Impressed by the abundance of noise in the City of Hong Kong, we set out on a quest to investigate the sources of this omnipresent intrusion on our senses. Seeking out the origins of the everyday acoustic background, we very soon pondered on the quality of noise. Is it something undesirable that has to be purged, or is suppressing it a form of censorship? Why do we have a need for both silence and disorder? Is there a ideal balance between the two?
Inspired by the principle of noise cancelling, we constructed a space where in theory, three phase-inverted sources of noise recordings we did in Hong Kong should cancel each other out and add up to silence. Viewers may enter this space to experience the interaction of the three sources and with luck, perhaps, find a small pocket of silence amidst the chaos.
As expected, the noise cancelling function did not work out perfectly. It was, however, up to each individual to explore the meanings of the experiment. Can one indeed cancel noise with more noise?