Richard Bentley is a sound artist and researcher whose work explores contemplative listening and sound art practices and the experience of positive silence. This interest is manifested through listenings, writings, field recordings, composition, soundwalks and the development of participatory sound art exercises.
In his practice, Richard explores the interplay of mind and soundscape. Phenomenological enquiry and documentation, through field recording, reflections and stream-of-consciousness transcription, typically provide the starting point for work, unearthing themes that are shared and developed through writings, sound works and a host of interdisciplinary and participatory arts work.
Informed by this artistic practice and drawing from the fields of sound studies, art therapy and positive psychology, Richard's research investigates contemplative sound art practices for wellbeing. His recent PhD research explored the experience of positive silence as freedom from distraction and the influence of the soundscape on both present-centred awareness and psychological distancing. In addition to contributing to academic and public discourse on the topic, research outcomes include the development of participatory sound art practices that support wellbeing in both clinical and non-clinical settings.
Richard is a researcher with the Sonic Art Research Unit at Oxford Brookes University and has recently completed his doctorate. He is ambassador for Hush City App, Silent Space and is the UK representative for Quiet Parks International. He is also an Associate Artist with the Jelly arts organisation based in Reading and Associate Lecturer in sound art at both Oxford Brookes. For past projects please visit the projects page.
Richard also releases music on the Buried Treasure record label with 'Revbjelde' and has developed bespoke audio products for clients such as The Woodland Trust, Crisis, Intelligent Health, The Roald Dahl Museum, Nature Nurture and a host of community arts organisations. For more information about his commercial and community arts work, click here.