Metaphone Vanalinn


A Metaphone literally breathes fresh air into your phone calls. The world’s first set of Metaphones, Metaphone Vanalinn, is installed in the old town of Tallinn, Estonia, 10 July to 15 August 2011.

How to Metaphone:

Call +37254630742.

Have a friend call +37254634405 at the same time.

Your conversation is carried out through the air in between the Metaphones where it mixes with the local soundscape and bystanders may overhear and join your conversation.

How Does It Work?

Each Metaphone installation consists of two stainless steel speakerphones facing each other a couple of feet apart, each equipped with a directed microphone, a speaker, and a phone number. Have someone call the second speakerphone while you call the first one. Your conversation is carried out through the air in between the speakerphones.

Cutting the Wire

Unlike most contemporary communication protocols, the physical routing of the infrastructure is the essence of the Metaphone service.

Although a Metaphone call is no louder than a normal outdoor conversation it is still clearly audible for people on site, creating a new kind of trilateral communication space.

During a Metaphone call the acoustic ambience of a third, intermediate location is added to the conversation and the conversation seeps out into the local soundscape. As the phone call leaps from electrical signals, into physical soundwaves and back into electrical signals, it crosses paths and mixes with the particular accoustic, political and social landscape of the Metaphone.

Making Metaphone Vanalinn

Metaphone Vanalinn is supported by Nordic Culture Point and is realised in collaboration with Tuned City Tallinn.