BJ Engelbrecht

I am an artist and academic whose main creative and theoretical interest is in sound and its relationship to time and space, particularly within the complex urban environment of Johannesburg.

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Homesick

I have thought of many ways in which I can best describe the feeling of staying at home. On many occasions, I simply rejected the idea of reflecting on self-isolation but it was inevitable. It has certainly been such a stark and sudden change to social life and I couldn’t help but notice how people are negotiating with their predictions of how the future might look. I suppose, in the process of thinking this through, I was struck with nostalgia. Homesick (2020) is a field recording that I made less than a year ago during a performance of The Brother Moves On at Kitcheners in Braamfontein. Recording crowds of people has always been a fascination of mine, sitting in a busy cafe, a pub, recording crowds of students at a bus stop. Voices blur over each other and create a rich indescribable texture of gibberish yet, somewhat instinctively, we are listening in an attempt to find words, find sentences, follow conversations, be a part of each other and now we’re apart from each other.

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