marylou x atelier Luma

‘anthem of the camargue fauna’
design residency 2018-2019

collaboration with Tour du Valat
(research institute for the conservation
of mediterranean wetlands)


there are a lot of things to say about it, so here we go: 


in general, visitors to the natural park of camargue remain focused on the region’s iconic species (wetlands’ birds like flamingos), without much interest in the species of areas most used by man: agricultural environments. indeed, water birds are the region’s symbols. as the general attention is not focused on the entire fauna, it induces an unbalanced representation of the species of this territory. and if the safeguarding policy is today an argument widely used by the local tourism sector, it would be interesting to represent the entire  eco-system of the camargue to protect. how can one then consider a total valuation of the species of a given territory in a relevant way?

sound design can truly be used as a preventive tool, and can complement an ecological scientific approach. in the camargue, many bird species are in decline because of climate changes or because of the pesticides used in agriculture.

sounds are immediate environmental indicators of the climate change’s consequences. they are more sensitive, faster and precise in their language. they reveal what can be hidden in an image while offering another reading of the territory. creating an evolutionary sound library of the camargue fauna to follow its evolution year by year, and developping at the same time a sound mediation device encouraging an intelligible listening of the diversity of camargue species can make the link between the scientific observation and a general public sensitizing experience of the fauna’s diversity.

today, I started the creation of an experimental sound cartography representating a part of the diversity of the species starting from recordings made in may 2018 in the ‘rousty bridge’ area in the park.









this is a composition that reveals differently a territory thanks to a variety of decliningor growing species, from wetlands or agricultural areas, whose common point is that their sound pattern was a marker of environmental evolution. my work proposes a temporal dilation of the sounds, to encourage a better perception by placing the various birds in the space in the manner of an orchestra.


and here are the instruments:







(when you slow down a sound, it's like enlarging the body of its source. if we slow down birds songs, it's as if their size became closer to that of the man. their songs approache the sound frequencies corresponding to those of the human voice: those that automatically attract the most attention of our brain to understand a language and encourage a better focus, and that’s what we want)

this diffusion is thought of as a speculative stroll in this orchestra that could become a pedagogic soundtrack for the visitors of Luma Arles.







you can go back here





Mark