CNMN > Projects > Energy Matters Workshops (PART C): Deep Listening to Energy Accessibility with Sound Recording Activities

Shumaila Hemani

  • Voice
  • Acoustic instruments

90 minutes

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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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