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The questions of listening with the ear is inseparable from that of listening with the mind,

just as looking is with seeing.

 (Chion 1994, 33.)


Becoming aware of how individual interpretations and experimental knowing affect on the aesthetics and the way we communicate in art is very essential to me. Being connected to the other is a human way of being alive. Composing is listening, seeing is poetry, singing is channeling. Fashioned by all the numerous layers in communication and aesthetics, I’ve found myself being involved in the kind of experimental crossover collaborations where artistic work has been highly explorative, having the process itself in the main focus.


The idea of being in the process is precious because it has all the value in itself. The outcome is to be seen rather as a by-product of the creative and communicative act. It somehow draws us nearer to the core by the means of withdrawal from the actual goal.

Making Strange is a way of abstracting. Abstraction is an unknown reality, a visual suggestion, rather than a technical riddle. Abstraction denies many of those possibilities of interpretation offered by figurative images; it demands instead an effort of the imagination, a creative response - something that refers to nothing but it self. So in a way by abstracting you are defamiliarizing, and by defamiliarizing you are abstracting, using reality to create another reality that was previously unknown and unperceived by us. it is almost like you become someone else, in a sense: your voice becomes unfamiliar, detached from your self, extracted from your consciousness, and abstracted. You change your perspective by looking at objects from a different point of view. But Abstraction is also about reference to the source since every abstraction has reference to reality. You have to cut the cord to its source so it becomes independent of reality, something new and something different,

unreal in its ‘reality’. 

(Helgason 2006, 6.)



Iho, höyhen, kosketus, irtiotto, puristus, paine, laiskuus, lika.

Happivaje, dinosaurus mahassa.


The list of these unconnected words above by dancer Minttu Pietilä was the starting point for the contemporary collaboration piece called Piirto (2014). The words described feelings and thoughts behind the choreographical creation. Having these fragmental ideas on mind we started to build up communication between dance and music through separated elements that were rising from sound and movement. By chopping some recordings by our sound collective Sound Illustrators into pieces, we managed to consider those musical elements as a raw material to be listened

with a different mind set.


The process of changing the context and making strange challenged myself to listen more to the sound of each tone; how did they act separately or reacted when being newly fused. The music began to draw curves, lines and hues which couldn’t have been reverted back into the language of music nor dance but something in between. 

Working in crossart collectives serves a certain kind of distance that is needed to be able to make things abstact to let new connections and aesthetics arise. Crossover creates an open space to explore and experience. In my point of view, the deeper you go in these processes the more connected, open and honest you are artistically, with others and towards yourself. 


Chion, Michael. 1994. Audio-Vision: Sound on Screen. New York: Columbia University Press.

Helgason, Bjarni. 2006. Sounds Abstract: Making strange, Abstract sound and Abstract listening in Audio-Visual context. MA Final written project MA Media Arts & Communication Design.


Dance by Minttu Pietilä & Veronika Yakushevich

Sound by Sound Illustrators

Concept by Katri Salmenoja & Minttu Pietilä

Supported by Zodiak

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