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I was using six watts when you received me.png

SCAPE 7 - I was using six watts when you received me

by Maddie Leach & Jem Noble

A SCAPE 7 work presented in partnership with Sound Archives | Ngā Taonga Kōrero 

From the wide open fields of Hagley Park, at scheduled but irregular times, radio operators from the Christchurch Amateur Radio Club attempted to contact the International Space Station as it orbited above the city. I was using six watts when you Received me has the radio call sign, ZL3ISS, and transmits on 107.1 FM for local 'ground-based' audiences. Working with material held by the National Sound Archive Ngā Taonga Kōrero here in Christchurch, the project included pre-quake recordings made in buildings and spaces now lost or transformed. ISS contact sessions and local broadcasts were overlaid to produce intriguing new sonic artefacts.

Image & video credits:

I was using six watts when you received me, Maddie Leach & Jem Noble, 2013

© SCAPE Public Art & Maddie Leach & Jem Noble


Maddie Leach

Maddie Leach’s practice is largely project based, investigating viable ways of making artworks in order to interpret and respond to specific place-determined content. Leach has consistently varied the way she resolves her work: having fabricated objects or had them fabricated for her, used text and print media, video, performative actions and processes of exchange. She establishes idiosyncratic compositions of seemingly disparate elements to suggest the dynamic and diffuse nature of place, often imparting a transient, almost fugitive, status to the artwork. Leach is interested in the space between what is expected and what happens, between potential and actual forms.

Maddie Leach has received a number of significant local and international project commissions, including contributing works to If you were to live here…, the 5th Auckland Triennial, 2013; Iteration: Again, Tasmania, 2011; for the National Sculpture Factory and Cork City Council, Ireland, 2011; Close Encounters, Chicago, 2010; and One Day Sculpture, New Zealand, 2008. Her work has been included in the group exhibitions Peripheral Relations: Marcel Duchamp and New Zealand Art, Adam Art Gallery, Wellington, 2012; The Obstinate Object, City Gallery Wellington, 2012; Reason & Rhyme, Gertrude Contemporary, Melbourne, 2011; It happened that, St Paul Street Gallery, Auckland, 2010, and Primary Products, Adam Art Gallery, 2007. Leach has been awarded residencies with International Art Space in Perth for Spaced 2: Future Recall 2014–15 and with Spike Island, Bristol, UK, in 2014. She was Taranaki Artist in Residence at the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, New Plymouth, 2012 and International Artist in Residence at the National Sculpture Factory, Cork City, Ireland, 2008. She is a Senior Lecturer in Fine Arts at Massey University in Wellington and has an MFA in sculpture from the University of Canterbury. 

Jem Noble

Jem Noble’s practice encompasses digital image-making, music, sculpture, performance and text, and is concerned with questions of framing, indeterminacy and co-production. Drawing on aesthetic approaches to processes, systems and gestures in art, Noble’s work addresses the emergent nature of form and its implications across physical, experiential and political domains. Sound and image media feature frequently in this work, which is often concerned with their materiality — how its determinacy is both produced and challenged by the practices of which they are a part and how this can serve to question distinctions of human and non-human agency.

Jem Noble holds a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Philosophy from Swansea University in Wales. He has produced solo projects in Canada, New Zealand and Britain, collaborated with a wide range of artists, film-makers and cultural producers. Recent projects include a performance-lecture for the European Arts Research Network at dOCUMENTA (13), 2012; image, text and audio work in conjunction with Bruce Nauman’s Days at the ICA, London, 2012; re-edits of 1988 feature films Ghosts of the Civil Dead and They Live, screened at Arnolfini, Bristol, 2011; a lending-library of self-improvement materials on commercially obsolete media found in Hobart second-hand shops for permanent installation in the Tasmanian School of Art library as part of Iteration: Again, 2011; facilitating 100-piece vocal-noise choirs with improvisational vocalist Phil Minton by disseminating bespoke video training manuals through community networks in Bristol and Glasgow, 2009; and painstakingly recording music from the internet in real time over three months to DJ at Manifesta 7 in Trentino in collaboration with Swedish anti-copyright activists Piratbyrån, 2008. He has also undertaken several commissioned collaborations with Turner Prize 2012 winner Elizabeth Price, producing sound and music for her large-scale video installations. Noble is founding member of the Blackout Arts expanded-cinema collective (2002-2010) and was co-director of Venn Festival of new and exploratory music and sound between 2004 and 2008.