aurélie lierman - iota mikro

 Image of child in headphones by Aurélie Lierman

Image of child in headphones by Aurélie Lierman

iota mikro was produced by radio producer, vocalist and composer Aurélie Lierman. The piece first aired in April 2012 at Studio I, Den Haag (NL). It won the Third Prize in the Short Form category at the Grand Prix Nova 2013, Bucharest (RO). iota mikro is dedicated to Lierman’s adorable two year old Rwandan Belgian godchild, Jerom Dom.


Aurélie says:

In Summer 2011, I travelled for four months throughout East Africa, following my ears instead of following roadmaps, freely walking around and hunting for sounds as if they were endangered butterfly species. It's then and it's there I got the idea to start an ongoing personal archive of field recordings, and I baptized my project "Africa on Tape".

Back in Europe from that epic trip back in my studio, I experimented with all the field recordings from my Africa on Tape archive, and my first opus became iota mikro in 2012. There is no real synopsis for iota mikro as it's leaning towards abstract sound art. Translation is also not needed as most of the Rwandan words are used as pure sound poetry and non-semantic abstract sound bits, distorted or manipulated in another way.

I'm Belgian by adoption, and Rwandan by birth. I was born in a tiny traditional canopy hut on the foggy and chilly slopes of volcano Karisimbi and the Virunga mountains of Rwanda, far away and in big contrast with the sterile white maternity hospitals as we know them in the West. Curious about a specific sonic environment in which I spent the first period of my life, I back to the spot where I was born in 2011. Good to know, back in 2003, I already had made Nyrabikali, a realistic radio documentary about my first trip back to my roots in Rwanda. So on my trip in summer 2011, I no longer felt a need to make a veracious reconstruction of my past.

This time I got way more interested in an artistic reflection on my complex identity and a meta reconstruction of my life experience. iota mikro is set up like a dream sequence balancing between haunting flashbacks, desired and imagined memories. All sounds in iota mikro are completely derived from my field recording sessions in Rwanda in 2011, crafted together through a very old school straightforward analog editing technique. It was my wish to fuse both my passions and professions, radio and composition into one composition. ‘iota mikro’ is Greek for small iota. Iota is the smallest letter in the Greek alphabet, and ‘mikro’ just means small but could also refer to a microphone. And since my real paper birth certificate in Rwanda is actually missing, I created, with iota mikro, my own sonic birth certificate.


Aurélie Nyirabikali Lierman was born in Rwanda but grew up in Belgium from the age of two. She’s an independent radio producervocalist and composer. Lately Lierman is trying new directions by fusing radio art, vocal art and composition. Her main focus is her personal field recordings: a large collection of unique sounds and soundscapes from rural and urban contemporary East‐Africa. Sound‐bit by sound‐bit she’s transforming and sculpting them into something she would call “Afrique Concrète”. Lierman’s work has been broadcasted, exhibited and performed throughout Europe, Israel, Morocco, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and USA.

In October 2018 Aurélie Nyirabikali Lierman won the CTM Radiolab in Berlin. In January 2016 Lierman was awarded the Sally and Don Lucas fellowship at Montalvo Arts in California. In May 2014 she won the First Prize at Monophonic 2014 (Brussels) for ‘Anosmia’, a radio composition reflecting on the Rwandan Genocide. In 2013 she won the 1st prize at Sonic Art (Rome) for her radio composition KARIAKOO ( a sonic portrait of a lively neighborhood in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania). In the same year, Lierman also won the 3rd prize at Grand Prix Nova (Bucharest) for her radio composition ‘iota mikro’ (based on field recordings from her birthplace, the Karisimbi vulcano, in Rwanda).

Lierman released two albums with the British cult-group Nurse With Wound, collaborated with visual artist Vincent Meessen (Belgian entry for Venice Biennale 2015) on his recent exhibition at Kunsthalle Basel and Bozar. And in summer 2015 she toured the USA premiering her solo sets for voice and tape.

Currently Lierman is preparing new electro acoustic work commissioned by Gaudeamus, for ensemble But What About to be premiered September 2018 and March 2019.

camilla hannan - it was right there in front of you


It was right there in front of you was produced by sound artist Camilla Hannan. All source material is from field recordings made by the artist over the last year or so. This piece airs for the first time on Constellations.


Camilla says:

In this work, I was thinking about foreground, mid field and background. I love the sound of scraping metal and the way these sounds can merge up against each other. I like the mix of the natural world with machines. I like the on/off of contact mics and sometimes I like inserting myself in an incidental way – breaking the fourth wall if you like.

In this piece, I was thinking about how things right in front of you can tell you stuff that for whatever reason you may be oblivious to.  You may be distracted by other things or… you can’t or you don’t pay attention. That’s what it’s all about, paying attention.

Inspiring Camilla in the world of audio

The magpie birdsong in my garden is inspiring me at the moment. It’s spring where I am and the magpies are nesting and their morning calls are really quite magical. They make me stop and listen.

And outside of it?

What inspires me are the many talented and creative people I know personally and publicly who continue to make amazing work, despite fashion and trends. They just continue to impress me with their solid dedication and practice. 


Camilla Hannan is an Australian audio producer who has created a broad range of work for radio, podcast, performance and installation over the last fifteen years. Her work has been broadcast, performed, installed and exhibited both in her home country and internationally. Most recently, her sound design work featured as part of Particle/Wave for the Melbourne International Arts Festival with a multichannel immersive work specially commissioned for the Planetarium Dome at Science Works, Melbourne Museum, Australia 

Her interests lie in examining how sound impacts upon our psyche and how field recordings can create a road map for understanding the world around us. Find her on Twitter here.

olivia bradley-skill - music to wash dishes By

Music to Wash Dishes By (This is of Course a Metaphor) was produced by Olivia Bradley-Skill, and made for a specialty CD for WFMU's 2018 fundraising drive. 


Olivia says: 

I made part of this piece two years ago, kind of as an experiment or a sketch. I recorded myself making sounds in the kitchen, so I made eggs - I turned on the stove, I cracked open the eggs, I fried em up. At the time I was also reading this piece by Zadie Smith, which had an audio component of her reading the piece, and I just needed sound materials and liked her voice and cadences, so I thought it would be interesting to cut her voice up and manipulate it and decontextualize it and see if I could relate it to the kitchen and the idea of cooking as a metaphor for something else, something beyond the piece. So, anyway, I made that piece and I didn't really think about it until a few months ago, I found it on my computer deep in files, and I thought it was an intriguing and interesting piece, but it sounded pretty stale and boring. So I added in a layer of the synth piece by Tom Cameron, which is actually called Music to Wash Dishes By, and then I wanted to add in some more voices that would add depth and complexity to Zadie Smith and cooking, so I remembered this Marvin Gaye clip, which I love, where he talks about music and love and pain and memory, and it's really beautiful and inspiring. And the way he says his words and how he says them - he talks about heat and wounds, and they evoke real energy. I do everything by ear and I try to play around with and fiddle with different audio sources which move me and stick with me, and then I find meaning through that and see if it takes me anywhere new. 

Inspiring Olivia in audio and beyond

I want to be spellbound (held hostage, fully immersed) by the art I consume, a desire that I try to remember when I am creating stuff, too. I love big abstract works of art that I can fall into, a la Jack Whitten, Josef Albers, Mary Heilmann, etc. The music I've been motivated by feels expansive and deep and has that same mesmerizing quality: I'm currently listening to a lot of Marisa Anderson and Carl Stone. I've been dabbling in pottery on the wheel and love watching ceramicists on Instagram. It's more about the process than the final result -- the sensation of clay moving through my hands, the slow and meticulous movements, the awareness of my body and its strength. I've also been reading Fred Moten's new book Black and Blur. Dense and imaginatively written, my brain soaks it up in small chunks, and I find that I have to take a lot of time to chew on his ideas.


Olivia Bradley-Skill is a radio/sound artist who works with voice, field recordings, sampled sounds, and found media. She has a weekly radio show, which layers together various sonic sources into dreamy, hazy matter, including but limited to songs, voice, feedback, and extraneous sounds/noise. In addition to her radio work, she also has an increasing body of performance work, where she manipulates these sounds and her voice live. She has produced radiophonic works for WFMU, Wave Farm WGXC, Resonance, WPRB, and more. She has performed live at various festivals, such as On Air Fest, Megapolis Audio Festival, Trans-X Transmission Arts Symposium, and Wave Farm’s 10th anniversary event. Her WMFU show Radio Ravioli can be found here