John Connell is a sound designer with a strong interest in consciousness and the mind. A long time DJ and producer, Connell was heavily involved in the evolving techno scene in the early 00s in Tokyo where he lived and worked as a strategist. Holding residencies at two of Japan's most definitive clubs, Yellow and Womb, he performed with talent such as Fumiya Tanaka and Akiko Kiyama and the likes of Ricardo Villalobos and Richie Hawtin.
In 2011 he moved to Berlin to focus on conceptual music projects, releasing soundscapes on New Kanada and Colour8. Strongly influenced by extensive meditative practices over the last decade, his sets at festivals such as Berlin Atonal explore dimensions of consciousness through sonic meditations and notions of inner and outer space. In early 2014 he joined 4DSOUND firstly in developing an experimental sound and meditation workshop method based on his Breathwork and Sound project, before taking up the role of Creative Director and helping shape 4DSOUND’s vision moving forward.
In collaboration with visual artist Florence To, Connell developed NOQTURNL, an audiovisual meditation exploring collective dreamstate. The audience is invited to spend the night in the 4DSOUND system. A group of listeners are immersed in a spatial experience while they flit around the threshold between waking state and dream. Slow, pulse driven musical constructs, vast landscapes of sound and visual patterns develop over hours as the listeners drifts in and out of sleep, blurring the boundaries between dream environment and physical space: in doing so, allowing conscious access to the vivid, intuitive imagery and sensation within the borders of dream experience.
'Landscapes, sequences, experiences ... The sound blends with your own essence in some other still unknown dimension, where there are no limits of thought and that, for now, is relegated to the world of dreams.'
NOQTURNL was premiered at TodaysArt 2015, as the pivotal piece in 4DSOUND: Circadian, a 24-hour programme exploring the conscious and subconscious states of the listener throughout the day and night.
Photo: Barbara Klein