by Shophouse & Co
by Shophouse & Co
Placemaking Project (2021)
Sound Artist, Workshop Facilitator, Audio Engineer
PODSCAPE – Sounds & Stories of The City is a creative placemaking engagement tool, a community collaboration platform, and a public space catalyst. Comprising of a travelling mobile recording booth and a podcast, it aims to foster a sense of community through the shared experience of recording and preserving the memories and stories of the neighbourhood.
The second season of PODSCAPE explored the sanctuary town of Pasir Ris. I collaborated with Shophouse & Co as a sound artist to create three soundscapes inspired by Pasir Ris, as well as lead soundscaping workshops for the community. I also audio engineered and edited the second season of the PODSCAPE podcast.
Sounds of a Sanctuary
This musical soundscape doubles as the theme jingle for this season of the PODSCAPE podcast. Through a combination of gentle, acoustic melodies and fun, upbeat rhythms, it aims to capture both the tranquility and playfulness of Pasir Ris. Incorporated throughout the soundscape are sound recordings from Pasir Ris, reflecting different aspects of the neighbourhood. Listen carefully and see if you can pick out these sounds: a fishing line being cast, the clicking of camera shutters, and the crunch of a dried coconut husk.
This soundscape is an immersive aural experience. Close your eyes and situate yourself in the space that you’re hearing. Let your imagination fill in the gaps. What is around you? As you walk towards the shore, listen to the waves getting closer, the changing sound of the surface beneath your feet — from grass to sand to water. As the water laps and flits around you, you take a deep breath and… Splash.
The mangrove forest is arguably the oldest resident of Pasir Ris and a precious part of Singapore's natural landscape. Yet, despite its protected status, residents from Pasir Ris’ kampung days still reminisce the times when the mangrove forest was far more expansive, and lament what has been lost in the name of development.
If the mangrove forest and its inhabitants could talk, what would they say? Would they be grieved by the six-hectares we’ve reduced them down to, or content with their present state of preservation? Using sounds recorded in the forest, this soundscape imagines the reverberations of nature in response to the double-edged sword of human intervention.
In this soundscaping workshop, held in the middle of Pasir Ris Park, participants were introduced to the basics of sound-making, soundscaping, and audio recording. Using items that they found around the park, the participants worked together to create a collective soundscape, depicting their own impressions of Pasir Ris.
What sounds & stories can we uncover in different parts of the city?
The PODSCAPE podcast explores that question through conversations with the local community, collaborations with creatives, and discussions with urban and cultural practitioners. Each season of the podcast spotlights a particular neighbourhood or part of the city and unravels soundscapes, music, and memories that are unique to the place.