Call to Listen

Copyright: Margaux Weiß

Katharina Kellermann (Pelosi), Call to Listen, 2017, Hamburg

Katharina Kellermann (Pelosi), Call to Listen –  ein Post_kolonialer Resonanzraum, 2017, Hamburg


The project Call to Listen – a Post_Colonial Resonance Space deals with the Hamburg Landungsbrücken area. The site, which is of historical importance in Hamburg’s colonial history, has now become a central tourist destination. Call to Listen is a multi-part invitation to deal with the politics of sounding, listening and being heard in post_colonial Hamburg. In public space and in an installation set-up, the project examines how acts of listening can become the starting point for performative forms of remembering in the urban present. The starting point for a collection of acoustic materials was research about the sounds that resonate in this place: port sounds, the music of the Elbphilharmonie Concert Hall and the musical The Lion King, public transport, political demonstrations. This mixture of historical and contemporary material, field recordings, archive material, and samples served as a material pool for a series of listening sessions. In these listening sessions, the sound material was commented on by various experts in the form of interviews and expanded with additional footage. From the collection of sounds as well as sections of the interviews, a 30-minute soundtrack was created that can be heard on site at the Landungsbrücken. The collection thus becomes performative through a multiple invitation to listen: the participating researchers share their perspective on the acoustic material through their own listening, which in turn can be listened to collectively at the Landungsbrücken. This way, the site is activated as a temporary resonance space through listening. Call to Listen asks what places sound like, whether their history is audible and how sound can change the perception of places and their historical meaning. Call to Listen tries to provide acoustic access to the post_colonial present of Hamburg and thus to contribute to the debate about formulating a corresponding culture of remembrance: resonating sounds and voices and initiating memory spaces by listening. Call to Listen invites you to a response, to experiment with the political potential of sound and forms of listening, looking for ways to develop a different practice of remembering and a new imagination of the city.


Researchers: Katharina Kellermann (Pelosi)

Co-researchers: Millicent Adjei, Jim Anton, Ulrike Bergermann, Tania Mancheno, Dan Thy Nguyen, Sibylle Peters, Andreas Schneider, Louise Vind Nielsen

Participants: Lani Tran Duc, Ulf Treger, Rosa Wernecke

Formats: Performative Collection