From the 18th-20th November 2015 I took part in a residency at Access Space organised by Alex McLean as part of the Sonic Pattern and the Textility of Code series of events from Inhabiting the Hack.
As part of this residency I worked with sonic, digital and textile artists Magdalena Halay, Nora O Murchú and Toni Buckby. The residency was open-ended, with no set goals other than to investigate ideas surrounding our disciplines and relating them back to the broader themes of Sonic Pattern.
The residency began with a workshop in Tablet Weaving, a technique using rotations of square card to create patterned weaves. By following simple procedures tablet weaving can create interesting geometrical patterns with immediate results (my own weave is pictured). I plan to add to my openFrameworks-based live coding visual software with a programmable emulation of tablet weaving controlled by musical data.
Then the rest of the residency was used to explore particular projects. In my case I collaborated with interdisciplinary textile artist and weaver Toni Buckby, in order to create a gesture tracking glove using Arduino (pictured), which would graph Toni’s weaving hand gestures of the course of a live performance which was being dictated by a second gesture sensor working in tandem with a program written by Toni and Alex McLean. During the performance the glove would also feed data into SuperCollider, and I live-coded the sounds produced in response to Toni’s hand gestures in the context of a larger group improvisation. The graph produced as a result of the performance will then be laser-cut to form a performance artefact (a test pressing is pictured), and possibly source material for further performances.
Through the residency I experimented with the production of performance artefacts and sonic objects through laser cutting, as well as utilising accurate representation of gestures in space using Euler angles derived from accelerometer and gyroscope data (previously I had only used raw values for comparatively rudimentary ways of controlling sound). I also gained experience in weaving techniques and knowledge about textile skills through collaboration with Toni.
Thanks to Alex McLean and everyone at Access Space.
I had previously been using the SuperCollider IDE to do my live coding, however it had the limitations of not being very extensible, as well as lacking the flexibility of other editors. Using a combination of SuperCollider’s Vim mode, a number of Vim extensions, the apple ITerm2 and its transparency and (in this case) Max/MSP/Jitter fed by SoundFlower, I can not only code more efficiently using multiple windows simultaneously, but I can easily display visuals behind my code, adding to the potentially quite dry ‘pure code’ projection I have previously been using during gigs.
Vim is quite a step for me, and for this performance I had only been using it for a few days. As a result, my performance is a little bit loose. I also am working on developing my own sound-responsive visual setup, so the jitter patch I used for visuals was pulled from here and altered to be changed live (using the code window on the right of the display).
For the next while I will be tuning this setup, as well as writing some code to produce and live-modify visuals. I will be performing for ICLC 2015 using this technique also.
For the major project portion of my BA Music degree I gave a 40 minute Live Coding performance at Culture Lab in May. This performance was effectively a summary of my progress in learning Live Coding over the course of the past academic year.
I, as always, used SuperCollider and integrated a simple lighting setup to be controlled on the fly using code.
Here are screen, video and audio recordings of the set.
I am pleased to announce that I am now a core company member of State of Grace, a North-East based performance collective, specialising in performance practice and research across disciplines. I will be working with State of Grace through training and production, with the aim of producing performance works encompassing a wide range of creative disciplines, including Dance, Theatre, Spoken Word, Music, Visual Art and others.
I have been lucky enough to be a part of two previous State of Grace training periods, which culminated in performances.
Here is the video documentation of the set I performed in as part of Babble at BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art alongside Charlie Dearnley, Lauren Vevers and TURC. The performance took the form of a text reading by Charlie and Lauren which I live-processed using SuperCollider, recording snippets of their readings throughout and morphing them into rhythms, tones, repetitions, groans and stutters. Behind this, TURC played a musical accompaniment inspired by their work with dark techno and electronic music.
The performance evolved throughout as Charlie and Lauren’s dialogue became more intense along with TURC’s music, and my live recorded material became more diverse. It culminates in an instrumental section where TURC let rip with a strong rhythmic flow and I performed multiple processes simultaneously on all of the voice samples I had recorded, followed by Charlie and Lauren bringing the performance to a close with a redux of some of the themes presented throughout their text.
This is a screen and audio recording of my SuperCollider techno set for the gateshead Algorave, which also featured Ballotts, JoAnne, Miss Blueberry, Section_9, Tim Shaw, Yeah You, Alo Allik, Sick Lincoln and Mariam Rezeai.
“Algorave is made from “sounds wholly or predominantly characterised by the emission of a succession of repetitive conditionals“. These days just about all electronic music is made using software, but with artificial barriers between the people creating the software algorithms and the people making the music. Using systems built for creating algorithmic music, such as IXI Lang, overtone, puredata, Max/MSP, SuperCollider, Impromptu, Fluxus and Tidal, these barriers are broken down, and musicians are able to compose and work live with their music as algorithms. This has good and bad sides, but a different approach leads to interesting places.”