Stijn Demeulenaere


Stijn Demeulenaere is a sound artist, searching musician and field recordist. He studied sociology and cultural studies and studied radio at the RITCS, Royal Institute for Theater, Film and Sound. Stijn was curator and producer of the free-form radio program ‘Radio Eliot’ on Radio Scorpio. He worked as a journalist for the Belgian national radio stations Klara and Radio 1 and for the independent radio station Radio K Centrale in Bologna, Italy. He was a founding member of the Karen Eliot improvisation collective.

Since 2009 he has been making installations, soundscapes, performances and films. Stijn is attracted to sound because of its directness, malleability and mystery. In sound he tries to understand places and unravel social structures, personal history and people’s unconscious imagination.

Stijn works on the themes of phenomenology of listening and the personal experience of sound. Stijn investigates how people give meaning to sound, and the relationships between identity, sound and listening. Stijn tries to understand places by listening to them. His work has been shown at the Flanders Festival Kortrijk (BE), Concertgebouw Brugge (BE), Kaaitheater (BE), Netherlands Institute for Media Art (NL), Den Frie contemporary art center (DK), Iklectic (UK), Ancienne Belgique (BE), iMAL (BE), Le Mans Sonore (FR), International Film Festival Rotterdam (NL), Rencontres Internationales Paris/Berlin (FR/DE), Musica, (BE), Festival International du Film sur l’Art (Montréal, CA), NAISA (CA), November Music (NL), STUK (BE), Q-O2 (BE), Bâtard Festival (BE), São Paulo Bienal (BR), Radio Futura Festival (PT), Working Title Festival (BE), Helicotrema Festival (IT), FIBER Festival (NL), Museo Reina Sofia (ES), and the Museum of Fine Arts Ghent (BE).

In addition to his own work, Stijn also makes sound design for other makers. He created soundtracks for choreographers such as Stav Yeini and Veli Lehtovaara; and for theater makers Mesut Arslan, Pieter De Buysser and Kevin Trappeniers. Together with Georgia Vardarou and Marisa Cabal he created the site specific performance Sonic Theaters. Stijn also works with directors and video artists such as Jan Locus and Visual Kitchen. He has recently also started collaborating with various musicians.

Stijn was artist in residence at Overtoon (Brussels, BE), Cimatics (Brussels, BE) and Imagine2020 (UK), among others. He is currently an artist in residence at the Kunstenwerkplaats VZW in Brussels (BE). His work won awards at the 2019 Engine Room International Sound Art competition (UK), the 2014 soundscape composition prize from Musica (BE), the 2021 Sound of the Year Awards, and won the Grand Prix at the 2020 Split Videoart Festival. He was nominated for the 2016 Discovery Award from LOOP Barcelona (ES), and the 2016 European Sound Art Award (DE), among others. In 2017 he released his first album Latitudes – September 2016 on the Silken Tofu Label.

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Stijn Demeulenaere

Listen to his album here

In residentie Everybody lives here

An exploration of each other’s listening

Stand still for a moment. Sit down, maybe. Look around you, listen, observe. Maybe it is loud around you, maybe quiet, maybe those concepts are wrong. What do you hear? Sounds come from everywhere, from all directions. Below the threshold of your consciousness, a place, a place, presents itself to you. This happens as much through the sound you hear as through the light you see. It is up to you to give meaning to those sounds, to make connections between them. You start to concentrate on one sound, and you notice that there is another sound next to it, a perhaps more interesting, more intriguing sound. A sound that almost fell below the threshold of your attention. And so you listen on, jumping from sound to sound until you have created a whole world for yourself.

Stijn Demeulenaere and the duo The Third Guy present a project in which field recordings and musical instruments interact with the natural sonic environment of a place. Through real time interaction, the performers create layers of sounds that all interact with each other, creating a multi-layered trialogue, bound between time linearity and space. With Everybody Lives Here we want to create a performance that explores the sound of spaces. We work with the sound of a place, adding our own sounds and using them to emphasize the aural identity of the spaces in which we play. Through an interaction between the three performers and the audience, we want to create a sound environment that explores the sonic essence of places, their acoustics, their soundscape and the listening of the audience and ourselves. The performance is ideally suited for in situ performances, but also works on a stage, in concert halls or other buildings.

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