sonic archeology lab w/ Martin Howse

8 Dec 2012
9 Dec 2012

Learn DIY techniques for making the material and paraphysical world audible. Laser sonifications of chemical reactions, EWP, and electromagnetic probing.


Martin Howse Sonic Archeology workshop -


Advanced registration is required for this workshop. More information and online registration is available at the event page on

STEIM is happy to welcome London/Berlin-based artist Martin Howse to lead a two-day workshop on sonic archeological techniques. Sonic archeology, essentially, is the exploratory probing of phenomena through sonic amplification, creating audible maps of otherwise un-detectable events in the natural world. Examples range from the early phonographic experiments of Thomas Edison to the more paraphysical realm of EVP (electronic voice phenomena).

This hands-on workshop aims to equip the sonic archaeologist with a range of DIY techniques for forensic examination of the material and immaterial. A series of experimental situations will be established: probing both sides of material and immaterial, investigation through audible excitation, transformation and detection (ultrasound, infrasound, interference, light, surface playback, electrochemistry). The workshop will equally examine classical techniques of EVP (electronic voice phenomena) as well as new practices suggested by these strategies of detection.

During the workshop participants will learn to:
- practically stage classical EVP detection experiments (Juergenson, Raudive and beyond)
- construct a quantum metaphase typewriter for communication with parallel worlds
- build devices to play back and decode surface marks and inscriptions
- make audible fluctuations in laser light and electrochemical reactions
- translate ultrasonic impulses to the audio range
- work with the active construction of electromagnetic emissions

Dates: Dec 8-9, 2012
Time: 11:00 – 18:00 (each day)
Cost: €70 (includes materials)
Location: STEIM, Achtergracht 19, 1017WL Amsterdam
Maximum Participants: 15

“The pick was [then] used to hammer on the surface, and by this means,
the Angle Ditch was discovered. The sound produced by hammering on an excavated part is much deeper than on an undisturbed surface, a circumstance worth knowing when exploring a grass-grown downland, though not applicable to cultivated ground.”
-[Augustus Pitt Rivers. Excavations in Cranborne Chase. Volume IV. 1895]

Sound can be conceived as the expression of material undergoing specific physical stresses. As the earth is tapped with the back of the shovel, or as the cast metals of rail tracks are subjected to immense forces by the wheels of an arriving high speed train, information is revealed concerning the often less than visible strains and molecular interactions of the material world. It’s a strictly epistemological investigation, equally providing forensic material concerning an immaterial, invisible world; material for a certain psychic detective seeking to make sense of the world. Following Pitt Rivers, this sonic archaeology can be summarised as excitation followed by detection.


We recommend that participants bring along some form of recording, inscribing, or transcribing devices (tape or digital audio recorder, camera, film, pencil, paper, and so on). Headphones are also useful to bring! All other materials will be supplied by STEIM and are included in the registration fee.


Programmer, writer, performer and explorer Martin Howse founded the ap project in 1998 to implement a truly artistic operating system (OS) in its most expanded sense. ap projects have included the ap02 distributed code-creation software developed in collaboration with _v2_labs, Rotterdam and an environmental computational work, entitled ap0201 installed deep within the Mojave desert which received first prize within the Art & Artificial Life competition VIDA 8.0, 2005. In 2005 ap were responsible for the crash seminar and performances in London (ICA and Shoreditch Town Hall). In 2006 Martin Howse co-founded xxxxx, organising one large-scale conference and concert series in London (xxxxx) and publishing the acclaimed xxxxx [reader].

From 2007 to 2009 he has hosted a regular workshop, micro-residency and salon series in Berlin, most recently under the banner of _-micro-research. More recently micro-research has been established as a mobile platform for psychogeophysical research with ongoing projects in London, Peenemuende, and Berlin. For the last ten years he has collaborated on numerous open-laboratory style projects and performed, published, lectured and exhibited worldwide.