Brandon LaBelle / private call-public address / 07:03 / 2002

Brandon LaBelle is a sound artist and writer from Los Angeles. Working in the field of sound - performance - and installation - art since 1993, LaBelle's work aims to draw attention to sound as a spatial and social dynamic. Through a performative interaction with objects, found-sound, and electronics, the work functions as an intersection of architecture and aurality. LaBelle's interest in site-specificity reflects a desire to consider the relationships and tensions between art and a broader social environment. Speaking occurs against the background of social space and, as an articulation of private desire, is made public through utterance - the voice calls out and through this is always overheard. In calling another’s name one conjures the identity of that person, making tangible the mental image - concretizing through vocalization the imaginary. Through this action meaning is invested in the very act of speaking, the physical and audible gesture of utterance, as if in naming out loud the significance of the one named is given shape. Yet, there is a threshold upon which this gesture loses its ability to articulate the weight of this meaning, for in speaking, the "complete" meaning never gets fully revealed, or conveyed - the mental image and all its meaning remains hidden, within the folds of the mouth, the confines of speech and the interior. "Private Call-Public Address" is a series of recordings of myself saying the names of people - friends, relatives, strangers - that have had an ‘impact’ on me. This becomes a process of trying to recollect and recall, as well as name those who I want to make present, to identify them as ‘meaningful’ on a deeply personal level. Naming is a complicated process, because it strives to give voice and in doing so, conjure the one named. This speaking though also says something about how a sense of self is determined and influenced, if not constituted, by others. This relationship between an interior (naming, speech, etc.) and an exterior (others) functions as a complicated exchange in which the property of the self fluctuates in the exchange of intimacy and conversation.