Tapping the air: micro-FM transmission at Lizard Wireless Telegraphy Station

Sebastiane Hegarty (Photographer)

    Research output: Creative Practice OutputsPerformance


    In 1901, Marconi’s Lizard Wireless Telegraphy Station was the site of the first ‘over-the-horizon’ wireless transmission. Prior to this, it was believed that wireless communication was restricted to the optical horizon. But on the 23rd January 1901, the reception of a simple di-di-dit, signalled not only the letter ‘s’, but also an escape from the visible and present, a flight from the material into the airy immaterial: ‘Electricity made angels of us all.’ (Carpenter,1976)
    Tapping the air is an on-going research project performed through two, covert residencies at the Lizard Wireless Telegraphy Station in Cornwall. Each ‘residence’ has concluded with an unannounced micro-FM transmission, broadcast to an unseen and unknowing audience from the site of the Telegraphy Station Tuned-in through six portable radios this performed transmission is re-composed from field-recordings gathered in a local landscape haunted by the discarded technologies of listening and communication. The live transmissions in landscape took place in 2017 and 2018.
    This practice as research project has resulted in several outputs in the form of the original micro-FM transmissions, radio broadcasts, live performances and sound works. The research has been disseminated through peer reviewed papers at conferences and symposium in the UK and Eire.
    Original languageEnglish
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2018


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