In “Speaking Drawing,” a series of watercolor paper cards and 2"x3" art boards are placed in a large loudspeaker lying on its back on the floor. A very low, slowly changing tone is played through the speaker, causing the objects to bounce and shimmy around inside. I then drip India ink on the papers and blocks and attempt to draw on them as they quiver uncontrollably.
I just discovered violinist/composer Mari Kimura and her work on subharmonics.
These subharmonic sounds that she creates are absolutely fascinating. Apparently she uses a combination of exact bow pressure, placement, and speed to draw out notes that are lower than the open G string (classically, open G is the lowest note available on the violin). She is able to control this technique, extending the violin's range up to a full octave below open G without modifying the tuning of her instrument.
She talks more about subharmonics and the technique here. She also talks more about her work on her blog here.
Un vinyle sur lequel n’est enregistré que du silence souffre de la lecture inflige?e par des bras de lecture robotisés. Ils viennent en détruire les sillons et créent ainsi la composition de la pièce. Cette dernière se cre?e en fonction du temps d’activation et des conditions exterieures. Le vinyle devient donc archive d’une monstration. La mémoire de sa propre création. La piéce sonore est achevée à la désactivation du dispositif.
I also liked his Black Rainbow explosion project for Edinburgh
I found the shape and color of each explosion matched the sounds perfectly. The rapidity and precision of the explosions and their placement in the sky was just stunning, resulting in a very pwerful experience. I would have loved to see this performance in person.
French artist Céleste Boursier-Mougenot creates works by drawing on the rhythms of daily life to produce sound in unexpected ways.For his installation in The Curve, Boursier-Mougenot creates a walk-though aviary for a flock of zebra finches, furnished with electric guitars and other musical instruments. As the birds go about their routine activities, perching on or feeding from the various pieces of equipment, they create a captivating, live soundscape.
27 February 2010 - 23 May 2010 The Curve, Barbican, London
I really like the idea of this random soundscape created by the daily activities of the birds, the artist's placement of the guitars, and the birds' reactions to visitors walking through the installation.
One of the works that particularly stuck me was a series of videos by Steina and Woody Vasulka, a couple who were technical pioneers in video art. Their main focus was the use of video as a means of exploring fundamental structures of sound and image production while maximizing the medium's aesthetic potential.
As described in the exhibition booklet, these Studies (1970-1971) are abstract videos resulting from an artistic approach that views the electronic signal itself as both the material and the medium. In doing so, special attention is paid to the interrelation and/or coupling of various levels of video and sound, whose transmission relies on the same technology. Specially developed synthesizers were used to manipulate - independantly and combined - both sound and video.
I really liked the study Descends, because the beautiful abstract forms remind me a lot of some of the graphic shapes I see synesthetically with music -- but the sound associated with this video has quite a different shape, ironically!
Julien Lassort and Matthieu Burlot, a Parisian creative team better known as Jul&Mat, created this spectacular (unofficial) video for Metronomy's "On the motorway."
The idea is simple and so effective, and the different graphics really bring out the melodies and rhythmns layered throughout the song. I really love the way they were able to show timbral textures through different colors, each in a different style. Absolutely stunning!
I recently discovered Eva Schindling's fascinating work in sculpture, where she explores the physical shape that spoken words can take. Her work was featured in Etapes:176, the January 2010 issue, which focuses on information design.
Liquid Sound Collision is an aesthetic and interpretive study of the interactions that happen when recorded voices encounter computer-simulated fluids. In a digital environment, audio input can have a more obvious impact on the shape and distortion of liquids than in reality.
Each study sends two words that can be thought of as poetic opposites -
chaos and order, body and mind – as vibration source into a fluid
simulation. The waves created by the sound files run towards each other,
they collide and interfere with one another’s patterns. The moments of
these collisions are then translated into 3D models that are printed as
The chosen words that depict dualistic world views are opposites, yet
are displayed as the turbulent flow that arises between the two
I really like the way that Eva has used scientific technology - sending sound waves into a fluid simulation - to create flowing forms that are delicate and elegant.