An artwork in which optical readers transform celluloid into musical compositions has won the €10,000 first prize for Best Sound Art in the PowSOLO Awards.
The winning piece, selected from 116 entries to the international open call, is by the artist Enrique de Castillo. His piece, entitled Phonoptics Readers, creates a constant stream of musical compositions by reading patterns designed on cinematographic film.
With a jury that includes composer Ryuichi Sakamoto, Pow Academy founder Mark Berman, and members from Colección SOLO board, the PowSOLO Awards also conferred three runner-up prizes in the categories Discovery of the Year, Invention of the Year and Viral of the Year, each receiving €1,000 in prize money, as well as a further Special Mention.
A collaboration between Colección SOLO and Powland Network, an Amsterdam-based collective dedicated to promoting sound art, the PowSOLO Awards aim to acknowledge the best international works in this artistic field, supporting creation, promotion and research in sound art.
Artwork of the Year
The €10,000 top prize, Best Sound Art, has been awarded to a piece created in 2020 by the Spanish artist, Enrique del Castillo. It is made up of two hand-made optical readers which run simultaneously to play two rolls of 35 mm film, which, in turn, are printed with a variety of geometrical patterns. These readers translate light into sound, producing an ever-changing stream of compositions.
“The pieces are unique compositions with an abstract sound rich in texture,” explains del Castillo.
Phonoptics Readers was chosen by the jury for “the artistic worth and sound aesthetics of a piece that mechanically transforms visual representations into constantly changing sound creations”.
Enrique del Castillo is an artist and musician who studied Fine Arts at the University of Granada, Spain. He has exhibited at a range of galleries, sound art and experimental musical festivals, including CCCB Barcelona (Spain), Loophole Berlin (Germany) and the LPM festival in Rome (Italy).