Exhibition | Sound Exchange


Exhibition details

Friday, 9th to Friday, 25th of April 2021
open to view at Inspace City Screen
1 Crichton Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9AB

Sound Exchange, Aural Textiles


Sound Exchange is a group exhibition of work emerging from the Distributed Capabilities research project.

The exhibition showcases artefacts created by a collective of eleven craft makers who collaboratively experimented with sounds as an alternative source of design inspiration.

Using a variety of digital/analogue methods each artefact represents an exchange of practices, ideas, and sensory experiences.

The members are all professional craft makers who work across Scotland in various art and design disciplines including textiles, ceramics and jewellery.


Beth Farmer | Cally Booker | Carol Sinclair | Dwynwen Hopcroft | Isabelle Moore | Jen Stewart | Laura Lightbody | Marie Melnyczuk | Netty Sopata | Olive Pearson | Orla Stevens

For this project, the craft makers worked in pairs and/or trios to create work collaboratively that crossed and merged these different making disciplines.

Together with design researcher Dr George Jaramillo (Heriot Watt University) and handweaver and scientist Dr Lynne J Hocking-Mennie (Lynne’s Loom), the collective explored the following questions:

  • How do craft practitioners from different disciplines translate sounds to objects?
  • What sounds do they choose to work with, and how is this influenced by their connection to and awareness of their personal environment?
  • What objects are they inspired to create in response to these sounds?
  • How is the story of the sound conveyed in the objects created?
  • How do digital processes that support working with sound sit alongside physical and tactile craft skills and processes?

Listen to the Aural Textiles sounds on soundcloud…


The collective came together through a series of in-person and digital workshops that ran over two years during 2019 and 2020. At and in-between these workshops, the members of the collective developed, shared and refined approaches to design that took inspiration from the “heard” rather than “seen” environment, working with forms of visualised sounds (such as spectrograms) and through direct interpretation of sounds (such as making marks in direct response to listening). They considered different approaches to collaborating across discipline and geography, and the training and infrastructure needed to support that. And they discussed their choices of sounds and their reasons for continuing to work with them, which included emotional connections to the sounds as well as visual and tactile design considerations.

The ideas of hybrid digital/analogue processes, co-creation across making disciplines and sound attunement form the foundations of our ongoing research and the work presented in this exhibition.

While viewing the objects presented, we ask you to stop and actively listen to the environment you are in; to tune into the transient sounds around you as you pass through days and years; and to think about whether there are any of these sounds you might want to capture in physical form.


Sound Exchange exhibition footage and curator’s talk
Sound Exchange at Inspace City Screen
Photos from the Sound Exchange exhibition on flickr.
video production by Nicky Stears
video production by Nicky Stears

This project was funded by a Royal Society of Edinburgh Network Grant to Dr George Jaramillo and Dr Lynne J Hocking-Mennie.

Exhibition production by:

Dr Evan Morgan, Research Software Engineer, and Jessica Armstrong, Research Projects Producer at Design Informatics and Inspace Curator.