The radio artist and author Liesl Ujvary scaled her “electromagnetic living room as an acoustic sculpture” with the help of a device, which helps making electromagnetic waves audible. This device is called “Elektrosluch”, “sluch” is the Slovak word for hearing.
The “Elektrosluch” is produced by Jonáš Gruska in Bratislava, the city Ujvary was born in 1939.
Jonáš Gruska is not only the inventor and manufacturer of the “Elektrosluch”, but is himself also an artist and performer, he is working with field recordings, performances in the public space and sound installations.
For his piece “Vlakom” he recorded a train trip from Bratislava to Prague with his “Elektrosluch”.
I) Mein elektromagnetischer Wohnraum
by Liesl Ujvary
„My electromagnetic living room as an acoustic sculpture is based on recordings with a device called “Elektrosluch”, which is constructed and built by the Slovak musician Jonáš Gruska. The “Elektrosluch” records electric waves, which are transmitted from all devices, which are run by electricity. In my apartment this are TV-Set, CD-Player, amplifier, recorder player, loudspeakers, air con, 2 Notebooks, mixing console, Tablet, Keyboard, printer & scanner, landline, modem, central heating, electric kettle, washing machine, fridge, toaster, microwave, sound system with CD-player, radio & tape deck, loudspeakers, Bluetooth-stereo-loudspeakers, vacuum cleaner. Of course not all of these devices are in use at the same time, still the living room is full of a very tense, very bubbly structure of layers of electromagnetic waves, which the “Elektrosluch” makes audible in extreme variable and very exotic manner. The recordings have all been made in my apartment to give an impression of an aspect of the world which would be foreign and unknown to us without the “Elektrosluch”.” Liesl Ujvary, Wien, 09. 01. 2017
by Jonáš Gruska
Vlakom is a collection of raw electromagnetic field recordings from a train ride between Bratislava and Prague. In an electromagnetic field, a train becomes an electric creature – interwoven with streams of neuro-digital communication, it thirstily sucks its life-energy from the wires above. The electromagnetic dimension only embraces the notion of how alive these iron monsters actually are. It might change the way you see and hear trains forever.
Jonas Gruska about the Elektrosluch and Vlakom
The recordings are unprocessed and contain a lot of very high frequencies, which might be harmful at extended periods of loud listening.
Special thanks: Andrej Chudý and Jonny Fox