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WATCH: Chris Watson National Gallery Film
Laurie Tuffrey , July 30th, 2015 13:16

The sound recordist fills us in on how he created his soundscape for Akseli Gallen-Kallela's Lake Keitele for the National Gallery's exhibition

It is a truth universally acknowledged that nothing will improve your day more than being party to something that Chris Watson's had a hand in. Whether that be playing in Cabaret Voltaire, the masses of sound recording work he's done for the BBC, his solo records on Touch or even specific one-off installations, such as the brilliant Inside The Circle Of Fire, his sound map of his hometown Sheffield, which we interviewed him about last year, it's never less than wonderfully evocative and though-provoking, with the added benefit of the sound of black kites swooping over the River Mara or the crepuscular sonics of Blackamoor being quite transportive from the lukewarm coffee you're sipping at your desk.

His latest work is as one of six artists asked by the National Gallery to produce a response in sound to one of their paintings for their Soundscapes exhibition, with the other contributors including Nico Muhly, Susan Philipsz, Jamie xx, Gabriel Yared and Cardiff and Miller. Watson chose Akseli Gallen-Kallela's 1905 painting Lake Keitele; take a look at it here. Now, the gallery have kindly given us a first look at a film of Watson recording his soundscape (there's a video for each artist) for the depiction of the Finnish lake, heading to Kielder Water in Northumberland to capture the sound of its lakeshore and forests. Watch it above and read Suzie McCracken's review of the exhibition, which runs until September 6, here.