This paper will present a detailed and extensive account on “auditory diagramming”: a practice of aural-environmental research and design of environments developed by Alex Arteaga at the Auditory Architecture Research Unit (Berlin University of the Arts).
The paper will be structured in three parts. In the first, the conceptual framework of this practice will be outlined. This will include an elementary description of the auditory architecture—a new approach to the relationships between aurality and environment—the definition of its key concept “Klangumwelt” (“aural environment” or, literally, “aural surrounding world”) and a basic introduction into enactivism—the cognitive theory that underpins the auditory architectural approach.
The second part will consist of a detailed description of the practice, first including an outline of the modes of hearing and listening that enable the realization of an auditory diagram and the possible phenomena that can emerge by performing each of this modes, and second a step-by-step description of how to diagram.
The third part will be a reflection on two phases in the use of the diagram: its realization and its “reading”. These two phases will be interpreted respectively relating to the concepts of aesthetics (as aisthesis) and poetics (as poiesis).
Each part will be written by performing a different writing practice: academic writing (part 1), “instructions of use” (part 2), and a particular form of essay-writing that Alex Arteaga terms “explorative essay.” He developed this practice in books like transient senses or more recently, Thinking Conditioning as Practice.