Seeing Sound – 24 May to 21 July 2021

Seeing Sound brings together a partnership between The British Library, the Free Space Project (London) and The Brain Charity (Liverpool) to explore language through natural sounds taken from The British Library’s extensive sound archive. The project was designed for people living with aphasia, an impairment in language following an injury to the brain, most commonly from a stroke in the left hemisphere.

Stroke survivors improved their ability to communicate and use their non-dominant hands thanks to creating artwork while listening to sounds from the British Library’s archive. Over five sessions between November 2020 and February 2021, the 17 participants created dozens of artworks in response to sounds.

The clips, released as part of the British Library’s Unlocking Our Sound Heritage project, included the songs of chaffinches and tawny owls, streams running through woodland, the babble of seaside piers and even the mating call of a male haddock.

The incredible collection of artworks will be exhibited at Kentish Town Health Centre until July, before being displayed in Liverpool this October as part of the Fabric District Arts Festival.

The interactive exhibition will see viewers able to scan QR codes next to the multi-media works to play the Sound Archive clips on their own devices as they view the works. 

View the exhibition online