Networked_Music_Review

Shawn Decker

smallmigration.jpgStanding in Shawn Decker’s sound installation A small migration is like being inside an exploded piano, or more precisely it is like standing inside the moment of explosion. The component parts of the work are suspended around me as though frozen in time. Still, yet full of potential movement; they generate a physical sense of imminence. At either end of the gallery large wooden frames support scaffolding bars rigged by chains from the ceiling. Piano wires are stretched across the gallery between the frames. At one end small striker motors are positioned alongside each wire; the installation responds to a series of computer-generated algorithms which trigger the motors that strike the wires.” – From A deep vibration: A small migration by Lizzie Muller

Shawn Decker’s Artist Statement: Initially educated as a composer of both instrumental and computer-generated music, my work has gradually evolved from primarily performance and tape-based music composition to installations intended for galleries or other spaces, as well as to interactive performance works which make use of a variety of electronic media. My current work, which involves a variety of physical and electronic media, is positioned at the intersection of music composition, the visual arts, and performance.

In my most recent work, I have become increasingly interested in the processes found in nature and in other large and complex systems, and the potential of computer programs to model or simulate such systems within time-based artworks. I have also been quite interested in creating media installations which are physical and tactile in nature, which are grounded in objects and in the creation of environments which are integrated within the gallery spaces they are presented in, and which create immersive situations which echo those found in the real world.

Within my most recent interactive installations and performances, patterns of behavior are fixed and defined only by the algorithmic process specified within the computer program embedded within a micro-controller which is typically part of each work. These algorithmic processes are designed to simulate the manner of operation of physical and natural systems. This ongoing investigation of computer-mediated processes – both as a means of producing work, and more recently as the form of the work itself – has been central to my interest in the use of computers for creative purposes.

I have also recently become increasing dissatisfied with the electronic production of sound via conventional speakers (stereophony) and have been investigating the use of mechanical and other “direct” sound production techniques that may be controlled by a computer program,. These techniques include the use of small motors to strike metal objects, piano wires, etc. and are often kinetic in nature. Due to the physical nature of these works the distinctions between sonic, visual, and spatial elements begin to blur. Another related approach I am taking is the investigation of the use of speakers in a more “raw” mode than usually used in stereophony – as single sound sources that may be summed together in sufficient quantities to form spatially immersive environments.

The use of simple mechanical devices such as surplus motors, inexpensive piezoelectric speakers, etc. also certainly has a modestly subversive anti-high-tech element to it that pervades my entire aesthetic. Rather than being interested in creating complex “high tech” systems (for instance, complex robotic systems) I instead focus on the complexity of interactions between many simple, even common, machines. In other words, I am interested in building robotic systems in an environmental /sociological manner.

Shawn Decker is a composer and artist who writes music for live performance, electronic tape, and for film and video soundtracks, and works primarily with interactive computer-based performance and with sound and electronic media installations. His work has appeared in a variety of settings ranging from small galleries to large concert halls, and has been heard on NPR, the European Broadcast System, PBS, and the Learning Channel. Recent commissions include the first permanent public sound installation ever installed in Finland, a piece for the Chicago Saxophone Quartet which has been widely performed in the US and Europe, and an interactive live-electronic score for a major work by the Mordine and Company dance ensemble. Mr. Decker also has performed with and composed for the acclaimed new music ensemble KAPTURE. In addition to writing and producing music, Mr. Decker is an Associate Professor in the Art and Technology and Sound departments at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. In addition to his creative work, Mr. Decker also writes and lectures, and was recently the chair of the 1997 International Symposium on the Electronic Arts. Mr. Decker received a Bachelor’s degree in music composition from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, and Master’s and Doctor’s degrees from the Northwestern University School of Music.


Dec 4, 2007
Trackback URL

Leave a comment

Interviews

Current interview:
Robin Meier, Ali Momeni and the sound of insects

Previous Interviews:

Tags


livestage music sound performance calls + opps installation audio/visual radio festival instrument networked audio interactive experimental electronic workshop video participatory writings event mobile exhibition concert live collaboration electroacoustic environment nature reblog distributed soundscape field recording net_music_weekly improvisation software history locative media space public noise recording immersion voice acoustic sonification lecture generative conference body tool sound sculpture net art art + science VJ/DJ light diy remix site-specific perception mapping film visualization listening laptop algorithmic multimedia city urban data wearable architecture open source game virtual biotechnology sound walk spatialization webcast hacktivism robotic image score platform electromagnetic new media cinema ecology found news composer telematic interface streaming residency interviews/other sensor dance circuit bending synesthesia physical political notation intervention object controller broadcasts conversation narrative second life responsive mashup place technology ambient social network symposium motion tracking hybrid intermedia augmented spoken word livecoding text phonography auralization acousmatic upgrade! gesture opera aesthetics mixed reality resource theory processing 8bit orchestra nmr_commission wireless device toy wireless network theater web 2.0 presentation community surveillance p2p 3D copyright soundtrack research podcast sample feedback psychogeography social chance interdisciplinary tactile recycle interview language systems code emergence presence cassette privacy free/libre software media play chiptune newsletter place-specific archives avatar education haptics activist surround sound audio tour glitch hardware tactical identity bioart asynchronous business tv tangible composition animation jazz transmission arts apps tag e-literature collective microsound relational synchronous Artificial Intelligence conductor convergence reuse simulation ubiquitous synthesizers im/material
3D 8bit acousmatic acoustic activist aesthetics algorithmic ambient animation apps architecture archives art + science Artificial Intelligence asynchronous audio audio/visual audio tour augmented auralization avatar bioart biotechnology body broadcasts business calls + opps cassette chance chiptune cinema circuit bending city code collaboration collective community composer composition concert conductor conference controller convergence conversation copyright dance data distributed diy e-literature ecology education electroacoustic electromagnetic electronic emergence environment event exhibition experimental feedback festival field recording film found free/libre software game generative gesture glitch hacktivism haptics hardware history hybrid identity im/material image immersion improvisation installation instrument interactive interdisciplinary interface intermedia intervention interview interviews/other jazz language laptop lecture light listening live livecoding livestage locative media mapping mashup media microsound mixed reality mobile motion tracking multimedia music narrative nature net art networked net_music_weekly new media news newsletter nmr_commission noise notation object open source opera orchestra p2p participatory perception performance phonography physical place place-specific platform play podcast political presence presentation privacy processing psychogeography public radio reblog recording recycle relational remix research residency resource responsive reuse robotic sample score second life sensor simulation site-specific social social network software sonification sound soundscape sound sculpture soundtrack sound walk space spatialization spoken word streaming surround sound surveillance symposium synchronous synesthesia synthesizers systems tactical tactile tag tangible technology telematic text theater theory tool toy transmission arts tv ubiquitous upgrade! urban video virtual visualization VJ/DJ voice wearable web 2.0 webcast wireless device wireless network workshop writings

Archives

2017

Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2016

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2015

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2014

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2013

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2012

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2011

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2010

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2009

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2008

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2007

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2006

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2005

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul
Jun | May | Apr | Mar | Feb | Jan

2004

Dec | Nov | Oct | Sep | Aug | Jul

What is this?

Networked_Music_Review (NMR) is a research blog that focuses on emerging networked musical explorations.

Read more...

NMR Commissions

NMR commissioned the following artists to create new sound art works. More...
More NMR Commissions

Net_Music_Weekly

"Two Trains" by Data-Driven DJ aka Brian Foo

Two Trains: Sonification of Income Inequality on the NYC Subway by Data-Driven DJ aka Brian Foo: The goal of this song is to emulate a ride on the New York City Subway's 2 Train ... Read more
Previous N_M_Weeklies

Bloggers

Guest Bloggers:

F.Y.I.

Feed2Mobile
Massachusetts Cultural Council
networked_performance
Networked: a (networked_book) about (networked_art)
New American Radio
New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc.
New York State Council on the Arts, a State agency
New York State Music Fund
Turbulence
Upgrade! Boston

Turbulence Works