by Pedro Rebelo
|[picts 1 2 3] [sub_friction video] [sound: partialspace sub_friction 1 2 3] [tech]|
sub_friction is a prescribed space where (dis)ordered sound is articulated by movement. Seven virtual 3D enclosures are brought into presence through the movement of sound, exploring the dynamics of the inside and the outside.
The sound world of the piece is based on pre-recorded materials that are linked through the use of harmonic distortion. The sources, derived from instruments such as the electric guitar, saxophone and violin, co-exist in an ambiguous territory between noise and sound.
The performance of sub_friction entails interactive spatialization of these materials. Sonic and visual materials are triggered using a custom-designed interface based on a digital graphics tablet.
An extrapolation in scale transforms the small surface of the tablet into a 20m2 virtual sound world in which events seem to fly around the listener. Processes such as the Doppler effect as well as room filtering allow for a coherence between the visuals and the sonic events in the work.
The performance of sub_friction is integrated into the installation “Partial Space” by using the resonant frequencies of the performance space as a basis for the inside of the virtual enclosures. Both the audience and the performer play the space simultaneously by triggering resonant materials. While the audience plays “Partial Space”, providing an abstracted spectral drone composed of pure tones, the performer plays sub_friction, providing the narrative of a modulated space.
Duration: 12 minutes
Partial Space is a site-specific sound installation which explores the natural resonances of an indoor space. By walking around the installation space the audience triggers sine tones of frequencies which correspond to the natural resonant modes of that same space.
The space is divided into eight areas which are mapped to the frequencies of the eight strongest partials in the spectrum of that room’s resonances. When in movement, the audience disturbs the spectrum by activating slightly more complex sounds or by generating “beating” frequencies. The simplicity of the generated sounds enables an awareness of both the individual partials as triggered by visitors as well as the synthesis/harmonies achieved by the faster movement of an individual or larger numbers of visitors.
The placement of the partial-triggering areas (which are not defined visually) is dependent on the architectural features of the site itself. Although the eight areas should be of roughly identical dimensions, they are inherent to structural features of the space such as shape, the existence of columns or dividing walls. The relationship between the triggering area and the partial which it activates is largely arbitrary and changes as the piece goes through the various stages in the time-varying spectrum.