Finissage Inexhaustible Editions: SOUNDING SPOMENIK

Dienstag, 19. Dezember 2023 · 19:00 Uhr

Konzert: Biliana Voutchkova (Violine, Stimme) & Peter Ablinger (Objekte, Stimme)

Finissage der Ausstellung Inexhaustible Editions: SOUNDING SPOMENIK

Eine Koproduktion mit Wien Modern in Kooperation mit KUD Mreža und ON Rizom / Inexhaustible Editions sowie SKICA



Peter Ablinger: An den Mond (aus: „Augmented Studies“) for 1-31 chanting violinists, 24′, 2021 Magic spells for a healthier life 
an „al fresco-composition“ with Biliana Voutchkova

The composition „An den Mond / To the Moon“ consists of 16 short items, magic spells, for voice and violin, most of them layered (up to 31 layers; and in item 9 also an old zither plays a role). Here is (in german) one of the (invented) magic spells for a healthier life, inspired by antique (greek, latin) magic spells found in the book below.

Peter Ablinger/Biliana Voutchkova: DAS ÖKOLOGISCHE MANIFEST (aus „Instruments &“) for instrument(s), materials, violin, voice(s), 2022


Biliana Voutchkova is a dynamic and thoroughly engaged interdisciplinary artist, composer-performer, violinist, improvisor and curator with a truly personal, unconventional artistic language. Through the prism of listening, her early training as a classical violinist and the years of development as contemporary artist-performer, she explores states of spontaneity and intuitive resonance embodied in her multifaceted activities. Her work includes regular concert performances of original/site specific work, long durational and multidisciplinary performances, improvisations, compositions and installations with focus on the interconnection between inner world and sound space. Biliana works internationally as a soloist and in various collaborations. She is the founder and curator of the DARA String Festival and DUOS2022, SHAPE+ platform artist for 2022/2023 and recent recipient of the German Residency Stipend at Cité des Arts/Paris.


Peter Ablinger

Mittlerweile bin ich älter geworden und ich benutze immer öfter eine Brille. Mit Brille sehe ich ungefähr so wie früher. Ohne Brille sehe ich weniger, insbesondere die entfernteren Dinge sind verschwommen. Es stellt sich also der Eindruck ein, dass sich der Radius meiner Wahrnehmung verengt, zurückzieht auf den Punkt, von dem aus ich blicke. Es stellt sich der Eindruck ein, als würde ich ohne Brille etwas von der Welt verlieren, was ich mit Brille noch erreichen kann. Der Eindruck (die Täuschung) ist interessant, denn es fragt sich, was wirklich den Unterschied zwischen der (noch besser) erreichten Welt und der nicht mehr (oder weniger gut) erreichten Welt ausmacht. Peter Ablinger, geboren 1959 in Österreich, lebt seit 1982 in Berlin.

„Die Klänge sind nicht die Klänge! Sie sind da, um den Intellekt abzulenken und die Sinne zu besänftigen. Nicht einmal das Hören ist das Hören: Das Hören ist das, was mich selbst erschafft.“ Der 1959 in Schwanenstadt, Österreich geborene Peter Ablinger ist, so hat es Christian Scheib einmal formuliert, ein „Mystiker der Aufklärung“, dessen „Anrufungen und Litaneien auf das Erkennenabzielen“. Gleichzeitig ist der Komponist, der – nach einem Graphikstudium – bei Gösta Neuwirth und Roman Haubenstock-Ramati studierte und seit 1982 in Berlin lebt, ein Skeptiker, der um die durch Tradition aufgezwungenen kulturellen Spielregeln und (schlechten) Angewohnheiten weiß: „Spielen wir also weiter und sagen: Die Klänge sind da, um zu hören (- nicht um gehört zu werden. Das ist etwas anderes.). Und das Hören ist da, um aufzuhören. Mehr weiß ich auch nicht.“ (Christian Baier)


Finissage Inexhaustible Editions: SOUNDING SPOMENIK

Photo exhibition „Concrete Lines“ and video installation „Stands Still, the Monument by Janez Lenassi“

While the striking still enigmatic visuality of the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s abstract brutalist monuments has been well-documented in recent years, hardly we know anything about their sounding aspects. Most of these spomeniks (original form in plural spomenici, meaning memorials in Serbo-Croatian and Slovenian languages, derived from the root spomen- that means memory) have hollow parts that serve as resonant spaces. The most characteristic materials these historical artefacts were made of are poured concrete and rebar, or steel frame with metallic covering plates. Materials that certainly influence or have audible modifying features to sounds. Curiously, so far, nobody has examined, documented thoroughly and published these enduring landscape objects as acoustic spaces. Besides the spomeniks‘ direct sonic aspects, little we know about their surrounding acoustic environments. Majority of these unique and individual monuments were constructed in remote rural locations, usually far from any urbanization, while some of them were erected in city centres or suburbs, or near villages – all presuming a highly diverse sounding ambiance.

However spomeniks functioned – and some of them still function – as World War II memorials with clear anti-fascist connotation, and from the mid-50s until the late 70s as the groundworks and materialized emblems of Josip Broz Tito’s utopian idea of a strong and united Yugoslavian state with the high-sounding slogan ‚brotherhood and unity‘; we regard these abstract but undisputedly iconic modernist constructions as mere architectural works of art. Peeling off all possible political and ideological layers, it is not our task to judge whether these monuments are useless politicised relics of the former Yugoslavia’s communist past, or significant historical artefacts that still need admiration. As a record label we are merely interested in sounds.

In 2021, Inexhaustible Editions sublabel Edition FriForma started a long-term research, recording and publishing project to explore and reveal the sonic attributes of spomeniks of the former Yugoslavia (those now can be found in Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Kosovo, and in North Macedonia) by asking local instrumentalists – mainly young but remarkably talented professional musicians working locally or internationally on the fields of free improvised or contemporary composed music – to play sounds on-site, and to find the most responsive or fascinating sounding parts of the monuments. Besides the intentional sounds produced by musical instruments, we intent to document the immediate surroundig’s unintentional sounds as well via environmental recordings. Each year we plan to visit, examine and reflect on at least three or four monuments through field trips, recording sessions and eventually, audio publications. By now, we have gathered more than twenty locations with emblematic spomeniks that are relevant to our Sounding Spomenik project. – László Juhász, April 2021