What are the sounds of a city?


When one thinks of cities the visual is the first thing to come to mind. Buildings and natural landmarks are their main features. Since Reykjavik is a young city, it has few landmark. Therefore it could be distinguished by something other than physical landmarks, rather an experience or an atmosphere. Sounds have a strong connection to our memories and the experience of sound is more personal than seeing a known building. The sound will bring you back to what you were doing and feeling at that moment rather than the dominant experience of seeing.

These sounds capture various situations in Reykjavik, wether it being a walk through the National Gallery, a bus ride or standing on a busy city street. The audio images allow you to create a new context and deepen the experience.

The idea was sparked when looking for inspiration for a project I made for the course Icelandic Culture is a distinct sound. I wondered where the inspiration came from and if one could create an atmosphere that would encourage inspiration through sound.

The ball started to roll and a kind of intro-spective audio image for Reykjavík was captured. What do we want our city to sound like?