buy auri

Buy Auri - Union Square - Nova Iorque - 2012 

A sum of € 1.00 is paid to people in exchange for listening to three minutes of sound on a pair of headphones. This value relates to the amount of time it takes to  listen, and the average cost of commercialized music on the web. 

Buy Auri - Union Square - New York - 2012 


The time allotted to listening to sound material creates an intangible product: Auri (the commercial, immaterial, listening time). This is the logic explored through Buy Auri on the streets of São Paulo and New York. The performance plays with the paradox of intangible products, like music, in commercial contexts and the place of perception as a creative experience that can be remunerated.

Buy Auri - Relevant Musik - Berlim - 2013 


Buy Auri - Festival Música Livre - SESC Pompéia - São Paulo - 2008


The experience of listening to music has undergone many changes—from domestic appliances (turntables, radios, etc.) to portable devices, such as Walkmans, to mobile sound systems, to the boom of MP3 players, cell phones, iPods. Debates over the purchase, sale, and transfer of music using file sharing on Internet p2p platforms (such as Napster, eMule, Soulseek, Kazaa, among others), as well as the decision of record labels to sell music over the internet, reveal a radical transformation of the meaning of music's value when digital content is transformed into the context of the world wild web data flow.



Buy Auri was created in 2005 during the height of the informal trade of mp3s, sold on CDs, on the streets of Brazil. This approach represents a parallel to the sharing and distribution of music over the Internet. The performance combines two common phenomena found on Brazilian streets and squares: advertising by gold traders who use placards with the words: "Compro Ouro" (Buy Gold), and the selling of CDs by street vendors.

Buy Auri moves trade issues in web music featuring the “Auri” as a consumer product for sale in urban space, which references the informal market of the street vendor (camelô) in the Brazilian context. If the music business has changed radically, so has what it means to listen to music. Why buy recorded music if you can get it for free? What is the meaning of paying to listen to recorded music?

Music here is posed as a complex field involving the trade of immaterial goods, regulation of intellectual property, as well as the place of the listener as co-creator and producer of meaning.

Considering the diversity and quantity of sound media available today, listening occurs an incessant state of consumption. Mobile gadgets transmit not just music, but a listening behavior, which often occurs in a bubble, where it is not important what you are listening to, but rather that you are consuming by listening. In this context, hearing is a productive act, generating a virtual congestion in the market. Buy Auri tries to deal with some of these aspects that relate to listening and related strategies to a perception economy.



The amount I paid in cash to the audience is calculated as an average cost of music sold over the Internet, such as by iTunes, which amounts to € 1.00 for about 3 minutes of listening. The first intervention version offered the possibility of participated online. The participant would received an email with the sound allotted in a link. After to listen the song the audience would received € 1.00 deposited in the bank account informed via email.


Guided by the failures that digital processing makes possible, the piece of music I create called Reticulated Ear (2005-6) was designed to deal with frequencies in the limit of perception that digital makes possible. The piece proposal is to operate in frequency ranges which operates at the threshold of audibility, acting over low and high frequencies, limited by the compression algorithm MPEG Layer 3 (MP3). The sound piece explores textures that border regions inaudible through certain glitches that the mp3 algorithm fails to reproduce correctly. The result generates certain flaws and residues in the sound material or sometimes ceasing to sound.

Version 2013 - For the performance in Berlin, I created a new version of the original sound track called Reticulated Ear (2006). This track was compressed in 64 versions of mp3 format, using various combinations of sample rates between 8 and 96 KHz and bit rate between 8 and 320 kbit/s. What the listener heard through the headphones is a collage of short excerpts from those 64 different compressed versions.


  • Nov 2006 Av. Paulista evento Respública - São Paulo.
  • Set  2007 SESC Pompeia evento Música Livre - São Paulo.
  • Jun 2012 319 Scholes / Union Square - New York 
  • Jun 2013 Festival Relevante Musik - Villa Elisabeth - Berlin

Artigo na Revista NEURAL.IT