Sound Art

“Are you an artist?” is a question that DJ Afifa Aza is often asked. She will tell you music is her art and that her variant of sound art often form collages of music that spans the globe. While music anchors her texts she deconstructs sound to trigger thought, feeling and action. She conceptually layers visual imagery and historical references to encourage art enthusiasts to reflect on the historical context of each layer and how that can be re-interpreted to provide new meaning.”



“Footage is the raw, unedited material as it had been originally filmed by movie camera or recorded by a video camera.”

Foot/age is a journey, an experience, in my mind ,through my eyes, the influences of different faces, different cultures…….. the colour of the sky.

Foot/age is inspired by a search and told through music.”


The Canopy Guild Sound station

The ubiquity of nature also reveals the ubiquity of sound. Sound is communication like nature is communication. From the Canopy Guild Sound station we explore the sound of nature. Our nature as human beings. Our nature toward nature. The reflection on nature and the manipulation of nature through technology is also the inspiration for the exploration of ideas that are hidden from us in the “bushes” as well as ideas and experiences we keep secret. There is a lot to be silent about in Jamaica and the silence is a metaphor for the thick foliage that forms the Canopy. The Sound station located within the Canopy opens to reveal this silence. The Sound station transmits the discordance and the harmony of nature. The Canopy Sound station memicks a radio broadcast. The Canopy Guild sound station triggers memory and offers us an opportunity to think about and talk about the politics of nature that we ignore or forget.



This is taken from notes i wrote in 201o after a session in 2010. This i think was the beginning of me formulating ideas around Sound as Art and the DJ as an artist.

  • The dj is a product of society. She is defined by and plays a role which is given, set and standard.
  • The dj is an entertainer
  • The dj is rarely an interpreter of music, songs and sounds
  • Club spaces and parties are where djs are to be found
  • The concept of a dj is firmly connected to playing music for other people. The dj is sharing her music with an audience and seeks to impress them.
  • Djing is always done in context; considering what the listener has heard before, is used to hearing or wants to hear. Psychologically this can limit the freedom to play
  • The energy of an audience affects the type of play
  • An artist is different from a technician
  • A dj technican is skilled on the techniques of djing (mixing, beatmatching, scratching)

the dj as an artist

  • the dj is an artist when she attempts to go beyond skill and uses the energy and feeling of the songs
  • the dj becomes an artist by connecting songs.
  • the dj becomes an artist by experimenting with new sounds and familar sounds
  • the dj as an artist is an interpreter of music/songs/sound.

Why does it matter

  1. If we see the dj as an artist we expect more than entertainment from an experience we expect inspiration.
  2. If people want more, those making music will be forced to make music differently to give more. This will change  the music we consume how and when.
  3. art is life. and understanding and examining art keeps people connected and in touch with life.
  4. Jamaica is a musical mecca. why not push the boundaries of our creativity outside of music as well and become a mecca of creativity. we can only do this if we examine all forms of creative expression.



  • Binary Solved- NLS Kingston
  • Canopy Guild- NLS Kingston
  • Footage- SOUL HQ
  • What’s going on- Di Institute for Social Leadership
  • What silences does art speak -National Gallery Jamaica


  • Footage
  • Viva la Vinyl
  • Dubconscious
  • Music 4 Reel
  • Sound culture University
  • Electromagneticradiation on ZANJ
  • Feeling Addi-The artistic and erotic power of Vbyz Kartel
  • Space is the Place
  • Retrospective Series

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