Events > The sound of a picture

Jolana Havelková, Lucie Vítková / The sound of a picture

25. 9. - 8. 11. 2015


In her work, Jolana Havelková is moving on the boundaries of various media. Her visual-acoustic project  entitled Proposal of a score change  came into being through the transformation of scanned notations  of František Kmoch (1848-1912), a Kolín composer of marches, based on Czech folk music. Jolana Havelková has been collecting theses scores and transforming them since 2005; doing so, she changes their possible music interpretation too. The original scanned scores turn into graphic prints and photograms with a modified notation. The layered structure of the scores is based on geometric morphology.

The visual transformation was followed by a musical one. In 2010, Jolana Havelková invited the accordionist and composer Lucie Vítková to collaboration in order to get the interpretation of the selected scores. During more than a year they were making records together. The latter are in fact author’s compositions of the both artists. Jolana Havelková has prepared the concept of the whole project a located the interpretation into several places in Kolín and surroundings where František Kmoch used to perform. She also got the idea to use acoustic objects and instruments situated directly in those premises. In the role of director she influenced to records and the final compositions. The records are considerably shaped by the environment and sounds from the surroundings; they are a kind of musical topography. The authors haven´t limited themselves to such instruments like accordion, harmonica, kettledrums, piano, or organ but they also have been working with non-sounds. All the compositions have a static character even if they feature a rich internal content, just like the scores. 

The output of the project was a CD with 18 compositions in 2013. A detailed description of the project is to be found in the CD booklet or at: 

Jolana Havelková started to collaborate on the second project with Lucie Vítková in a time when Lucie was engaged in Short Form Pieces. Black-and-white photos entitled The first skating reminding of minimalistic drawings (skate traces in fresh snow) became scores – models of these few-minute-compositions.

While composing, Lucie Vítková proceeds as follows: she chooses a photograph and an instrument. She plays it herself in a previously determined way or explains the procedure to a performer. Individual sounds are recorded linearly one after another and in computer they are layered into a final sound picture. The objective is not only a feeling provoked by the pictures; Vítková tries to connect various impulses of the visual and acoustic perception. E.g. the direction of the lines represents the panorama where the sound goes from one loudspeaker to another. She perceives the sound scale on a vertical and lets the instrument move over it in a glissando according to where the line appears. The character of the lines, their roughness or fineness play their role in music too. The length of the composition mostly corresponds to the number of picture elements. 

The exhibition stages only a selection of the works created in the frame of the both projects.