An Encounter with the Soundscape of the Future

Partner Programme

23 — 24 Sept 2023

Multi-Disciplinary Design

Borough Yards

Unit 216, Borough Tards, 22 Dirty Ln, London



The immersive audiovisual project - Hypernature - focuses on exploring the impact of climate change and man-made noise on the propagation of soundscapes through nature.

How could we speculate about the sound of the future?    Hypernature reveals the fragility of our sound ecology through an immersive audio-visual experience. It simulates the evolution of a natural soundscape through the effects of global warming.   The project is based on speculative data that shows the evolution of a forest under human-made climate change. Changes in localised meteorological conditions and associated foliage densities directly affect bird song, leading to an adaptation of new communication typologies. The project represents emergent soundscapes with twelve synthetic birds in a spherical coordinate system, moving around a listener. Simulated bird song changes through adaptive frequency modulation synthesis, the output is an audible evolution in site specific communication. The interaction with the virtual landscape and the subsequent change in sound are a metaphor for human intervention in the landscape and on avian communication. The user experiences the future soundscape in a direct and immersive manner.   Hypernature demonstrates the impact of environmental change on a soundscape. The design project simulates a change and effect that is normally intangible due to the vast timescales of natural evolution. This project is led by Ziyue Wang and Alicia Leonie Waibel, recent graduates of the Bartlett School of Architecture at UCL, works at the multidesplinary intersection of creativity and science.