in the early stages of quarantine, as i walked around athens, i noticed a particular quiet. no cars on the road, no students on the campus quads, and no construction noises downtown. that spring, the birds and bugs and frogs sounded louder than i had ever noticed them. now that the roads and the campus are starting to return to normal, this spring i have noticed the harmony between natural and human-made sounds across athens, especially on campus green spaces.
our communities are tied to one another – we take up the same spaces as the birds, the animals, the insects, and the trees. it is evident more than ever in the soundscapes we walk through each day. i find this auditory tension between human-made noise and natural sounds to be extremely interesting.
this project is inspired by the soundscapes that tie us together and reveal our coexistence with the natural world. i urge you to listen to these closely, with headphones. close your eyes and imagine the creature and the object making each noise, and imagine the organisms that comprise your community – friends, neighbors, birds, bugs, trees alike. i have captured all of these images from my 35 mm film camera. each of these sound clips is intentionally left as unedited as possible so you can tune into the environment in these clips.
a hawk, perched on a lamppost at myer’s quad, 2019.
the latin american ethnobotanical garden is another tucked away oasis just off north campus. beyond the rush of the cars just below, many birds and squirrels make their homes here. the walls and lush plants create a cove around the central garden.
the trees on north campus soar farther up than many of us notice
the lake herrick soundscape is one of the most lively – often a cacophony of laughter, birdsong, and echoes of band practices
while not on the uga campus, sandy creek nature center is another tucked away oasis with the echoes of traffic from the highway. the ephemeral wetlands only appear seasonally, and serve as a home to fish, great blue heron, and amphibians.