Writing About Hearing Video: Reception and Essay Launch

Writing About Hearing Video: Reception and Essay Launch

An experiment in archival research, exhibiting video art, and curatorial writing

By Lewis Kaye

Thursday, March 7, 6pm

Please join us to launch of Lewis Kaye’s insightful and deeply personal essay on the process of curating and installing “Hearing Video”, a seriously unique project that was part exhibition and part archival research experiment, with the results exhibited at Vtape in 2018.

The exhibition explored and played with a number of works drawn from Vtape’s holdings selected on the basis of their audio rather than their visual content. By focusing on the sonic components of these archived video works, the exhibition foregrounded questions of how technical systems of reproduction inevitably transform the aesthetic experience of the archived media artwork as well as how the works themselves can be brought into conversation and dialogue with each other within a framework of collective presentation.

Lewis Kaye’s essay continues his exploration of definitions: what is curation, what is a community, what is an archive – and perhaps his most intriguing discussion of “an archive as a network and a community” which sees him discuss how organizations and individuals act as conduits for communication and knowledge amongst all participants. Equally engaging is his interrogation of HOWto actually “HEAR VIDEO” – through the body, the ears, the vibrations; through technical devices, cords, wires, signals; and ultimately through ideas, concepts, and words.

Works in the original exhibition by Sarah Abbott, Kevin Lee Burton, Calla Durose-Moya, Vera Frenkel, Gordon Monahan, and Andrew James Paterson


Lewis Kaye is a Toronto-based sound artist, media studies researcher, and educator. His work explores the interplay of sound, technology and culture through both critical enquiry and creative practice. His current research interests include the status of audio art archives and the auralization of “big data”. Kaye’s recordings of sound environments have been presented in media installation, audio CD, video and live performance. Major solo works include Crowds ReSpaced (Signalraum Gallery, Munich, 2014) and Through The Vanishing Point, a multi-channel sound installation based on the ideas of Marshall McLuhan (exhibited in Toronto in 2010, and Paris and Berlin 2011).   

(image: installation of “Hearing Video”, photo Lewis Kaye)