The use of acoustemology as an important tool has been critical in this research. As a result of the sound recording process in Pardis, developing a relationship with the location became possible. Through listening, a physical encounter with the empty concrete tower blocks, with their wandering dogs around the construction sites, was made. In Pardis Phase 11, I consider my recordings to be an artistic intervention aimed at creating an archive of the history of listening. The recordings are representation of my interaction with the locations and their particularities such as the materiality, the physical aspect that surrounded me, the size, and the dimensions of the landscape features. Furthermore, the recordings are essentially my way of interacting with places as an artist and urban researcher, of exploring the sonic reality of those places. The recordings featured in this exposition were made during a fifteen-day visit to Pardis Phase 11, and I chose eight of them to represent the experience and feeling of that location, those that remind me of being there and listening to the reality of people’s everyday sonic experiences. To convey reality and a sense of place, none of these recordings have been edited, nor have any special audio effects been added. As a result, the recordings are taken directly from a reality that was part of my own listening experience. This allows for the possibility of transmitting something about the location that feels coherent, which is typical of Pardis Phase 11.
Listening to the recordings, one may notice that the dominant sound in nearly all of them is the sound of cars. Going inside and outside of the mini city, as well as moving around for shopping or other daily needs, all necessitate the use of a vehicle of some kind. The echoes of engine sounds travel far into the distance, and when they vanish, one is left alone in between brutal concrete tower blocks. The location’s typology and climate dictate a strong windy condition, which can be heard in few of the recordings. The sound of human interaction is rarely heard due to a lack of greenery and parks, as well as other public spaces such as libraries, recreation centres, and playgrounds, which contribute to a low level of human interaction. Going for a walk, spending leisure time, dining out, and other activities that one would expect from a neighbourhood do not exist. Pardis Phase 11 is an isolated suburban housing development cut off from the rest of Tehran, enclosing life and privatising nature. As a result, the location has ghostly characteristics, which I intended to convey through the recordings. The sonic reality of this place is made up of heavy machinery interacting with the earth, constant movement around the construction materials, and going in and out of Pardis Phase 11.