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Sound Art

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SOU Sound-Art

on 12 June 2013

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Transcript of Sound Art

Sound Art Solar Music Hot House 1988
By Joe Jones This piece was very cool because he uses a solar energy to run several motors to make a variety of sounds. In the hot house both a solar orchestra and hanging solar music instruments are used. Some of the types of instruments used are wind chimes, guitar, drums and bells. The hot house is located amongst pathways and benches so anyone can walk through or around the house. vimeo.com/7695193 Meta Harmonie II
BY Jean Tinguely This is another interesting piece because the scale of this sculpture/musical device. Meta-Harmonie II was built in 1979 and essentially is dozens of wheels and gears that turn and produce "wheezing scales of tones" (Acousmata, 2009, para. 2). Most of Jean's work was there types of sculptures which were originally intended gradually break down and destroy themselves. This piece is stored in a museum in Berlin.
Acousmata. (2009). Jean Tinguely : Meta-HarmonieII. Retrived from acousmata.com/post/168152720/meta-harmonie-ii
Posted by Kevin Jenkins Unknown Piece, Nam June Paik On YouTube, the video is titled "Performance at Anthology," but there is little information offered other than that. At any rate, two performers command the stage for the most part. One of them (perhaps Paik himself?) remains at and around a grand piano for most of the duration of the piece. Often, he seems to be training some sort of camcorder at the keyboard as he plays the instrument. The sounds emerging from the piano are sometimes beautiful, with conventional structure, and sometimes the man is simply mashing keys with a forearm or with the business end of the camera he is supporting, in what I interpreted as a comparatively unorganized fashion. The output from the camera is displayed on a large screen in the background, duplicated and mirrored in multiple directions to create a kaleidoscopic effect. The second main performer, seated to the side of the piano, mimics playing a string instrument as the pianist plays his. From time to time, additional performers or assistants move on and off of the stage, wearing costumes, playing instruments, screaming, etc. For the first few clips in the YouTube video, I wasn't getting much out of the piece, but at first sight of a recognizable, harmonious melody (on the piano) I suddenly felt much more comfortable. This comfort did not dissipate when the sonic dissonance and even visual chaos returned; the bits of conventional melody kept ebbing in and out after it was first introduced, tying the whole piece together in a way. I learned something about the way I interpret music from viewing/listening to this piece. Posted by Trevor Lamberson Alvin Lucier - "I Am Sitting In A Room" This piece demonstrates the concept of resonant frequencies of spaces in an interesting way. Lucier recorded a short segment of plain speech, explaining the purpose of the piece, and what it will do. He then played the recording back through speakers and recorded them in the same space. He would do this over and over, and the piece shows every single layer. By the time it finishes, after 45 minutes, the actual words that Lucier is saying are completely unintelligible, and the resonant frequencies of the room have reenforced themselves so much that they take over everything else. The last half of the piece is very eerie, sounding more like a synthesizer than a voice.

I thought this piece was interesting because unlike a lot of experimental music, "I'm Sitting in a Room" is a true experiment in a scientific sense, with Lucier having a stated goal of seeking to isolate the resonant frequencies of a room. It also works as an artistic statement, with a slowly evolving sound. Each layer is barely different from the next. However, by the time the piece is over it sounds completely different from what it did when it started. Paul Panhuysen - "Ginger Strings" Paul Panhuysen is a dutch sound artist that is known for sound installations made up of long strings, hung up and amplified. Panhuysen rubs his hands along the strings, and the amplification produces a sound similar to a violin, but with lots of dissonance. "Ginger Strings" is one of these installation pieces. It is constructed in a large room with many small pillars. The strings are tied to barrels, and there is a huge web of them. A few of the strings are plucked at specific intervals by robotic picks. Panhuysen walks along the strings very slowly, lightly rubbing them with his palms.

These sound installations are probably the most interesting ones I've seen so far. The sound that the strings make is unique and incredibly layered. The sound has an alien quality that is quite compelling, even if it gets ear piercingly loud and dissonant at times. Cheyenne DeLoach
4/14/13 River Sounding, Bill Fontana (2010) This video contains clips of a multi-room installation by Bill Fontana, in which sounds and video are paired together, all sourced from sites surrounding the Thames (a river in southern England). To walk through the exhibition must have felt like a complete immersion in the reality of the river, maybe a celebration of the river and its significance in everyday life. Screens of various shapes and sizes are placed throughout the exhibit, displaying images of the river itself and its surroundings, accompanied by audio recordings taken both underwater and over the surface. This all brought me back to a completely unrelated album I like—Wander/Wonder, 2011, Balam Acab—which was notable in part for the enormous amount of water-related samples it incorporated into otherwise standard, accessible, almost poppy tracks. The prominent drips, plops, plinks, rushing, and splashing gave the album a very unique and engrossing feel. I suspect it had less to do with the fact that the artist was building the music from unconventional sounds than the fact that he was using “watery” sounds in particular. There's something about visually and aurally appreciating the movement of water that speaks to us on a particularly deep level, I think. Aside from being a tribute to and an exploration of the River Thames, Fontana's piece seemed acceptable as a powerful celebration of water itself. Posted by Trevor Lamberson Max Neuhaus: Zyklus Zyklus, by Max Neuhaus, was written in 1963. The piece consists of many differnt percussion instruments including a marimba, cymbals, and a xylophone to name a few. The piece, which is 13 minutes long, is composed in a very segmented fashion. Max Neuhaus was well known for his percusion and sound instalation pieces. The theme in the piece is randomness with a hint at trying to get a thought processed.

Post By: Joseph Dalcin
Date : April 15, 2013 Bill Fontana: Sonic Cascades Sonic Cascades, by Bill Fontana, is a 4 minute piece of music that plays a classical song from the steeples bells. In a sense, it is humorious or unexpecting as one would expect to hear a basic church melody playing. the piece was written in 2007 and gets performed live at various churches. I'm not sure what the theme of the piece is but it certainly caught me off guard. Maybe it's a spin off of church idealogies or maybe it has nothing to do with the church at all

Post By: Joseph Dalcin
Date: April 15, 2013 Pandemonium
Janet Cardiff/George Bures Miller Installed 2005-2007, Eastern State Penitentiary Museum This work was recorded on site, as an installation work. It is comprised of sonic rendering of materials present on the site. The entire work seems to have the effect of a sonic dialogue.
Cellblock seven was treated as an instrument by Cardiff and Miller, and the recording was controlled by a computer and midi system.
Phenomenology is a key component in the work of Cardiff and Miller. They work with memory and perception, blurring the boundaries between present and memory. Pandemonium highlights the sonic environment and history of the penitentiary, bringing it into a personal level for the audience with a clear sense of narrative and recognizable rhythmic patterns.
I am facinated with the work of Cardiff and Miller, and will explore their work further, as it seems to hold much of what interests me. Andrea Young April 15, 2013 Biyuu
Liz Phillips/Mariko Endo Reynolds Biyuu explores the natural environment. Phillips is interested in capturing the nuances of the systems present in the work. The dancer becomes both a controller and an object of sonic input. Her movements, along with Phillip's, during the performance allow for an organic flow to the work. At the same time, the costume that Reynolds wears is specially fabricated to be an acoustic piece itself, giving further significance to her movements.
The title comes from a Japanese word denoting the sound of motion, such as the wind moving bamboo. Bamboo, wind, and physical motion all play key roles in this work which layers audio, visual components with live performance.
The beauty of the multiple layers present in this work are very compelling to me. This is a work that I want to go back to time and again, as I am sure that each time I will learn something new- not only about the work, but about myself. Andrea Young April 15, 2013 Paul Panhuysen & The Galvanos - Coming Panhuysen is a Dutch composer, visual and sound artist, his works functioned as art space that functioned as sound installations, sound sculptures, concerts focused around free improvisation, electronic music, and experimental music. This work "Coming" is part of his collection "Lost for Words," Panhuysen used a unusual method to to capture the recordings. He attached metal springs to galvanometers which vibrated more readily at some frequencies more than others. "Coming"is Panhuysen's perspective of a woman in a car near a highway and with traffic passing by and her words being drowned away. The almost continuous low metallic sounds create an uneasiness, but never truly build to a climic moment. The work sound more of machine nature than that of a highway, but maybe thats what Panhuysen was going for. By Steve Sagert Nature of the Night Sky, Jeff Talman The sounds heard in this sound art piece are sound waves generated/converted from radiation and seismic waves from a distance star called Crosion. The concert takes place in a Bavarian forest and the music is played at sundown each night. Talman worked with Daniel Huber, astrophysicist, to collect the data. The wavelengths are so long that the human ear could never hear them, so together the two worked to convert them to a higher frequency so that humans could hear them. They are eery and sound very much like something you would think the "universe" might sound like. The sound installation is slightly hidden to make the viewing experience feel more mysterious and secret. The view in the space directs your eye to the night sky. The music file is 15 minutes long, and by the end of the piece, the sky is filled with stars. The reaction from the viewers of the first few showings were very hypnotic. They did not get up or clap, they just sat there transfixed and transported to the stars for about 5 minutes, contemplating the stars, the sounds, and the vast space that they live. I personally am very intrigued by this idea. I have learned about how space, stars, the auroral lights, etc. actually produce sounds previously in physics classes so when I saw this post I immediately gravitated towards it. I would love to experience this live. In an NPR interview where Talman describes this work he uses the word transported to describe the viewing experience and in that sense his word is very relevant to my work in my capstone project, and I am definitely excited about this piece, and glad I stumbled upon it for this class.
-Tiara Lavitt

http://www.npr.org/2011/08/13/139600689/sounds-of-stars-fall-in-a-bavarian-forest Silent Music by Robin Minard This piece consists of hundreds of small piezo loudspeakers arranged in different venues on a wall in an organic plant-like formation. High soft tones are played through the speakers. From the sources I found on this piece, I was unsure as to why it was called "Silent Music" because there is audible sound, and where or what exactly the sounds originated from. One site (http://soundart.zkm.de/en/silent-music-1994-robin-minard/) said they were from "natural and synthetic sources" which is incredibly vague. I can't speak much to the premise behind the idea of the work, but visually and aesthetically I think the work is strong, and I also heard a small portion of the sounds it created and I think those were interesting as well. This piece to me seems to be about or similar to John Cage's idea of never being able to escape music; that it is everywhere and there are musical sounds within the silence. I would expect that maybe in this case the sounds came from ambient backgrounds, maybe from scenic landscapes or something of the sort.
-Tiara Lavitt Paul Panhuysen and The Galvanos - Clock The piece is a sound on sound recording of a grandmother's clock made in 1695. Panhuysen
would attach galvanometers to metal strings so when a pitch hit at a certain frequency the metal strings would vibrate. These noises were then re- amplified and can be heard through out the clocks piece. Clocks was composed in 1981 as was apart of his "Paul Panhuysen and the Galvanos: Lost for Words" album. The song lasts for over 6 minutes repeated the same sounds over and over.

I found the piece very interesting especially in the way it was constructed using galvanometers. I also liked the vibrations that were amplified over the clock, it made the tick of the clock sound distorted. I like the deeper symbolism and meaning that could be represented behind the idea of an eerie sound of a clock ticking, even if Panhuysen did not intend for it. By Lindsey Blodgett Bill Fontana: River Sounding By Lindsey Blodgett The piece is a copulation of various locations all with
the element of water or river sounds, as well as whatever background noise was there. The maker of the video also inserted several clips of an interview with Fontana between the different locations. Fontana talks about the process of recording each segment, or clip at a different location. Some of the places he recorded was the Kew Bridge steam pulp where the of machinery is accompanied with water. Water can be heard swirling about at Teddington Lock Weir. There is also a whistle boey from a location that gives off a nice humming noise accompanied with the water.

I really enjoyed this video, and found it aspiring as it goes along with the idea for my project. I loved the water noises that were captured in the piece, with the water violently swirling about as well as the sound of still water. Having not been to any of the places on the video, it was a good sample of what those places would sound like. I thought the interviews inserted between the locations could have been done better, asking more pertinent questions about the experience of recording at these locations. Jean Tinguely Sound Artist Jean Tinguely (22 May 1925 in Fribourg, Switzerland – 30 August 1991 in Bern) was a Swiss painter and sculptor. He is best known for his sculptural machines or kinetic art, in the Dada tradition; known officially as metamechanics. Tinguely's art satirized the mindless overproduction of material goods in advanced industrial society.

The machine sculptures engage in a loud and multi-coloured conversation with the onlooker: Through his works, Jean Tinguely communicates and interacts with the spectator. The machine functions and becomes art. Tinguely’s artworks sparkle with wit, vitality, irony and poetry. Seen against a deeper background, though, they also reveal a feeling for tragicomedy, for the enigmatic and inscrutable.
Personal Note - I love the way he satirizes the over-production and silly machines that don't really make life easier for humanity but rather seem to unnecessarily complicate things. post by: Eddy McManus
date: 04/22/13 Alvin Lucier Sound Artist "Music For Solo Performer" (1965) Alvin Lucier (born May 14, 1931) is an American composer of experimental music and sound installations that explore acoustic phenomena and auditory perception.
A long-time music professor at Wesleyan University, Lucier was a member of the influential Sonic Arts Union, which included Robert Ashley, David Behrman, and Gordon Mumma.
Much of his work is influenced by science and explores the physical properties of sound itself: resonance of spaces, phase interference between closely tuned pitches, and the transmission of sound through physical media.

Though Lucier had composed chamber and orchestral works since 1952, the composer and his critics count his 1965 composition Music for Solo Performer as the proper beginning of his compositional career. In that piece, EEG electrodes attached to the performer’s scalp detect bursts of alpha waves generated when the performer achieves a meditative, non-visual brain state. These alpha waves are amplified and the resulting electrical signal is used to vibrate percussion instruments distributed around the performance space.

I originally chose Lucier because we share the same birthday. Then I listened to this piece in its entirety and was amazed that the brain's activity could generate sound post by: Eddy McManus
date: 04/22/13
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