Budhaditya ChattopadhyayWithering Field
Crónica 189~2022 CD
Release date: 6 September 2022
- Withering Field (35:00)
The current geologic era is ascribed to the Anthropocene defined by unprecedented manmade violence over earth’s ecologies and natural environments. In this era, the ecological balance and the traditional livelihood of indigenous habitats in the re-emerging economies of Global South are endangered due to a global pressure for rapid growth in technological infrastructure and industrial development, which is a modernist project. Facing an impending climate catastrophe, these tribal landscapes and indigenous habitats along with their naturalist settings are undergoing massive displacement and dispossession resulting in an estrangement and alienation of the tribal community from nature, on which their livelihood has been based. Withering Field creates a narrative auditory situation to facilitate a contemplative listening to such events of displacement and dispossession. The work is developed through extensive fieldwork and recordings made at specific sites now considered Special Economic Zones (SEZ), situated in South Asia. It aims to delineate transitions of indigenous habitats dislocated from their natural settings, forced to gearing fast towards a contemporary urbanisation. This process is rendered in the composition within a mode of criticality and questioning. The project not only intends to foster the capacity to reconnect with the tribal community, but also makes the displacement of natural landscapes and societies audible for wider public awareness. Methodology of the composition includes incorporating the sonic elements collected from the sites to create a post-immersive and augmented narrative facilitating a context-aware listening, which creates the space for in-depth reflections on the intricate processes of environmental decay and destruction of nature that deeply affect the indigenous communities, along with their endangered memories and eroding cultural practices.
- All sounds recorded, composed, mixed and produced by Budhaditya Chattopadhyay at ICST, Zurich University of the Arts, with the technical support of Johannes Schütt.
- Production year: 2015-2019.
- Cover photos by Pedro Tudela.
- Thanks to the indigenous people of Santhal Parganas, this work is dedicated to them.