Accompanying her installation Phantom Words – Spatial Edition, Diana Deutsch will provide insights into the curious phenomenon of phantom words in a lecture and conversation with sound artist and author Marc Matter.
Diana Deutsch is a trained psychologist who devotes her artistic work to sonic perception phenomena, including so-called “phantom words.” In the cloakroom lobby of HKW, she invites visitors to fall for acoustic illusions. Her Phantom Words consist of no more than two intonations of a single word or the different syllables of a single phrase played back time-delayed in stereo over two loudspeakers. Before these reach the audience’s ears, superimpositions of the sounds take place in the room. The more time that passes, the more new words or even whole phrases seem to emerge from the back-and-forth of syllables. What exactly is heard varies from person to person and can sometimes reveals things about one’s own self: Sometimes, scraps from other languages are mixed in for non-native speakers, other times, phrases seem to correlate with the respective person’s state of mind.