A project in cooperation with echoraum and Alcôme
Supported by Stadt Wien Kultur, BMKÖS, SKE austromechana, echoraum, ALCÔME, Sacem and Copie Privée



Maja Osojnik

Singer, Composer, Improvising Electroacoustic Musician, Sound Artist, Producer

Maja Osojnik was born 1976 in Slovenia, lives and works in Vienna, Austria. As a singer, composer, improvising electroacoustic musician, sound artist, producer, mostly using voice, paetzold bass recorders, own field recordings, DJ-CD, tapes and other lo-fi electronic devices, toys, trash and found objects. Maja made a name for herself in different musical fields, such as early music, contemporary, experimental, jazz, free improvisation, sound art and heavier music. Moving in limbo between analogue and digital art, virtual and real spaces, she tries to expand, deconstruct and reinterpret the tonal spectra of mentioned instruments and to assign them new roles – a process reminiscent of building anagrams. In her Compositions she combines love for simple songs, experimental electro-acoustic, abstract music, early and contemporary classical music as well as elements and forms of noise and rock. The real, the surreal, the fragility, in which both the destructive, abysmal, dark phantasm, but also the beauty, the elegance, the strength are depicting certainty, manifest another engine that defines Maja’s musical creation.

She composes music for dance, theater, film, radio plays, sound instalations and various ensembles and orchestras and writes lyrics, that she performs with her bands. For her live performances and sampling she uses her own built sound libraries like for example, the so-called “Rejects” – a library of unwillingly destroyed sounds, glitches, soundwaste that happened in her own recordings or “broken pianos” – a collection of the sounds of detuned pianos. She gave Workshops in improvised Music in Austria, Slovenia and Korea, founded Maja’s Musik Markt, Listening Sessions and co-organised the 7th Viennese Soulfood Festival in 2013 and has been awarded several prizes and scholarships.

EXPOSITION #01 / DOORWAYS #10 (2022/2023)

A sound installation for 9 speakers, composed for the forest in Meiernigg (the place where Mahler's composing house is located).
A forest. A place of transformation and change. A border area between this world and the hereafter. A lung. An elixir of life. A green house full of layers. A retreat. A silence that is not silent.

There's no such thing as silence - John Cage

When the first lockdown in Vienna was ordered in March 2020, a stillness settled over the city, as if the forest with its properties was spreading through the streets, over the blocks of houses. The traffic stopped. The city became a retreat, a refuge. This silence offered the opportunity for selfreflection, for daydreaming. She gave us the time to turn down the inner noise and to cultivate mindfulness - acknowledgment and appreciation of the present moment. The hearing was given a sensual opportunity again. It didn't have to constantly block out, filter, a background noise, but could perceive attentively, recognising that silence is needed in order to realise that there is no silence. When you no longer have to listen or think away, you can start listening. The city was linked to the forest.

In Rauschenberg's "White Painting" manner, the piece refers to the regained perception of stillness. It deals with the subtle changes in sound. Through shading, microscopic deviations, transitions, layers, alienation of the original, the piece draws attention to the essence of what is there, of what is on site. The composition is a kind of rotary knob, a diaphragm that brings changes into focus in a highly sensitive way, trying to readjust sharpness again and again in order to capture the environment, the sound nature of the place.

A pas de deux between nature and cyborg nature.

With the sound composition “Exposition #01” I want to create a kind of musical translation of a sound map of this particular place. The composition overwrites, stretches, alienates and acoustically camouflages the local nature. The field sound recordings are manipulated, reduced, filtered and tonally changed in various ways. Musique Concrète Reverse - Blocks of nature sounds are replaced, interpreted by the sounds of musical instruments, are thus transposed into a musical language. By playing back the digitized parts, a new aural architecture is created on top of the natural soundscape. The result is a collage, a pas de deux between nature and cyborg nature, determined by the number, proximity and distance of the mobile-phone owners.

Auditory gymnastics

Similar to an interactive game, the composition is conceived as a kind of listening exercise for one to nine people. Nine sound maps – resembling graphic scores – are placed at select spots around Mahler’s composing hut. Each represents an instrument in the composition, which the audience may access via mobile phone and QR code. It is up to the visitors to decide whether to enjoy this polyphonic work as a contemplative solo event or as a communal experience. Exposition #01 is an on-site acoustic interplay with nature.

The piece was composed to be listened to in the forest, for the birds and other animals, creatures to interact with it. For the listening session in Echoraum, i decided to make a new sound mapping by adding a new layer to exiting sound.  This new layer is built with samples from recordings and concerts, which i performed in Echoraum over the Period of the last 15 Years. A Hommage to a beloved Echoraum so to speak.