Hello, the Earth – Knud Viktor

Allô La Terre [Hello, the Earth]

Knud-Viktor3

2009, Digne-les-Bains #NB: la mention ”en cours d’installation” n’est plus pertinente, et elle est donc supprimée

Allô la terre [Hello, the Earth] is a sound work that you listen to in a telephone booth powered by solar energy and installed in a public space. When you lift the telephone handset, you can listen to the rhythms of busy lives, which Knud Viktor calls Petits sons [Little sounds]: a dreaming rabbit; two snails chewing lettuce; the love song of vinegar flies; a fleeing fox; a nestful of tits; a suckling mouse… and all these sounds evoke a visual symphony.

Originally from Denmark, Knud Viktor has lived in the Luberon area of Provence, where he derived all his inspiration for 50 years until his death in August 2013. A forerunner of sound art, Knud Viktor was revealed by radio in the 1970s. Making sounds of the landscape a space of experimentation, he used microphones to record the most unexpected sounds: erosion, the chatter of ants, the melodies of the woodworm, etc. He records the “Song of the Earth” in order to “preserve that which we will perhaps never hear again”. Therefore it is more as a painter than as an entomologist or geologist that he explores the world or rather the miniature worlds. With exceptional patience and perseverance, he records the imperceptible and preserves the ephemeral, to the point where he himself become a part of this environment, an organic element, full of wonderment inspired by this natural opera.

Knud Viktor’s work echoes the Digne area: in response to the monumental Geological Reserve, it replies with a microcosm that is just as spectacular. For this reason, the collection of items from the artist’s workshop have been preserved in the Musée Gassendi.