20240703-BCN_Web_NotiWeb_TIMES (3).gif
03/07/2024Sónar, Unsound, Semibreve, and Berlin Atonal announce the first artistic creation of the TIMES collaborative project, ‘The Crossing’, featuring unique works by Chris Watson & Izabela Dłużyk and Saint Abdullah, Eomac & Rebecca Salvadori

Sónar is proud to join Unsound, Semibreve, and Berlin Atonal today to announce the first artistic creation from the TIMES collaborative project.


The Crossing’ is an ambitious multi-dimensional and multi-disciplinary work, involving artists, musicians, and researchers from across Europe, and commissioned by Unsound, Semibreve, Berlin Atonal, and Sónar. It’s composed of two separate performances - Białowieża by Chris Watson & Izabela Dłużyk, and A Forbidden Distance by Saint Abdullah, Eomac & Rebecca Salvadori, which will both be presented at all of the involved festivals throughout 2024 and 2025. 


The thematic golden thread of the project focuses on the nature of borders and the complex emotional psychodynamics experienced by migrants. The sites representing Europe’s current political landscape are not always the obvious ones; cities, parliaments, universities, and workplaces. Politics can also be read against the grain by examining those locations often incorrectly perceived as apolitical, lying outside human history and in the margins rather than at the centre of our collective political lives.


One such site identified by the commissioning festivals is Białowieża Forest, which stretches across Poland and Belarus. It is the last mainland part of the primaeval forest that once stretched across Europe and is still largely untouched by humans. 

For more than two years, migrants from the Middle East, Africa and South Asia have attempted to cross through this forest into Poland and the EU – and have been pushed back by Polish guards. This has resulted in migrants being trapped and dying. A metal wall has been constructed, dividing the forest, which has become a symbol of wider geopolitical tensions. 


This site provides the geographical grounding for the first chapter of this project, called Białowieża. This new performance is a work by the legendary field recordist Chris Watson, who is working with Izabela Dłużyk, a blind Polish sound recordist celebrated for her profound connection to nature’s acoustics and recognized as one of the BBC's 100 Most Influential Women in 2023 for her expertise in bird sound recording. Their new performance will be performed in total darkness in multichannel audio.


The second chapter to the work is jointly produced by Iranian-Canadian brothers Mohammad and Mehdi (Saint Abdullah), Irish sound-designer and musician Ian McDonnell (Eomac), and London-based Italo-Australian video artist and filmmaker Rebecca Salvadori.  The project, entitled A Forbidden Distance, is an exploration of the sense of self in relation to processes of displacement.  Their collaborative audio-visual work reflects on the nature of stories and fragmented experiences, both collectively and individually.


Both pieces will be presented as part of the commissioning festivals’ 2024 and 2025 editions, see below for dates. 

'The Less Deceived' at Openless by Berlin Atonal:  Friday 23rd August 2024, Kraftwerk, Berlin, Germany

Unsound 2024 - NOISE: 29th September - 6th October 2024, Kraków, Poland

Semibreve 2024: 24th - 26th October 2024, Braga, Portugal

Sónar 2025: 12th June - 14th June 2025, Barcelona, Spain



TIMES (The Independent Movement for Electronic Scenes) is a cooperative project that brings together 10 European festivals and an audiovisual partner to create original performances that combine music and visual arts. As well as shared programming of artists and the project's original creations, TIMES aims to support, promote, and improve diversity and sustainability within the music sector. 


TIMES is a collaboration between: Berlin Atonal (DE)Elevate (AT), Insomnia (NO), Le Guess Who? (NL), Nuits sonores (FR), Reworks (GR), Semibreve (PT), Sónar (ES), Terraforma (IT), Unsound (PL) and our audiovisual partner Creative Broadcast (RO).The project is a successor to the We are Europe cooperation (2015-2022) and is co-funded by the European Union.