We are pleased to celebrate the release of Lexicon of the Mouth: Poetics and Politics of Voice and the Oral Imaginary, the third publication of Brandon LaBelle's sonic research and auditory investigations. Following his previous works, Background Noise: Perspectives on Sound Art (2006) and Acoustic Territories: Sound Culture and Everyday Life (2010), LaBelle brings his attention to questions of voice and orality.
Lexicon of the Mouth surveys the oral cavity as the central channel by which self and surrounding are brought into relation. Leading to questions of embodiment and sensuality, attachment and loss, locution and the nonsensical, LaBelle expands understandings of voice to support a range of oral expressions by which acts of agency and communion may be found. Lexicon of the Mouth aims for a viscous, poetic, and resonant discourse of subjectivity, detailed through the “micro-oralities” of laughing and whispering, stuttering and reciting, eating and kissing, among others. Subsequently, voice and vocality are unsettled in favor of an epistemology of the oral, highlighting how the tongue, the lips, and the throat enable powerful forms of resistance, attachment, and conversation, as well as radical imagination and creativity.
Lexicon of the Mouth brings us to the center of an oral territory, revealing the poetics and politics that perform as soon as we open our mouth.
Brandon LaBelle is an artist and writer working with sound culture, voice, and questions of agency. He develops and presents artistic projects and performances within a range of international contexts, often working collaboratively and in public. Recent projects include "Civic Center", La Casa Encendida, Madrid, "Sixth Housing Estate", South London Gallery, London, and "Hobo College", Marrakech Biennial parallel project. His previous books, Background Noise: Perspectives on Sound Art (2006) and Acoustic Territories: Sound Culture and Everyday Life (2010) are also published by Bloomsbury. He is the editor of Errant Bodies Press and Professor at the Bergen Academy of Art and Design, Norway.