Concrete sound mirrors used to prevent coastal attacks in the UK after World War I were captured by Piercarlo Quecchia in this photo series.
Audio mirrors are passive disc-shaped structures used to reflect and concentrate acoustic waves. They were used in the 1920s to stop planes going to the beach.
They were mostly constructed of concrete two to three meters in diameter and could be found on the southeastern and eastern coasts of England at one time.
Quecchia wanted to show how these devices took an architectural form in its series called Sound Mirrors. He photographed the last 13 mirrors left on the English coast.
"They represent an incredible demonstration of how sound can form a physical form: both the radius of curvature and the dimensions of the dishes are studied and designed according to the frequency of the sound they should reflect," said Quecchia.
The precise shape and curve of the mirrors allow the operator to concentrate the sound in a single focal point from which to use microphones and headphones to listen. The dimensions are matched to the sound waves created by aircraft engines.
Before the creation of advanced radar and electronic technologies, surveillance systems were simply an extension of the human senses. The giant audio mirrors, almost 100 years old, are now weathered and abandoned. The photographer hopes his photos will give them some dignity and value.
Quecchia is currently located in Basel, where he works with an architecture studio, but continues photography as a freelancer.
"For me, photography is essentially a tool for understanding and telling the truth. I focus mainly on architectural and social dynamics," he said.
"I have always been fascinated by the abandoned buildings, especially the changing roles according to different historical periods."
Quecchia discovered Britain's audio mirrors through an image he saw on the cover of a UK-based psychedelic rock band.
After researching the locations, he used the satellite image from Google Maps to determine the exact location of the mirrors.
Recent Blog Posts