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Page last updated at 15:36 GMT, Tuesday, 27 July 2010 16:36 UK
Tadpoles feature in sound installation in Ashford
Lee Patterson at work
Lee has an interest in 'overlooked' or hidden sounds

Sounds usually inaudible to the human ear can now be heard in Ashford.

The recordings were made by sound artist Lee Patterson who is currently in residence at Stour Valley Arts.

Lee used hydrophones, which he made himself, to record the hidden sounds of the landscape and its wildlife, in and around south Ashford.

Since November 2009, Lee has been exploring and collecting material in King's Wood and the Ashford flood plain.

Lee works with Stour Valley Arts and the Forestry Commission to identify areas of sonic and ecological interest in the Ashford area.

Through the use of contact microphones and hydrophones, Lee accesses the sounds of microscopic worlds of solid materials and underwater environments such as ponds, rivers, drainage ditches and moats.

The installation in Ashford is titled Elemental Fields and it includes the sound of wind through wire fences, cars travelling over a bridge, tadpoles feeding in a pond and pondweed releasing bubbles of oxygen.

Lee says the recordings took quite a bit of patience. "You have to try things quite a few times and spend a lot of time out in the landscape waiting for things to happen."

"There's no digital manipulation of the sound other than the actual recording and small edits so they're pretty much as you would hear if you could put your ears under the water."

Pondweed
Pondweed was recorded with an underwater microphone

Alongside Lee Patterson's residency, Stour Valley Arts is working with two local schools to create a sound map of their surroundings. Their work is entitled Vibration Station and is part of the Elemental Fields installation.

Lee Patterson's residency will culminate in 2011 with the launch of a physical work situated in King's Wood.

Elemental Fields is at Tufton House in Ashford until Saturday 31 July 2010.





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