What does a voice actually look like? Artist Giovanna Iorio explores the relationship between the audio and the image of that voice, stunningly rendered in the form of spectrograms.
What is a Voice Portrait?
A voice portrait is the portrait of a voice.
How do you make a voice portrait?
Starting with a sound track of a few minutes I produce the spectrogram.
So what is a spectrogram?
A spectrogram is the fingerprint of a voice. It’s a graph that makes the voice visible.
It seems simple… But the colours? Where do they come from?
Colours are the result of a complicated algorithm that studies tones and nuances. Then there are also aesthetic choices and reworking. To give you an example: I immerse the voice in a kind of dark room in which I dive sounds. The result is spectacular.
How do you feel when you make a portrait of a voice?
It makes me feel very good to create portraits of the voices. It is as if a person’s soul materialises before my eyes. I’m going to produce portraits of all the poets of the past that I love, to see the shape and colours of their voices.
What do you do with the portraits?
I try to show them: in the UK we are at the second exhibition. In Italy in January the exhibition was in Salerno. In Spring an exhibition here in the UK…in Hertford.
What if VP become very popular? What do you think?
I think that spreading poetry and voice portraits satisfies me deeply.
Look at the catalogue of the Exhibition in London
Look at the catalogue of the Exhibition in Salerno
Giovanna is a poet and sound artist based in London. Her work has been exhibited in UK and Italy. "Voice Portraits" is a collection of poets' voices turned into spectrograms. She has selected poets from all over the world, from the past and the present, turning their voices into a multicoloured and vibrant gallery of portraits: each voice has created a unique painting for a multi sensorial and fulfilling aesthetic experience of the human voice. Every voice is unique and the voice portraits reveal the beauty of each poem.