Broadcasting a tribute

In my high school days I tried to build small fm-broadcasters. It was a personal venture which I developed and thoroughly enjoyed with my grandpa. He was a chemical scientist who never wanted to retire. Born in 1906 he had seen the good and bad of the world (wars) and had the privilege to use big computer mainframes for his new iterative calculations about viscosity and physical characteristics. He discovered and published. I felt particularly proud of him because he did become successful without having any substantial degree. His achievements were impressive as intellectual self-made man in science, but he always stayed modest. Looking back, I realise he was one of my most important inspirations in life. He learned me how important structure is in thinking and doing. And much more. Above all, he was an ultimate example that modesty and perseverance are very important assets.

Our collaboration in the early 80’s was a bit like master and apprentice but we were both novices in electronics. Working zealously with transistors, resistors, capacitors and a lot of solder to make tiny electronic transmitters was not easy at all. Internet did not exist yet so we had to experiment a lot with our oscillators to find some answers and solutions. In the mean time, this 16 year young boy and his granddad of 75 years found each other.

Although the broadcast reach was just a few kilometers, having a sound signal that anybody could hear on their radio was truly mesmerising. In the night I became ‘Blackbird’, which was my broadcast name, and tried to make connections with other ‘transmission pirates’ (the antenna was hidden under the roof) and I played a lot of music while talking through it. This snapshot of my youth shows again that I was always making things and stories in order to connect with others. Few has changed in all those years.

What drives the reasoning behind a specific set of found objects that may transmit their sounds within my installations?

With that question in mind, I realised it would be narratively also interesting to create found sounds from an old radio. In that case the retired electronic parts emit their last sounds by physically rambling against the tins. Their last opportunity to shine.

This broadcasting concept might be of importance later, thus, I write it here to remember these thoughts a little longer. It is strange to notice that now I am getting to the end of the two years masters trajectory, I get mixed feelings: the goal of earning the MA-degree will be met soon, but the foreseen loss of this valuable process will be there at the same time. (May, 2019)