Tunnels inside of a tunnel
The work on Sogno di un automobile has started with few days of the field recording in the tunnel Dubovica, Island of Hvar, in the time of Prix Marulić 2012. From the very beginning I didn’t think about making any kind of documentary though with the real and quite realistic sound documents I inevitably have to begun with.
Architecture of the sounds in the Dubovica tunnel was one of my experiences in the caves decades earlier when the caves used to be my studios, not once. It was the silences what fascinated me in these underground places, sometimes hundreds of meters deep, silences that can not be compared with any silence of any studio anywhere. Thanks the caves I made ”Resava cave”, ”Invasions”, ”Caves of my Ancestors”, ”Underwater cave” and some other, ever enjoying to play a cave sound miner role.
Caves usually have one entrance, for unlucky ones with no exit, mythology is full of such stories. Whenever happens that I find myself in some tunnel I try not to think about their standard everyday meaning, identifying tunnels as urban caves instead, tunnels as the sort of the caves with two entrance-exit. Mysterious tunnels or “secret passages” are a common element of the local folklore tradition all over the world from the ancient time. Thousands and thousands of legends about the caves and the secret underground passages are still living in written and unwritten forms. What I would be happy to do is to visit and make recording in some deserted tunnels where myths and stories are growing like mushrooms. There are so many similar legends of tunnels arisen and in connection with the more esoteric notions of channels or paths of earth energy.
Many of the tunnels have an authentic personality. Tunnel Dubovica on the island of Hvar is a young tunnel in a good shape, except the broken cement slabs paving the path for those who care about the tunnel, on which resonating slabs I was walking, using them as the percussion instrument.This tunnel still has not specific individuality like, e.g., another tunnel, a narrow underground passage under the mountain on the other side of the island, winding dark passageway, wet and slippery, which seem to been dug by some diluvium animals, not the people. Tunnel Dubovica looks more innocent. It’s a baby tunnel with amazingly different landscapes on its two sides and nothing else than that.
I didn’t find earth energy in Dubovica tunnel or met the exiled Cannibal from the ”Tempest” (what would be great to happen) Aeneas in the underworld or Sibyl chanting her fearful enigmas. What I found was psychedelic sound architecture of the space, cavernous silence that occasionally alternated with roars of motor monsters from either direction. Not esoteric earth energy but acoustic miracle and frightening howling and screaming of machineries what triggered my first steps from the sunny soundscape outside into the chthonic darkness inside, leading further into the tunnels of what we call consciousness and imagination.
Freud and Jung had various psychological interpretations of the symbolic meanings of tunnels and these may have a part to play in the origins of tunnel myths, they also could say some more about my own cavefilia or maybe my cavemania.
Sogno di un automobile has been awarded in 2013 at New York Festival’s International Radio Programs & Promos Competition.