What is so compelling about the voice of a stranger? In lifts, trains, cafés, and on the street, I strain to hear details of the lives of others. This casual intrusion that may not necessarily be an intrusion (I couldn’t help but overhear…) figures the voice as borrowed, and easily, often unknowingly, leant.
Stolen Voices is a project that uses techniques such as amateur espionage and eavesdropping to physically mine specific geographical locations for ‘sonorous data’ in real time.
Stolen voices can be used for profit, power, and pleasure, we consider their overlooked potential for the creation of performance and for the construction of a research enquiry focused on the act of listening where sound is considered as both a spatial practice, and as something that is necessarily collective.
This focus on space and collectivity also casts critical attention on the more troubling aspects of surveillance culture and privacy violations.