monochord Performance-Installation

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Music on a Short Thin Wire (2014)

Monochord performance-installation at Gallery 1412 in Seattle,WA in April 2014.  The monochord was set to autotune – cycle through motor values and pitch values.  When resonance frequencies were detected, the monochord held this for a specified duration of time.  Artificial synths were introduced at this point- the frequencies determined in real time, inducing beating patterns that intersected with the resonant frequencies of the wire.   With its proximity to the speakers, the contact mic also began to feedback, providing complex swells and interference patterns that were sonically interesting and palpable as a “playing of the space”.  The emphasis for this performance was on juxtaposing the tones of the monochord with the computer-generated purity of sine tone, allowing these to interfere with each other organically, and gradually introducing complexity in the number, and density of the frequencies introduced.  This pays homage to Alvin Lucier’s strategy of merging/placing in acoustic conflict analog and digital instrumentation in his “Still and Moving Lines of Silence in Families of Hyperbolas”, as well as the nature of the wire as the source and sink of sound in “Music on a Long Thin Wire”, and as added site-specificity, allowing environmental flux to affect the intricacies of the wire’s physicality – for instance, the tuning of the system and the wire’s sympathetic response to the electromagnetic frequencies.     As part of a larger research project on the aesthetics of alignment and resonance, Music on a Short Thin Wire focuses on activating the space, as well as on live coding as an improvisational tool.

 

Sound clip :

 

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