Cacophony (24Hr News Cycle)

Stefani Byrd

Six Channel Audio Installation


This installation consists of six head height speakers arranged in a 12 foot radius in a darkened room. The viewer must enter the beam of the overhead spotlight to be fully immersed in the sounds emitted from the speakers. The soundscape was created by editing the audio from network news coverage of mass shootings in schools and public spaces from the last 15 years, starting from the Columbine shooting in 1999.

All of the words from the reportage were removed, leaving only the in-between moments when the reporters, commentators, or interviewees pause to catch their breath. In the removal of the speculative and sensationalized language common in contemporary tv news coverage, the spaces in between that are the pauses and the breath become more revealing and representative of the emotional gravity of the aftermath of unfathomable acts of violence. In this installation, years of reportage on tragedy and violence are edited into one concise abstraction.


Sponsored in part by Polk Audio

Special Thanks: Fernanda Navarro