The Convergence and Amalgamation of the Visual and Sound

Satch Hoyt
The Convergence and Amalgamation of the Visual and Sound

Workshop, English, 2 SWS, 2 ECTS
Wednesdays, 12-16 h: 8.5., 15.5., 22.5., 29.5., 5.6., 12.6., 19.6.2024 in Hybrid Lab

Registration on Moodle starts 15.04.2024:
Moodle Enrollment Key / Einschreibeschlüssel: converge

My course will introduce the students to Black progressive thinkers and visual and sonic practitioners. People who are sculptor’s, of trans-national African diaspora culture, the copious amounts of amnesia which have doused our narratives will duly be exposed and discussed.
Who’s Canon? Re-writing the canon from a transnational African Diaspora perspective. We will survey classical African sculpture, to current Black abstraction.
Considering Terry Adkins, Ellen Gallagher, Shinique Smith, Alice Coltrane, Eric Dolphy, Sun Ra, Charles Mingus, Miles, Kendrick Lamar, Flying Lotus, Ben Patterson, and Lawrence D, "Butch" Morris. These practitioners will be discussed during the period of my course. Much attention will be given to the concept of real time composition. Improvisation within loose grids is the lifeblood of many African based creative practices. The dovetailing of sound and visual, visual and sound will be a topic at the forefront of all the sessions. Scholars such as Fred Moten, Stuart Hall, Paul Gilroy, Sadiya Hartman and Greg Tate, will be discussed. My Afro-Sonic Mapping methodology will be presented, time will be spent listening to the early 1910 phonograph wax cylinder recordings and current genres of progressive Drill and Hip Hop, aiding in the understanding of how the recorded past becomes the present. Music and aesthetics have continuously been the chroniclers of our histories. Arguing that the ships acted as portals carrying mnemonic networks of sound to the Caribbean basin and the Americas.

Offering a lens of sonic repair to the understanding of Black histories in our present nowness, music is permanently transforming our sense of society, personhood, and community. Cartographic sensibilities will be examined in regards to the circular evolution of sonics between the African continent and the diaspora:

- From Slave ship to Space ship, decoding Black Sonics.
- Cartographic Cosmological signs, the graphic score elements found in Mbuti bark cloth paintings.
- Aesthetic attractors, the blingified lure of conversion, Catholicism in the Kongo.
- Plantation Crescendos, the Africanization of Christianity, the church, being a chosen sanctuary to retain traditional belief systems, cosmologies the cradle of music genres such as the blues and Jazz.
- Early Congo court orchestras, the return of the Rumba from communist Cuba to its reinterpretation and reinvention by Zairean bands such as Franco’s OK Jazz orchestra circa 1960’s.
- Pre middle passage music amalgamations; European colonial conquests from 1483 to 1976.
- Un-listening enables one to hear the Un-played, Black Cacophonic barometers.

Participants will learn elements of Real Time composition, which will include the Lawrence D. "Butch" Morris theory of Conduction. The semester will culminate in a display of the sculptural objects and scores, Plus a sound performance.
Students who play music instruments are welcome, but those who don’t can invent their own instruments, i.e. Ben Pattersons paper work. We will also interrogate the sonics and politics of silence.

Recommended reading:
Chude-Sokei, Louis: The sound of Culture.
Jaji, Tsisi Ella: Africa in Stereo.
Ferriera da Silva, Denise: Unpayable Debt.
Butler, Octavia E.: Kindred.

Requirements for the ungraded Studium Generale credit points: regular and active participation in all seminar activities. The students will be required to create graphic scores and/or sculptural objects that function as sounding forms.

Satch Hoyt is a visual artist and a musician, his diverse and multifaceted body of work - whether sculpture, sound installation, painting, musical performance, or musical recording - is united in its investigation of the “Eternal Afro-Sonic Signifier” and its movement across and amid the cultures, peoples, places, and times of the African Diaspora. Those four evocative words (a term coined by Hoyt) refer to the “mnemonic network of sound” that was enslaved Africans’ “sole companion during the forced migration of the Middle Passage.” lt was, and is, a hard-won somatic tool kit for remembering where you come from and who you are - and maybe, where you’re going - against all the many odds. Of Jamaican-British descent, Hoyt was born in London and currently lives in Berlin. Having also spent time in New York, Paris, and Mombasa, - all points on the many-sided and ever-expanding star that is the African Diaspora.