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Noise is comforting

Cindy Tonkin - April 24, 2022

At the last Sydney BAG meeting conversation turned to people who had to have noise in their world in order to feel safe.

I walked home and knocked up this book (which was originally around how weird this habit was, and then became clearer that it’s about how people comfort themselves). It was Anzac Day Long Weekend, so i had time and focus.

The construction is a kind of flag book made from envelopes, covered. Inside each envelope is a card with a tissue paper overlay, and words.

I have been hanging onto these orange envelopes forever, and I used some old american patchwork quilt wrapping paper which has also been in my cupboard for more than 20 years (always waiting faithfully for finding the right time). The blank red cards came from Rina’s stuff, now maybe 5 years old. So all of it is “upcycled” I guess. I attached some recently acquired tissue paper to the red cards, wrote on the cards and then on the tissue with a sharpie, just to work through the idea. I suspect I could do an entire project on noise as comfort / silence as scary, probably inspired by extraverts everywhere who need external stimulus to think well. Being an extrovert I’m no stranger to the concept.

What I like with the tissue is how the sharpie leaked into the underneath part – the traces of the words are something i want to do more with.

The video was recorded in my back yard in between rain showers. the birds have been going crazy in the date palms next door, which is the squealing and squeaking you hear. Quite appropriate for a book about sounds!

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