Rebecca’s main research interests are in the fields of sound, listening, performance and writing. Rebecca is particularly interested in practice-led research methodologies for investigating aural attention, affect, mood and atmosphere through listening, text and vocal delivery techniques.

Rebecca’s work is informed by situated transdisciplinary interests in politics, site, and aesthetics. She is currently making situated accounts of sonic-driven scientific experiments and eavesdropping on the first few minutes of the Universe.

Hearing the Invisible

Artist development is currently undervalued and increasingly difficult to justify as budgets for creative work and practice-based projects are reduced. Critical thinking requires infrastructure and the work of relationship building is at risk. A need has arisen to foreground the invisible emotional and intellectual labour taking place even before an artist arrives at the studio or rehearsal space.

Hearing the Invisible’ aims to address this by bringing together two artists and artist-led organisations from Scotland, Spain, and Northern Ireland via a series of exchanges. This pivots around the practices of two artists, Rebecca Collins (Scotland) and Silvia Zayas (Spain), whose individual practices engage in relationship building across disciplines and international geographies. The motivation for this collaboration is based on the use of methodologies of creative practice which, having briefly encountered each other at a workshop organised by Rebecca in 2022, both felt they had more to share. Both artists, in their practice, put emphasis on the methodologies they use which require substantial effort.

The project has five phases which enable the artists to have an in-depth engagement with each other’s practice. Phase I sees the development of a lecture performance about the emotional labour involved in Rebecca’s work to be undertaken in-person via a residency at AZALA LaSierra, Álava, Spain. In Phase II the focus shifts to Zayas’ practice as the coast of Barcelona is replaced with the post industrial landscape of Belfast, with support from Catalyst Arts, Belfast. Phase III (is online) and refracts the methodological findings from the previous two phases into a booklet for circulation in artist-run spaces with support from Dorothy Michaels

The project documents aspects of uncertainty, struggle, relationship building, kinship and kindness – all elements that ultimately inform the substrata of artistic practice.


Funded by the Four Nations International Fund through Arts Council England, Arts Council Northern Ireland, Arts Council Wales, Creative Scotland and Wales Arts International.

Parameters for Understanding Uncertainty (P4UU)

Rebecca Collins wearing P4UU T-Shirt in Office B14

Parameters for Understanding Uncertainty (P4UU) is an artistic research project organised and led by artist researcher Rebecca Collins. The project investigates how methodologies used in creative practice meet those in the physical sciences.

P4UU draws on expertise in creative practice, particle physics, and media and communications to investigate how sound technology is used to push at the limits of what we know about the Universe. Invisible matter often described as ‘dark matter’ or neutrinos refers to the tiniest particles continually in circulation in our daily lives. Dark matter, more abundant than ordinary matter, is notoriously difficult to detect. P4UU makes use of sonic detection in the form of auto-ethnographic accounts unfolding from field visits to sonic-inflected searches for dark matter, the setting up of a series of art/science encounters and barely visible infrastructures to hold conversations and ongoing exchanges across disciplinary boundaries.

The project has brought together artists, scientists, media & communication specialists, mathematicians, engineers, fluxus scholars, musicologists, sociologists, CEOs, ethnographers, human geographer, musicians, art historians, curators, film makers, and anyone curious enough to suspend disciplinary constraints.

Project outcomes include the exhibition ‘Listening to Dark Matter’, a series of academic publications, an experimental sound art album (forthcoming 2024), a podcast, a series of curated seminars and an artist book (forthcoming 2024).

Funded by a Royal Society of Edinburgh Saltire Early Career Fellowship Grant awarded to Rebecca Collins in 2022-2023.

For the duration of 2022-23 Rebecca Collins is artist-in-residence at the Instituto de Física Teórica (IFT UAM-CSIC) to carry out this work.

Stolen Voices

Stolen Voices is collaborative research inquiry by Rebecca Collins and Johanna Linsley, with rotating collaborators, inspired by eavesdropping.

The work imagines public spaces as semi-fictional constructions, as if an Agatha Christie novel has shattered over a town and fragments caught in the local soundscape. Summoned to these spaces, the artist researchers, Collins & Linsley, seek access, navigate pathways and decode traces of an as-yet-undefined event. Stolen Voices particularly investigates the UK coast. The sense of borders and border crossings, evidence of lost technologies, shifting economies and ways of life, and the romance of the sea – all of these add up to prime eavesdropping territory. The project takes a variety of forms, from participatory workshops to new music composition, experimental performance, community gig nights, an installation called the Eavesdropbox, an album (Stolen Voices 001 shortlisted for a New Music Scotland Award, 2021), an article and a book publication Sonic Detection: Necessary Notes for Art & Performance under contract with Punctum Books (forthcoming, 2023).

Stolen Voices