"What science now reveals to us
the communicative intent of other living things
will appear comically shallow to us in a hundred years."
In the mid-1980’s, a small notice in the local paper caught my eye. A man by the name of David Dunn had become fascinated by a previously little-known sound world inside small ponds, and was going to give a presentation at a nearby Audubon center. I was one of a couple dozen people present that night to hear his recordings; I can’t speak for any of the others, but these two ears were decisively blown away. First, Dunn took us into an utterly unexpected soundscape; but even more groundbreaking for me was the introduction he offered to the creative use of field recordings to weave compositions that take us deep into new ways of listening. This was the Big Bang that led to the emergence of EarthEar over a decade later.
David Dunn is a composer and, maybe, an acoustic ecologist. He rarely presents concerts or installations and instead prefers to lecture and engage in site-specific interactions or research-oriented activities. Current projects include the sonification of deterministic chaotic systems, research into the bioacoustics of bark beetles and entomogenic climate change, research on ultrasonic audio phenomena in both human and non-human environments, design of inexpensive wave-guides and transducer systems for environmental sound monitoring, and the design of self-organizing autonomous sound systems for spawning interaction between artificial and natural non- human systems. In 2005 he was the recipient of the Alpert Award for Music and the Henry Cowell Award in 2007. He lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He can be reached at artscilab (at) comcast.net.