In September I relocated to Glasgow, and I’m excited to have the opportunity to exhibit Post-Truth and Beauty here. The audio-luminescent installation of shifting worlds and fragmented perspectives will exhibit at the Centre for Contemporary Arts (CCA) as part of Sonica festival.
Dates: 31 Oct – 10 Nov
Times: 11am – 6pm
I’ll also be joining fellow exhibitor Navid Navab on a panel talk Science as Art, chaired by Colm McAuliffe, Sunday 3 Nov at 1pm.
This work I originally created with Aphra Shemza in 2017, in the aftermath of the Brexit and Trump votes. Here’s a bit more about it:
Twelve glowing rods intersect between walls, floor and ceiling, as if they were exposed elements from a much larger structure. In front, there is a ring of speakers into which a visitor is invited.
Once inside, the visitor is immersed in a soundscape of slowly evolving textural sounds. The installation tracks the location of the visitor’s head. It combines this with the 3D speaker ring to create the illusion that each sound is floating in a fixed position. This creates a seamlessly accessible interaction, drawing on our natural ability to spatially locate sound.
Each sound is paired with a colour palette, which takes over the LEDs in the rods as the sound is approached, flickering in time with the sound’s oscillations. Light and sound combine to create the sense of a reactive, living entity.
Sound is transformed from a temporal medium into a sculpture – uncovered with the active agency of a mobile observer. Together the sounds construct a rich harmony but only partial combinations can be heard at once.
The work invites viewers to consider perspectives other than their own, as they move through a space in which visual and musical elements are fragmented. Only by considering the work from many angles can a broader sense of the whole emerge. With debate online and in real life becoming ever more polarised, Post Truth and Beauty aims to remind us of the dangers of retreating into silos and disregarding other points of view.
If you are in town or visiting then drop me a message. I’ll be around for the festival apart from 4-7 Nov when I’ll be in London. There, I’m taking part in the QuestLab residency on creative technology and choreography at Studio Wayne McGregor. Watch this spot for updates.
I have exciting news today, which is that Cave of Sounds has received a nomination for the 2019 STARTS Prize.
Also – new video material of Cave of Sounds at Athens Science Festival, Post-Truth and Beauty at We Are Robots Festival and a new audio-visual performance commissioned by UNESCO.
There seems at first something a bit pathetic about spending your time rehearsing conversations you might have with people. And yet, I recently observed that this seems to be how my thinking process operates. My internal monologue, the inner voice of the mind, is near exclusively in the form of an imaginary conversation with somebody. I have a hunch that this might be quite common. After all, it took me a while to admit this to myself, let alone broach the subject with others.
It gets worse though. At that time I was often listening to the Tim Ferriss podcast, and I observed that a fair few of these imaginary conversations were with him, as if I were a guest on the podcast. How embarrassing – whiling away the hours fantasising about being on a geeky self-development podcast. Why him?
I began trying to observe who my internal interlocutors were, these select few individuals that I’ve unconsciously chosen to imagine listening to my internal monologue. In doing so, I became aware of the impact they were having on me. This was not obvious to me. After all, while my imaginary interlocutor listens to my ramblings carefully and tirelessly, they rarely seem to have anything to say themselves (hence ‘monologue’), so much so that it took me a while to realise that there was anyone listening at all. But the effects of whom I choose to speak with are more subtle. They are fundamental to how I think, how I select which ideas will be attended to among the sea of possibilities.
Hello! I’m excited to announce that the new production of Cave of Sounds will have its first UK exhibition this September at Watermans Arts Centre.
Cave of Sounds began in 2012 at Music Hackspace as an experimental process exploring the idea of ensemble within the music hacker community. Eight artists (myself included) each created a new musical instrument embodying our own personality and practice, while simultaneously responding to what others in the group were creating. These instruments are presented without players with visitors invited to explore and play.
Following a few years of touring, this year we completed a new version of the work, re-engineered and with a bespoke set, which many of you saw in the private preview in January. We debuted at Athens Science Festival in April to over 11,000 visitors including adults, students and children. Here, the work was also featured on daytime TV to over two million viewers.
The new Cave of Sounds will be making its debut at Athens Science Festival on 25-29 April, with support from the British Council. Also, see below for details of the upcoming Flux event on New Social Sculpture at which I’ll be talking.
Cave of Sounds @ Athens Science Festival
Thanks to support from the British Council, we’ll be launching the new production of Cave of Sounds at Athens Science Festival. We’re exhibiting in the former gas factory of Technopolis in central Athens on 25-29 April.
This is its first public outing – thanks to everyone who came to the previews in January. We’ve made a few final tweaks based on your experiences.
Come and jam with us on the eight piece ensemble if you happen to be in that neck of the woods, and tell all your Greek friends. Panagiotis Tigas, the Cave of Sounds artist who created Sonicsphere, is Greek himself and is busy translating our plinth instructions into Greek as part of our preparations.
FLUX Event: New Social Sculpture, Wed 2 May
FLUX is a media arts platform who run regular events in London to hear artists talk about their work. The next one, curated by Aphra Shemza, my collaborator on Post-Truth and Beauty (above), is about New Social Sculpture. It will explore how artists can have a social impact and challenge how people see the world.
Post-Truth and Beauty is an interactive experience exploring the blurring boundary between perspective and truth. Created in collaboration with Aphra Shemza, the luminescent sonic sculpture is ever shifting as the viewer’s head moves to different vantage points.
It returns in its next incarnation at We Are Robots Festival in Old Truman Brewery on Brick Lane in London. The festival explores the future of music and is open to the public for free over the weekend of 4-5 November. It also features work by my talented friend Yuri Suzuki and workshops from Music Hackspace and Hackoustic.
Back in 2012 I led a group of eight musical hackers at The Music Hackspace to reimagine the relationship between performer and audience in music. The outcome was The Cave of Sounds, an installation of eight unique musical instruments that use technology to create a widely accessible experience of collectively making music. See this video for a brief refresher. Following its debut at The Barbican in 2013, the work travelled to Canada and Italy. It was awarded the 2014 Sonic Arts Prize and it remains one of my most popular works.
So I’m excited to announce that Arts Council England have awarded funding to rejuvenate and re-engineer the work. The Cave of Sounds (Mk ii) will be revealed at Salisbury Museum where it will be exhibited 27 Jan – 12 May 2018.
We will also be doing an invitation-only private view in London later this year. Follow @CaveOfSounds on Twitter for updates and watch this space for your invitation.
After the exhibition at Salisbury Museum, we’re planning a UK and international tour of the work. If you’re interested in talking more about this please get in touch.