Atmosphere of Sound: Sonic Art in Times of Climate Disruption


“Atmosphere of Sound” is a multi-year research project culminating in a large-scale exhibition of sound-based art. UCLA Art | Sci Center proposes to explore the relationship between sound as a post-object art form, and our shifting relationship to the world of things as necessitated by climate change. The culminating exhibition, hosted by UCLA’s Center for the Art of Performance, will present sound and moving image artworks that respond to climate change as the condition of our times. Live performances and a print publication with interactive Augmented Reality (AR) elements will accompany the exhibition in 2024. The research phase of the project consists of artist residencies, panel discussions, and workshops hosted by the UCLA Art | Sci Center on the UCLA campus in Westwood. “Atmosphere of Sound” will be organized and curated by Art | Sci Center Director Victoria Vesna and guest curator, UCLA Department of Art faculty Anuradha Vikram.

Pacific Standard Time is an unprecedented series of collaborations among institutions across Southern California. In each, organizations simultaneously present research-based exhibitions and programs that explore and illuminate a significant theme in the region’s cultural history. In Pacific Standard Time: Art in L.A. 1945–1980, more than 60 cultural institutions joined forces between October 2011 and March 2012 and rewrote the history of the birth and impact of the L.A. art scene. In Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, presented from September 2017 through January 2018, more than 70 institutions collaborated on a paradigm-shifting examination of Latin American and Latinx art, seen together as a hemispheric continuum. Pacific Standard Time is an initiative of the Getty.

Our exhibition and symposium will be organized around key questions such as: “Can we learn to connect empathically with non-human species such that we come to appreciate their value as sentient beings?” “How we might expand our acoustic senses in order to raise our appreciation of the diversity of patterns of communication beyond human language?” “What is the value of artistic collaborations for scientific researchers working on urgent environmental issues?”