Networked_Music_Review

Net_Music_Weekly: Sensorium Re-Connected

ampbod.jpgSensorium Re-Connecteda generative composition for for 5 PCs and 2 voices by Andrew Garton :: January 11, 2009; 11:03 – 11.45 pm CET :: Kunstradio – Radiokunst :: Listen here.

From August 18 to September 6, 1997, Australia’s The Listening Room presented Sensorium Connect / Body Morph, a generative composition by Andrew Garton and comprised of sounds sampled from performances by Stelarc. Sensorium Connect was the first Listening Room project entirely produced for online and was streamed for its entire six week duration.

On January 11, KunstRadio broadcasts an entirely new version of this work. Sensorium Re-Connected commemorates the work of The Listening Room and the contribution this piece made to furthering radio and sound art online in Australia.

Sensorium Re-Connected is both composition and process. The composition is comprised of sounds created by the artist, Stelarc, in collaboration with Rainer Linz, in performances of Ping BodyAmplified Body from the series. The sounds include brain waves, heartbeat and blood flow. The sounds of Stelarc’s third mechanical hand are also amplified.

Sensorium Re-Connected also includes sampled sounds triggered from an angle transducer that measures the bending angle of the legs and a sensor that monitors CO2 in the breathing. “These variations make it a much less predictable signal and a much more beautiful resulting sound. The sounds that are indicative of the physiological function of the body, and the mechanical operation of the third hand are rendered neutral in their associations so that they don’t sound like a musical instrument or natural sound or some kind of other technological object that we know and identify with”. (Stelarc, 1996)

Acoustically what’s happening in Stelarc’s performances is a kind of aura is generated around the body. “When internal body signals are amplified they are, in a sense, emptied from the body into the room within which the body is performing. The humanoid shape of the body that originally contains the sound now becomes the cuboid space of the room”. (Stelarc, 1996)

In Sensorium Re-Connected, these sounds are further emptied into the radio broadcast spectrum and further, into what may be referred to as the suspended ever-evolving space of the Internet: an acoustical landscape translating from humanoid form to cuboid space to space as instrument.

Generative music is algorithmically driven to produce variation, ongoing evolution and development of sounds. The process of creation, performance and distribution of music is changing. The Internet is an amorphous infrastructure for the liberation of creative ideas and is no doubt influencing the work of artists the world over. It is a time of enriching exploration and discovery that is akin to the period during which Francesco Pierro was to discover perspective and the body’s relationship to space. — Andrew Garton 1997

For more information including the paper Breaking The Loop: Music is Dead, see the wiki.

Andrew Garton lives in Melbourne, Australia. He is a composer, performer, and Internet artist with an extensive background in experimental electronic composition and the performing and digital arts. He has a strong interest in public communications, with many years’ experience working on public access computer network projects in Australia, Southeast Asia and Indochina. In recent years Garton has merged his Internet activities with his interest in computer-based music systems and has been commissioned to create numerous networked sound pieces and installations, both streaming and generative compositions. Garton is co-founder of the Web production house, Toy Satellite, principal artist of Secession Records, and a director of Community Communications Online (c2o), a member of the UN-affiliated Association for Progressive Communications. Recent work explores the reclamation of public space via generative sound-scapes and the Internet as theatre of suspended space. Garton performs solo and collaborative works under the names, “lost_time_accident”, “Fierce Throat” and the “Electro Pathological Consort”.


Jan 7, 2009
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Networked_Music_Review (NMR) is a research blog that focuses on emerging networked musical explorations.

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