Through Antiquity Springs Modernism

The Multifunctional Influence of Sound Produced by Lawrence Abu Hamdan’s Forensic Listening

  • Theo Foley MSc Sound Design, The University of Edinburgh
Keywords: forensic listening, sound design


As modernity develops it distances itself from the past. This rings true for working methods, which in turn must develop as times change. This paper discusses how the spheres of Science, Engineering, Design and Art are interlinked, and to use multifaceted approaches in any one of these topics may benefit them all This paper examines the interdisciplinary approach of designer and professor Neri Oxman and applies it to the new practice of Forensic Listening developed by Sound Artist and “Private Ear” Lawrence Abu Hamdan. Abu Hamdan’s work demonstrates a clear amalgamation of these topics which ultimately results in an impactful and meaningful artistic product that is used to raise awareness about the social and legal injustices on which his work centres. The accessibility of Abu Hamdan’s art is a huge asset to his work that allows the viewer to not only absorb it but to interact with it. This blend of artistic presentation and practical use is an example of how the interdisciplinary approaches of modernity can in turn create diverse and dynamic products.