the form of documents in the KorSonoR ex- hibition. His career is emblematic of the distinction between music and sound art, and I am inspired to explore the field of sound art in a way that is different from and complement- ary to what is already available in Geneva. The players in the above-mentioned organisations have backgrounds in the field of music, whereas mine is in art history and exhibitions. KorSonoR aims to explore the resonances between sound and visual arts through the prism of exhibitions, installations, in situ works, performance/concerts, videos and cross- disciplinary collaboration. The aim of the project is to perceive, experiment with and understand how sound is inherent in the human body and in life, whether we approach it from a sensitive, social, spatial, architectural, urban or environmental perspective.
The links between sound art, music and the visual arts have been numerous and fruitful since the beginning of the 20th century. Since the turn of the 21st century, exhibitions devoted to sound art and the relationship between the visual arts and music have featured regularly in the programmes of museums and contemporary art centres. At the same time, sound artists are integrating into their research and practice elements linked to architecture, the city, the environment and the climate, particularly through acoustic ecology, as well as to politics and social cohesion. KorSonoR takes account of this history and these developments and has designed a tailor-made event for Geneva, which fits within a Swiss and international network that it also aims to galvanise.
The central venue for KorSonoR will be Le Commun, with an exhibition and live activation of some of the works. Flux Laboratory will feature an immersive and participatory installation, involving artistic collaborations by several artists, including a string quintet from Ensemble Contrechamps. A sound work will be showcased on the floating footbridge under the Mont Blanc bridge. A sound portrait of Comédie de Genève will be presented in this major cultural building in Geneva. Ad hoc projects will be on display at Les 6 Toits, Le Grand Théâtre, the Musée d’art et d’histoire, Cave12 and in the public space. This rare overview of Geneva’s venues and institutions in a single event demonstrates Arta Sperto’s determination to develop its projects on a city-wide scale, in a spirit of openness, cross-disciplinarity and complement- arity with existing events, seeking to reach several audiences, especially through its many partnerships.
KorSonoR brings together 14 artists, duos or groups, for a total of 28 artists, not counting the performers. Several generations (from 31 to 75 years old), nationalities (9) and cultural backgrounds make up a heterogeneous group with converging passions. Arta Sperto produces or co-produces the creation of 8 works and co-produces the specific adaptation of 6 other works.
To ensure that KorSonoR is part of a wider ecosystem, Arta Sperto is also organising a symposium on sound art in Switzerland, which will bring together around twenty organisations that are active in this field.
A publication including iconographic documentation of KorSonoR as well as original texts is envisaged after the event. Its production will depend on the financial support that can be raised for this purpose.
Arta Sperto / KorSonoR 2023 Team
Olivier Kaeser, director of Arta Sperto, curator of KorSonoR
Marion Huyghues-Despointes, general coordinator, administration, production, communication
Sérafin Brandenberger, exhibition management
Thierry Simonot + Jean-Baptiste Bosshard, sound management
Schaffter Sahli, visual identity
Jérémie Wenger, webmaster
Bérénice Courtin, social media & communications coordination
Sophie Fontaine, hosting coordination, volunteers and administration support
Malak Ojjeh, symposium coordination and support
Emmanuelle Bayart, performance photography
Julien Gremaud, exhibition photography
Stéphane Darioly / Videocraft, video recording and editing
Delphine Cherix, school group visits with École & Culture
Guided tours for groups on request, email@example.com
6 and 7 October 2023
Bâtiment d’art contemporain
Introduction by Olivier Kaeser, presentations and discussions
Visit of In Pulse d’Anne Rochat, Flux Laboratory
Concerts at Cave 12,
programmed by organisations
taking part in the symposium, activeRat, Berne/Geneva;
Klang Moor Schopfe, Geis; Oto Sound Museum –
Zaira Oram, Zurich
Retours Loge by Olga Kokcharova, Comédie de Genève
Presentations and discussions
The field of sound art is vast and diverse, and its definitions are subject to several modulations. By its very nature, the field is multi- and cross-disciplinary, lying as it does on the edges of several musical sectors (e.g. contemporary, experimental, electronic, ethnomusicological), the plastic and visual arts, installation art, sound poetry and certain experimental perform- ing arts, acoustic ecology, whether it is perceived through hearing, sight, the senses or space, and whether it takes place in different types of contexts such as festivals, exhibition halls, concert halls, listening rooms, radio, the internet, architecture or public spaces. In discussions with a number of people involved in this field in Switzerland, Arta Sperto became aware of the existence of several networks with varying geographies and configurations, who share interests and research without necessarily being aware or informed of it. This is due in part to geographical and cultural differences, different approaches and different artistic backgrounds.
The main aims of the symposium are to share experience and knowledge, to discuss definitions of sound art and the relevance and form of a possible Swiss network, to hold one or two round tables, to engage in informal conversations, to discover works by KorSonoR, and to organise an evening of concerts featuring projects from the organisations taking part in the symposium. Some twenty entities have been invited, representing the diversity of sound arts practices in Switzerland. The programme will be drawn up once all the participants have been confirmed. Each artist or group will briefly present its activity (approx. 15’-20’). The presentations, in French or English, will be filmed and recorded, edited and made available on www.artasperto.ch.
(to be confirmed)
Les Amplitudes, La Chaux-de-Fonds (Manon Pierrehumbert)
Archipel, Genève (Marie Jeanson, Denis Schuler)
La Becque, La Tour-de-Peilz (Luc Meier, Vanessa Cimorelli)
Biennale Son Valais (Jean-Paul Felley)
Bruit, Bienne (Jonas Kocher, Gaudenz Badrutt)
Ensemble Vide, Genève (Denis Schuler, Petra Krausz, Annie Serrati)
Joyfully Waiting, Genève (Nathalie Rebholz)
Klang Moor Schopfe, Geis (Patrick Kessler, Nicolas Schaerer)
Konnekt, Genève (Nicolas Field)
LUFF + Rip on/off, Lausanne (Thibault Walter)
Multiple, Zurich (Antoine Chessex)
The Music Chamber – artgenève, Genève (Augustin Maurs)
Oto Sound Museum – Zaira Oram, Zurich (Francesca Ceccherini, Eleonora Stassi)
Sonic Matter, Zurich (Katharina Rosenberger)
Sonic Topologies, Zurich (Ludwig Berger)
Swiss Association Acoustic Ecology + Idee und Klang, Bâle (Ramon de Marco)
Les yeux grand fermés, Genève (Clara Alloing, Céline Carridroit, Marie Jeanson)
KorSonoR is generously supported by : Ville de Genève, Canton de Genève Fonds Cantonal d’art contemporain DCS Genève, Loterie Romande Genève, Pro Helvetia, Fondation de bienfaisance Pierre et Andrée Haas, Fondation UBS pour la culture, Fondation Leenaards, Fondation Nicati-de Luze, Fondation SUISA, Ernst und Olga Gubler-Hablützel Stiftung, Fonds culturel ProLitteris, Dr Georg und Josi Guggenheim Stiftung.