• Elvin Ou

Her Black Long Hair by Janet Cardiff

An audio walk in Central Park.

"Weird, confusing, unexpected, creepy, amazing, scary, beautiful, experiential, immersive, crazy", if you asked me to describe the experience of "Her Black Long Hair", these would be some of the adjectives I can think of.

It was drizzling, chilly and dark when Tim and I met up by the statute of the horse and started the journey. At the very first sound track, I was so confused because I could not distinguish between the reality and the sound, it was so weird and amazing that the sound actually are edited to come from different directions, or even dimension, the audio felt alive, and has height and depth.

Then we started the sound walk by walking down the stairs, it was really interesting the way the audio guided us to walk down the stairs with a certain pace following the step sound in the audio.

Slowly following the audio guiding us walking deeper into the Central Park, it told us to pause, to make a turn to proceed the space, but the most amazing part of this experience is the "immersive" aspect of it. It was just so crazy that when we were walking pass a bench, you hear a man making a phone call like he was there, or walking pass those rocks and hearing kids voice from up there playing that it felt so real.

I wouldn't say the sound walk was trying to imitate the reality or anything like that, it felt more like it was creating another reality, another dimension and world. I felt so connected and at the same time so disconnected. Unfortunately, part of the park was closed for construction or some sorts, so we had to take a detour to be able to complete the journey.

In conclusion, this experience was very intriguing to me because I was expecting boring museum sound walks and it turned out to be so fun. I am very looking forward to create a sound walk!