Audioprojekt/avdio projekt »Afterlife Woodland«: French & Mottershead

French & Mottershead (UK)
Afterlife Woodland
Audio: 18 min

Afterlife Woodland by UK artist duo French & Mottershead is an audio artwork that transports the listener to the most intimate of places; places which paradoxically none of us will ever actually experience: the body’s decomposition after death. It describes in visceral yet poetic detail the course of a human body’s decay into a woodland environment, and is experienced via a spoken narrative created using insights gathered from forensic anthropologists and ecologists. Word, voice, bodily sensations, and synchronicity of natural sounds, work on the listener’s imagination to create a self-portrait of what happens to their own body after death. Rather than being cast aside, the decaying body for once takes centre stage. As the narrative unfolds, we reluctantly graft its decomposing organs, muscles, tissues, bones and limbs onto our own body until we become one with it. The effect has been described as ›oddly peaceful and reassuring‹ and ›amazingly poetic‹.

Text: French & Mottershead
Voice: Tanya Myers
Science Adviser: Dr. Carolyn Rando, Forensic Anthropologist, University College London
Image: Paul Blakemore