Energy Matters Workshops (PART C): Deep Listening to Energy Accessibility with Sound Recording Activities
The Energy Matters workshop series was located at the intersections of interdisciplinary and participatory sound art for climate action and justice, involving stories, sounds, word bubbles, gestures, and movement. In these workshops, we co-created deep listening experiences and new soundscape compositions based on artistic activities facilitated by Shumaila Hemani. The content of these workshops will be adapted to tailor participants’ needs, interests, and assets.
We aimed at creating a safe and inclusive space where participants can discuss their work on energy poverty, what brought them to this work, and how it has impacted the ways they understand and engage with the concept of home or dwelling. It will give them a space to share how their subjectivity (age, race, gender, disabilities, etc.) influences how they approach energy poverty.
We investigated the present understanding of this subject within Alberta and Canada, and what kinds of challenges or stigmas people confront in accessing support to ensure energy affordability. To ensure equity, inclusion, and fairness, we engaged the participants in a critically self-reflexive dialogue that ensures creating a space of openness and mutual respect. One such practice could be gathering participants’ precepts around poverty and energy consumption, energy transitions, and energy poverty through a variety of creative activities.
There are many benefits of deeply listening to the world as it cultivates empathy, trust, inclusion, compassion, and more.
1) Initiate a dialogue on energy accessibility by asking the participants to listen to their domestic settings and how different sounds in their spaces make them feel.
Example of a Prompt: How do you listen to the sources of energy and energy consumption around you such as the burning of fossil fuels through furnaces, engines, and more? Can you list the sounds of energy consumption in your domestic settings and how you relate to those sounds? [See the image below for how participants responded on the jam board] [Listen to the attached audio to see how participants described the sounds in their domestic settings]
2) Ask the participants to make any sound recordings of the energy end uses in their domestic settings. Allot 5 minutes for this activity
3) Ask the participants to share any sound recordings of the energy end uses in their domestic settings and why did they choose this sound, how do they relate to this sound, and whether are there any memories that this sound brings to their mind? [Listen to the attached audio for an iteration of this activity]
4) Next, engage the participants in a dialogue about their journeys and work on energy accessibility. [See the attached video of participants talking about how they came to this work.
Example of a prompt: How do you relate to the question of energy inaccessibility in your life? Reflect on defining moments that inspired you to become advocates, leaders, changemakers, and artists addressing energy poverty. (Watch the video below for an iteration of this activity.)
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