Saturday, November 26, 2005

Had a conceptual breakthrough with a sound art installation that I'm working on (i.e., planning) today. Tentatively I'm calling it "Connective Emergence: A Sound Art Installation." The basic idea to create a sound space that isolates the viewer/listener, and interacts with their presence. There will be two separate sound generating units, and both will interact with the audience, and this will all take place in a smallish portable enclosure that will be built out of PVC pipe, styrofoam, cardboard and sheets. The audience will have to enter the space to interact with the installation.

The first sound generating system will consist of a series of microphones hanging from the top of the installation, and a mixer, various effects (such as delays, phasers, flangers, and reverbs), and two portable FM transmitters, and a bunch of small, cheap FM radios hanging in various places around the space. As an audience member gets close to a microphone, their voice will reverberate all around the space, as the sound of their voice is sent to the mixer, then through two separate effects paths, and then broadcast on two separate radio frequencies, and then picked up by the various FM radios.

The second sound generating system will consist of a pad or mat (like this one), with each pad or sensor wired to a key on a cheap MIDI keyboard, and then the MIDI signal from the keyboard sent to a MIDI USB interface like this into my laptop, and from there into Ableton Live. As the audience steps on the mat, they will trigger MIDI notes in Live, controlling a VST synth or two (maybe Cygnus since I'm going for a 'space' feel here). The result will be amplified into the space.

At the end of the space will be a small platform with several circuit bent toys that the audience can play with and make noise with. More than likely the laptop and mixer and so on will be hidden outside of the enclosure, behind it, with a small space for me to operate/meddle if needed.

I'm also thinking about getting several sets of christmas lights that slowly fade in and out instead of blinking, and putting them in some opague glass enclosures, for extra visual ambience.

Not sure if I could actually convince anyone to let me put this up at an art event. It's going to end up being a pretty wierd experience, I think. I'm hoping I could do something like this at a future Art Amiss event.

If anyone is willing to collab on maybe some video stuff for this, let me know. I'm fairly clueless about that.


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