Radio Art: Transmission & Streaming as a Creative Medium by Jon Panther

Featured Artist/

Jon Panther

Course Contents

RADIO ART, TRANSMISSION and STREAMING as a CREATIVE MEDIUMThis series will be a 6 x 10 minutes Units/Videos exploring the potential of this mediumas an alternative for supporting sonic arts practice. It will introduce the viewer to the aesthetic of this practice as much as technical requirements to get up and running.

Unit 1: Will commence by describing the progression of lessons. In the first unit, I will give abackground of this form. An exploration of the history of Radio-art and experimental practices in sonic arts and radio transmission that date back to the beginning of the 20thcentury while looking at how the materiality of the technology delivers form as opposed toremediation - which is what we see in radio broadcast in its usual sense. We will cover Elektronische Musik (NWDR) studio in Germany (The birth of synthesis) and Pierre Schaeffer's Musique Concrete at Studio d'Essai de la Radiodiffusion Nationale in France (The birth of sampling). 

I will unpack the basic concepts of acousmatics ("the cause of the sound remains unseen") and it's relevance in this medium. This discussion will be accompanied by relevant illustrations and sonics examples. 

Unit 2: Will cover the basics of electromagnetic wave function and setting up your own FMtransmitter. Two options - either build a transmitter from components or acquire readymadecomponents online. I illustrate the process of aerial and transmitter requirements for settingup. Discuss who it is you wish to reach I.E. miniFM as realised by Tetsuo Kogawa or more far-reaching which either involves licencing or "pirate". Discussion accompanied by visuals of parts assembly. 

Unit 3: We look into online audio streaming and how this complements your transmission. Exploring setups available DIY or packages available through suppliers. At this point we can discuss the basic equipment required for most situations: 

• audio mixer 

• microphone and stand 

• other audio sources and computer programmes 

Will complete video by mentioning audio file editing and processing appearing in next unit. Illustrative accompaniment. 

Unit 4: This unit explores fixed media audio files for transmission/streaming and will look at various software applications for editing and audio processing. 

Unit 5: Here we will consider live sound for transmission/streaming and the area of sonificationof everyday objects with the use of manipulated and modified microphones, contact mics/piezos and how to be creative with them. 

Unit 6: The last unit discusses podcasting as an alternative. Although not transit in form, it has still become an important "after-the-event" accompaniment to radio. We look at where or when it is appropriate and which platforms may be suitable for your audience.


Jon Panther is a Sydney based Sonic and Radio-artist. He was born in New Zealand and based himself for many years in the UK where he graduated from the London College of Communication with an MA in Interactive Multimedia. After a number of years collaborating with various performers and musicians, Jon returned to Aoteoroa to complete his post graduate diploma in Music Studies specialising in Electroacoustic composition at Auckland University. He graduated (again!) with a MMusA Distinction Composition focusing on Telematic, Transmission and Radio-arts, Victoria University Wellington NZ. Jon started recording and performing under the name Audiotopsy in 1999 in the UK, Japan and Brazil, He has had works broadcast, performed and presented in the USA, Italy, UK, Ireland, NZ and Australia and has produced and presented sonic arts and new music radio programmes on FM community radio in Australasia. He has had the pleasure of having various works featured by Metanast UK, The Sonic Arts Forum UK, Hearsay International Audio Arts Festival Ireland, Helicotrema Italy and Jeu de temps/Times Play (JTTP) Cache Canada to name but a few! Jon is currently absorbed in his online streaming and narrowcast FM project DiffusionFM exploring generative composition systems for the medium of transmission. He, with DiffusionFM, is the Australian member for the Radio-arts network RADIA and has the honour of curating and producing content by local artists for international transmission. Shortly Jon will be commencing his PHD candidature exploring telematics as a medium for broadening ecology awareness.