Cathode Rock: Kyle Evans Makes a TV Into an Oscilloscopic Axe of an Instrument

Pick up that TV and rock it, baby. While recalling a now-obsolete technology and the work of artists like Nam June Paik, de/Rastra is something of a (delightful) lie. In the form of a television, it appears to be a self-contained, vintage instrument. In reality, it’s a simulation, a CRT with “altered anatomy” that uses a computer to drive faux vintage cathode ray visualizations and to produce digital sound. But the synthesis of visuals with the body of a television is wonderful, a play on past and present technology that produces an impossible electronic now. The new soul of this …

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If Movies Didn't Play Forward: Toni Dove, R. Luke Dubois Make Gestural Live Cinema

What if film, rather than being projected from start to finish and proceeding in a straight line, could be reconstructed and performed? Every live visual performance involving video has more or less asked that question. But not every performance tries to convey a narrative in the process. Toni Dove’s Spectropia, coming this weekend to the storied Mixology Festival at New York City’s Roulette, does just that, interweaving a sci-fi storyline across imagined future and past through gesture-controlled, computer-vision activated remix. Just one friendly piece of advice: if you start thinking and feeling the way these main characters do, maybe it …

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If Movies Didn’t Play Forward: Toni Dove, R. Luke Dubois Make Gestural Live Cinema

What if film, rather than being projected from start to finish and proceeding in a straight line, could be reconstructed and performed? Every live visual performance involving video has more or less asked that question. But not every performance tries to convey a narrative in the process. Toni Dove’s Spectropia, coming this weekend to the storied Mixology Festival at New York City’s Roulette, does just that, interweaving a sci-fi storyline across imagined future and past through gesture-controlled, computer-vision activated remix. Just one friendly piece of advice: if you start thinking and feeling the way these main characters do, maybe it …

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Live Set of the Week: Generative Set, telematique + u-matic + Sascha Funke, Audionite [Jitter, Syphon]

On a tremendous three-screen rig at Nantes, France’s new Stereolux venue, Berlin-based u-matic and telematique show off their latest custom Jitter rig. By networking their machines, they’re able to collaborate; Syphon lets them separate the generative tools from the mixer (an increasingly-nice solution on the Mac). The results are geometric and abstract, fitting the Berlin-themed music on this showcase. (I played this venue as part of the Pure Data venue the day before – it’s a really terrific new spot, and it’s great to see some activity in France outside of Paris! Now, let’s see what some of the French …

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Mapping AV to Architecture, a Touchscreen Project Puts Participants in Control in Chicago [Video]

Mapping projections to architecture, and connecting music to visual metaphors are nothing new. But many of these projects leave the control to performers; audience members simply stand back and watch. In a project for HP promoting their TouchSmart PCs, interactive artists ceded that control to participants. Instead of the computers being in the hands of the performers, they’re touchable by anyone, for an open, collaborative experience of the work. The project makes use of a number of ingredients. The HP TouchSmart PC provides a big, touchable display, much larger (though less mobile) than a tablet like the iPad. On the …

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noisyjelly

Noisy Jelly: Gelatin Achieves Powers of Sound (And Make Your Own)

What if your musical instrument were gelatinous? Edible? “Noisy Jelly” is the latest project to imagine that scenario. Thanks to the capacitive quality of gelatin (known to us Americans by the brand name JELL-O and to some simply as “jelly”), you can mix up a set of colored instruments that jiggle when you touch them. Powered by the open hardware platform Arduino to read sensors and Max/MSP to produce sound, it’s the work of a couple of Paris-based students, RaphaĆ«l and Marianne Cauvard. Check out the terrific video featuring wide-eyed children, and specs below. What makes this more delightful is …

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kinectarui

From Beautiful Ambient Modern Dance to Dubstep, Gestures to Music in Kinect (Download the Tool)

It started as some compelling demos or proof of concept, but it’s plenty real now: the tools for translating movement, gesture, and dance from the body to interactive music march forward. Empowered by Microsoft’s Kinect and an artist-friendly toolchain, even a single, clever developer can do a lot. Sound designer, music producer, and Max/MSP developer Chris Vik of Melbourne has been one of those busy early pioneers, with an incredible tool called Kinectar. So, the tech is cool and shiny and impressive: what about the actual music? And, even more importantly, what if all the hand waving and moving about …

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repatchershield

rePatcher: Make Your Computer a Real Modular, with Knobs and Cords; Pd and Max Right Now

For the last few decades, generally speaking, we’ve had computers, and we’ve had physical, modular, analog gear. Computers are endlessly patchable, but not using physical cords. Modulars use physical cords, but they lack the flexibility (and affordability) of a computer. Now, US$25 and an Arduino can change that. rePatcher is a simple, tangible modular interface for computers. It could work with any software, but right out of the gate it already works with two popular (virtual) patching environments, Max/MSP and the free and open source Pure Data (Pd). You use physical patch cords to make connections, and those connections are …

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Across the Universe: Mind-Blowing AV Performance Makes Music a Spacey Trip

Turning music and sound into three-dimensional worlds often yields something that fields like a trip through space. But this feels like a real trip. Through pulsing, glowing starfields, “Versum”‘s audiovisual movements are brain-bendingly transformative. Artist Tarik Barri has created an integrated world of sound and image that makes the interface and the compositional realms seamless. It seems as though this really is a musical universe, through whose harmonies of the spheres you can fly like. Boldly going, indeed. Ingredients: Max/MSP/Jitter, Processing, Java, SuperCollider, GLSL [the 3D shading language], and … some serious skill and time, I imagine. The work has …

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With Just One Contact Mic, Any Surface Magically Becomes a Gestural Instrument

Look around the room you’re in. Drum your fingers against some of the objects around you. Now imagine that you could turn those touches into any imaginable sound – and all you’d need to play them is a single contact mic. And we’re not talking just simplistic sounds – think expressive, responsive transformation of the world around you, all with just that one mic, thanks to clever gestural recognition. Bruno Zamborlin has made that idea a reality, with hold-onto-your-chair results. It’s not available yet for public consumption, but it’s coming. Bruno explains to CDM:

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