William Dively found a really fascinating Kickstarter page that designed a platform for music using 3-d printed totems, Augmented Reality, and digital music to create a synesthetic experience for your music. It works by creating a code, like you might see used by shazam to digitally track music, but then it converts this code to a visual and then to a 3-dimensial, printable form. Then you can own a physical music totem. Then with the app, you can view the totem through a screen and it will animate the object with effects related to the song.
The effect is that the user feels like he or she is holding a piece of solidified music that comes to life when viewed through a looking glass. A really inspiring piece of art when music has become so ethereal and digitized that it almost no longer exists.
, a looking outwards in response to http://cmuems.com/2015c/kramser/09/17/kramser-looking-outwards-03/
i find this work to be just as techno-fetishistic as the others mentioned by Kevin Ramser in the aforementioned article. the inclusion of the memory-card, for example, a flourish surely to be rendered essentially unreadable in any context which the artifact may be actually performing its function of preserving the memory of the time/space/sculpture/feeling it is intended to is the little wireframe cherry on the cake.
i still appreciate the piece hugely. even the souvenir aspect of the pieces seems to be demonstrating the evolution of a single, collective memory locked to a time and space (i.e, a sculpture-artifact) into a displaced, collective experience replicable anywhere — making the memory itself invincible, untouchable by malicious forces due to its inhabiting of a collective of minds and machines.
this reinterpretation of the concept of a singular from the past into a multiple tied to the present (& the future, barring perhaps the memory-card) in response to the loss of the original singular form could only have occurred in the age of a collective memory strong enough to reconstruct the singular from just what was remembered of it, by mind or machine, is an amazing description of our world as it is now.
While looking through Kevin Ramser’s posts, I stumbled upon one regarding the work of Robert Henke. His installations marry light, sound, and algorithms, achieving experiences likened to synesthesia. The first work Keving posted, “Fragile Territories” definitely caught my interest first:
I think Henke’s work speaks a lot to the human mind…or at least mine. The movement of the laser beams and the hum makes me think of synapses firing, the busy-ness of thoughts and memories, and our connection to the world and each other. I agree that at times the project has a cold, bleak sense, but I also get a sense of calm from the installation. I would love to see an iteration of this using a tracking technology, responding to a body in a space, or also to see how other sound could affect the beams of light. But I definitely agree with Kevin’s point that the sound gives the light experiments a certain life.
I dug a little more into Robert Henke’s work, and found another project of interest – “ATOM”
ATOM’s soundtrack is much more aggressive and mechanical; nicely juxtaposed by the white, LED lit balloons that move along with the sound. In this project, the sound certainly takes the forefront, with the light affects, as well as the changing heights of the balloons, bringing the feeling of the music to a deeper, bodily place.
I looked at Jen’s post on sound – Looking Outwards 04. In her post she described Quartet, a sound environment first installed at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in 2012 (see video below). In this project the plants are outfitted with sensors that (explained in a very reductive way here) respond to interaction with/ presence of humans and produce MIDI tones. I appreciate this project for revealing plant properties that are intangible unless given these MIDI voices. While I do not think that data presentation always translates to some kind of appreciation or usefulness I feel like this project is very successful in expanding one’s notion of a plant’s existence. This expansion is conceptually simple but pretty exciting.
In the Looking Outwards from September 24th, Kelly Li wrote about Jean-Pierre Aube, who developed a project called Electrosmog. Using radios and antennas, Aube measures the electromagnetic fields of the city. This data is then translated into a visual display, over top pictures and sounds of the city. In this way, Aube is able to capture the unseen but very active digital side of the city. I agree with Kelly that this project is so interesting as it displays activity that we normally would never be able to see.
Here is Kelly’s Looking Outwards: here
and to the project’s page: here
For this looking outwards, I decided to look at Maggie’s DigFab looking outwards Neri Oxman’s “Mushtari”. Although I am not normally a fan of wearables, this was extremely interesting to me as it was not just fashion trends but also helps people physically. Although the arts tend to fix the soul and mind, it rarely manifests it’s help physically. I really agree with Maggie that the fact that this piece does not unnecessarily sexualize the subject as a lovely part of this project. I am unfortunately not very familiar with biology, so I do not know how the micro-organisms in the clothing would help. With that being said, the idea of housing living organisms in our clothing purposefully is a really interesting idea that I hope is expanded upon in the future
Nitesh’s Looking Outward addressed the Silk app created by Yuri Vishnevsky featured here. Much like Nitesh, I found this project very fascinating because of its ability to create art, shape, form, and meaning through the visual effects of code. It’s very interesting because the user plays a part of creating the art through the ability to click and alter the appearance of what’s already on the screen.
While I agree with Nitesh’s reactions to this program, I believe that there is more that can be looked into the abilities of the human to create forms and where a program like this could lead to. It’s possible that by taking art that’s created through this app, 3D forms can be created whether sculpturally or structurally to create interesting paperweights or installations depending on it’s scale. There’s also practical applications that a program such as this can be used for when taken out of it’s original context whether interpreted literally or abstractly.
Be sure to check out the original post or the program which is linked above.
Out of the many other interesting LookingOutwards assignments, Bo’s one on Artis Engineering creating a turn table that is recreated by coding and robotics was intriguing for me. It was a recreation of antique machine with one of the most advanced digital machine and programs. Since I am interested in such digital fabrication and learning about grasshopper, which is a 3-dimensional modelling program used for this project, it allowed me to learn about what works can be done from such method. The project itself was also interesting to watch how sound can be translated into a visual object in a totally new method that I have never seen before. It was also nice to imagine this to be used to possibly create customized furniture that is created from a music that one enjoys.
For her Looking Outwards-02, Damin wrote about Robo Faber, which is an “autonomous drawing robot.” Like Damin, I found this project to be very interesting. I watched the video that Damin included in her post, and to learn more about the project I read a 2013 article by Filip Visnjic called “Autonomous Drawing Robot by Matthias Dörfelt, Determined to Reproduce.” Robo Faber was designed by Matthias Dörfelt as part of a project called Mechanical Parts. The robot draws random lines and shapes which are known as “connectors” or “mechanical parts.” The robot is programmed by Dörfelt using preset systems that he created for flip books that he made, called Weird Faces and I Follow. Robo Faber then draws random and unique mechanical parts which don’t fit together in any specific way. I agree with Damin, that the randomness of the robot’s creations are part of what inspires/interests me. Echoing Damin, the randomness of it makes it seem more creative, and definitely more unique than a lot of art. Another aspect of the project that I like is how it allows a non-living thing to create on its own. The robot’s creations are not something that can be repeated exactly like most computer programs, rather, they are as unique as if they had been made by a human hand. It is also amusing to watch the robot at work, as it looks almost as if it is thinking about what to draw and making artistic decisions as it goes.
When I was looking through blog posts, I came across one by Ashley Chen that caught my eye, because I had previously written about another project by the same computational artist, Mark Wheeler. It was interesting to see the differences between the two projects, and to get a broader idea of who Wheeler is as an artist.
In “This City,” the project Ashley looked at, Wheeler creates interdependent music and imagery to represent a fantasy world of traffic. The visuals respond to the sounds he creates, and vice versa. As Wheeler puts it, “the soundtrack controls the world” and “the world influences its soundtrack.” In the previous project I had looked at, the sound determined the visuals, but the visuals did not influence the sound, so it’s cool to see this added component.
Ashley remarked on the “human factor” of this project, but I was actually struck by the opposite. This world that Wheeler has created is completely artificial and controlled by computers— the traffic visuals mimic real life, but the “drivers” are not in control— they are at the whim of the music and the computer. About halfway through, gravity seems to stop working, and all the cars fly off, which is a bit apocalyptic. The cars definitely end up doing some “non human” things.