White Noise
Made in White City

RCA at White City Place:
Traces From Week Two

Last week, Royal College of Art students explored media ecologies in a programme curated by Matt Lewis, lecturer by day and sound artist by night. At the end of the week, three clues remained.


1. Wall of rogue street signs. 

RCA White City Place Making the long tail Eugene street signs

“One of the most ambitious and effective information design projects ever executed in Britain” is our motorway and road signage. This elegant and rigorous system, created in the 60s by graphic designers Jock Kinneir and Margaret Calvert, replaced an illegible mess of competing styles. Eugene's Conceiving Signage workshop studied and subverted this design classic.

Try this: spray paint, paper and a copy of the Highway Code.

2. Pile of blue pigment.

RCA White City Place Making the long tail Laurene Ciocco

Laurene Ciocco's installation work, A Territory of Experiences, took the form of a table top of curious objects. Their connection? Each was inspired by a single, unseen postage stamp. She says, “By developing a system of different ways of looking, this project interrogates what objects mean, what are their stories and the limits of their representation.”

3. 1930s-style crystal amplifier.

RCA White City Place Making the long tail Ryan Jordan

A digital apocalypse has occurred and no devices survive. Fortunately, electronic noise artist Ryan Jordan is here to teach us how to create a crystal amplifier from simple circuits and iron pyrite. Don't expect this to amplify as normal, though. Instead, the rocks emit sporadic bursts of noise. Jordan uses such devices in his performances to induce a trance state in the audience, with the help of strobe lighting. 

Try this: attend a workshop, or tinker with homemade electronics

Other performances: Sarah Sajid played Being, a sound work. She says, “The work aims to create a universe controlled by me... There is no time or linearity. Only a situation, a cacophony of feeling, and in places a meditation.”

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