I saw an exciting exhibit at the Akron Art Museum by Jean-Pierre Gauthier. It was composed of motion sensitive pieces created from circuitry and mostly every day objects that generate slightly but endlessly varying sounds and movements. All the works were great but my favorite was the piano that triggered as you moved around it. I liked his chosen notes and the way it was programmed so that it was always different. It didn’t seem like you could trigger the same notes with the same movements. I could imagine accomplishing this in a lot of ways, perhaps he had programmed a long series of notes that are held in a buffer and triggered in sequence so that movement dictates only when something is struck but the note order is predetermined. At any rate, it was great. I snuck some audio with my phone and was inspired to use it as raw material in an ode to Gauthier’s exhibit and the night in general.
I like the idea of taking something extremely organic and making it rigid and repetitive as I did with the piano audio from the museum but on top I added layers of audio that contained several elements of randomness to re-introduce an organic albeit digital element. An Elecktron MachineDrum part was sent random midi controller changes from a Max/MSP patch and I created a couple presets in Audio Damage’s Automaton to mess with some guitar parts. Finally, I threw in a dash of some finger mashed Speak and Math for the fun loving circuit bending duo, Beatrix Jar playing downstairs at the museum that night. A 45 minute exersize in Random vs. Repetition.
I was also heavily influenced by the snowstorm I drove home at 1 mph in.[audio:misc audio/patternbased – gauthier snow storm.mp3]