December Exhibition

“To present the musical soul of the masses, of the great factories, of the railways, of the transatlantic liners, of the battleships, of the automobiles and aeroplanes. To add to the great central themes of the musical poem the domain of the machines and the victorious kingdom of Electricity.”
“I unfurl to the freedom of air and sun the red flag of Futurism, calling to its flaming symbol such young composers as have hearts to love and fight, minds to conceive, and brows free of cowardice.”
A few years ago I became enamoured with the audio environment around me. Through my photoblog at that time I had already been noticing and sharing small bits of visual artifacts but noticing interesting signals through all the noise that is present here was something new. When you take the time to listen you may find yourself surprised at the remarkabley diverse array of delightful noise. Your cityscape transforms itself into futuristic noise orchestra that constantly changes, a never ending performance, which in turn completely changes you and your relationship with your city.
And I started to record and think of ways to share what I heard. I decided I wanted to be a sound artist.
A year and a half ago I finished a body of work, well mostly just prototypes and concepts given form, of sound art and tangible UI/interactive art. It was a tremendous learning experience – an education in product development rolled up in less than a year. We exhibited in an entirely appropriate old railway house to some acclaim. Since then I have been lucky to show various pieces at other venues throughout Taiwan. But until now I haven’t had the oportunity to focus entirely on sound art.
This December I will exhibit my traffic series of installations in Puli Taiwan. I wanted to show more, including my ambient room, but budgets would not allow. I’m looking forward to it as a source of inspiration and a break from the doldrums of freelancing.
All the pieces are reltively similar but with different execution. Here are brief descriptions of the pieces:
Traffic 1
“Now we are satiated and we find far more enjoyment in the combination of the noises of trams, backfiring motors, carriages and bawling crowd.
To excite and exalt our sensibilities, music developed towards the most complex polyphony and the maximum variety, seeking the most complicated successions of dissonant chords and vaguely preparing the creation of musical noise.” -The Art of Noises- Luigi Russolo
Traffic 1 is a series of sound vignettes played through custom built enclosures. It communcates through sound various emotions felt during the daily commute through Hsinchu’s streets. Using the simplest tools possible I set out to recreate the sounds I hear when driving in traffic in Hsinchu.
Traffic 2
Traffic 2 attempts to create spontaneous real time auditory compositions or improvisations using data gained from network traffic. A secondary aim is to test our understanding of the usage of network data in the public and private sphere.
We treat the network as an unseen life form – a body in constant change – born from the usage patterns of the users of the system. By using network traffic as a tool for creating music we in effect illustrate this unseen form.
Unlike traditional musical performances, Traffic 2 does not exist over a set period of time. It is in effect never ending and never the same at any given point in time.
Traffic 3
Over a period of time we gathered sound samples from various locations throughout the city of Hsinchu. We edited these samples and tuned them to a specific harmonic structure. We then fed these sounds, over a 100 in total, into our software agent which communicates with our server. The result is a cacophony of sound which could be understood as the city of Hsinchu acting as a Futurist Noise orchestra driven by network traffic.


Artifacts as Urban Art

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Many of my friends think it’s funny when I proclaim that the ad. stickers, posters, and notices I see plastered over the walls in Taiwan, Bangkok, and Hong Kong are a form of ‘urban art’. I love the random nature of the paper and characters and how over time the elements transform this form into something entirely new. It changes just like the environment around it.
I have an sound art installation whereby we tried to recreate what I saw (and heard) on the street. Though I spent a great deal of time culling the city for bits and pieces of what is seen in these photos here, it was never ‘ugly’ enough. It was too planned and had too much attention to detail. But it was one of my most popular installations.
This is a cross-post from my new web blog on Vox. Just what I need another web blog! I consider Vox to be a more restrained and slightly more mature MySpace.
More images like above can be found by browsing the archives on 35togo.


台灣土製小劇場歌舞伎

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I love the English translation from their site detailing their new theatre company:

Two young Taiwanese poets decided to launch The Theater company of Lee Qing Zhao the Private in January 2006, while Liu traveled alone in Tokyo and Yuguo in Cambodia. In the name of Lee Qing Zhao(1084-?), a great female poet in classical Chinese literature history, they persuaded a grotesque manner which in sum, in the name of Lee Qing Zhao are “all achieved”, “her one as wholeness” and nothing left but water and more,
It is a far predicted combination for such artistic team, which grounded in poet’s sensitivity, in designer’s sentimentality, in performer’s delicacy; images, attitudes, tastes they aimed to pushed to the extreme. Issues are bored, manners are mean while they steal time and attention. In the name of Lee Qing Zhao, they frisson on the core weakness of the Chinese classics graveyard.
It is far beyond a theater company, but a revolution of nymphomaniac, melancholian. It marks, “Awake Failure! Awake Despair! Present the world your own privacy, with delightful graceful pretentious confidence, even that you are quite aware, aware of doom. Excited for me, ejaculate it, widows, trollops, idiots please feel no sorrow for me.

Lee Qing Zhao


The Non-Nude One

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This is one of a series of “nudes” that were submitted for inclusion in a local magazine I am helping to bring to launch. While it won’t be used I do like the change in perspective this sketch provides.


Interface and Society Conference

UPCOMING.
Deadline call for works: 1st of July 2006 – see call
Public Private Interface workshop: 10th to 13th of June.
Mobile troops workshop: 13th to 16th of September
Conference: 10th and 11th of November 2006
Exhibition opening and performance: 10th of November.
In our everyday life we constantly have to cope more or less successfully
with interfaces. We use the mobile phone, the mp3 player, and our laptop,
in order to gain access to the digital part of our life. In recent years
this situation has lead to the creation of new interdisciplinary subjects
like “Interaction Design” or “Physical Computing”.
We live between two worlds, our physical environment and the digital
space. Technology and its digital space are our second nature and the
interfaces are our points of access to this technosphere.
Since artists started working with technology they have been developing
interfaces and modes of interaction. The interface itself became an
artistic thematic.
The project INTERFACE and SOCIETY investigates how artists deal with
the transformation of our everyday life through technical interfaces.
With the rapid technological development a thoroughly critique of the
interface towards society is necessary.
The role of the artist is thereby crucial. S/he has the freedom to
deal with technologies and interfaces beyond functionality and usability.
The project INTERFACE and SOCIETY is looking at this development
with a special focus on the artistic contribution.
INTERFACE and SOCIETY is an umbrella for a range of activities
throughout 2006 at Ateleir Nord in Oslo.


Jonathan Taylor Photography

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Jonathan Taylor is an English photographer who has been based in Bangkok since the early 90’s. I have been wanting to share his work since I came across it on flickr a week ago.
“Well known for his gritty, black-and-white images of cops, hit men, drug addicts and crime scenes, eyevine photographer Jonathan Taylor has traveled all over Asia to report on everything from Agent Orange victims in Vietnam to a special police unit in Bangkok that helps pregnant women, stuck in traffic, give birth.”
His work is very powerful and illustrates the lives of people we might never see in Asia. His series on the effects of Agent Orange should forever change your mind about the validity of political wars.
His photos on Flickr
The Agent Orange series
The Jonathan Taylor Website


Aesthetic Issues of sound art.

“A sound artist, then, is an artist whose materials include physical media, sound, and environments. A sound artist creates all of these, not taking any of them for granted. To a sound artist, the gallery in which her work is shown is part of her subject; the instrument used to create the sounds heard in a concert hall is her subject-including its sound, including its appearance, and including the actions required to make the instrument sound. Sound artists tend to be poorly represented by the modes of discourse that seem satisfactory for “pure” musical or visual art; they are poorly represented by the forms of presentation available (i.e. concert halls and galleries). ”
Read the rest