Welcome to Sonic Allotments.
Allot yourself some time to slow down and enjoy listening.
I’m spending time with different people around the Tees Valley who connect with the landscape - through gardening, playing music, telling stories. Each time we meet, I make a new sound piece from the recordings I’ve made.
Have a listen!
The pieces tell intimate narratives of season, place, connection, and community. Maybe they will sound familiar, or perhaps these are the kind of stories not so often heard. Sound recordings allow us to notice things we wouldn’t normally pay attention to: the flow, textures and details of the interactions between people, other living beings, materials and environment.
New pieces will be added as the project continues to evolve, so come back to hear more.
Share your connection with nature: send us your photo, video, voice note or story about the outdoor place which has helped you through the ups and downs of the pandemic and beyond. With your contributions, the interactive map of the Tees Valley will gradually be filled with snapshots celebrating local life and nature. It might be a flower, the view of the sky from your window, the trees you walk past every day...
I am so grateful to everyone for letting me in to their outdoors places, for trusting me and my recording equipment, for generously sharing their thoughts and stories, and for offering company at a time when being in community with others has become more valuable than ever.”
Enjoy the sonic harvest and add your own special place to the map.
Sonic Allotments will be live as part of Sonic Arts Week in Middlesbrough in July.
About the Artist
Nell's artistic practice has developed out of her somewhat feral childhood and in response to the environmental crisis. She explores her relationship with the natural environment through interactions and interventions in the landscape. Her sound works suggest different states of being and ways of knowing, and the potential of these experiences to unsettle and challenge habits of interpretation and understanding. Her work often involves the participation of the listeners.
Nell’s piece, “Sonic Stories from East Suffolk” was installed/performed as part of the ResearchWorks series at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. She recently created “Movements in Soil”, a participative sound piece for the SPARC 'Land Music' symposium in London and performance installations at Cheeseburn Sculpture Park in Northumbria in 2020 and 2021.
Nell co-founded music theatre company, The Gogmagogs with theatre director, Lucy Bailey in 1995, commissioning 27 composers and touring internationally for over a decade. Nell has worked for many years with Brian Eno, arranging and recording strings on his albums, and as creative partner with choreographer, Hofesh Shechter (In Your Rooms, Political Mother, Survivor, Finale and East Wall). She composed/devised the music for the live band for poet, Kae Tempest’s Brand New Ancients and co-composed the music for Untouchable with Hofesh for the Royal Ballet and ROH Orchestra. She was a member of psychedelic indie band, The Lea Shores, supporting Paul Weller, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Kasabian and The Dandy Warhols.
Recent projects include Crave at the Barbican Pit Theatre, and m/y at Sadlers Wells with choreographer, Julie Cunningham.
Whilst in her role as Course Leader at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Nell developed curatorial project Unfinished with Jan Hendrickse through which they have run experimental events at the Rose Lipman Building, Barbican, The Charterhouse, Tate Exchange and Iklectik in London.
She is also co-Director of MAP/making, a collective artist/educational project with Sophie Clements, RCA.
Nell was awarded a Philip Leverhulme Prize to develop her research practice.