sound art Tag

Audio Placebo Plaza: Montreal Edition

Audio Placebo Plaza is a community sound art project conceived by Erin Gee and Julia E Dyck in collaboration with invited artist Vivian Li .

In June 2021 the trio transformed a former perfume shop in the St Hubert Plaza of Montreal into a pop up radio station, sensory room, therapist office, and audio production studio, uniting these spaces through the aesthetics of a sandwich shop or cafe to offer customizable audio placebo “specials” and “combos” to the public.

Founded upon principles of feminism, socialism, and audio production excellence, Audio Placebo Plaza invites everyday people to take appointments with artists to discuss how an audio placebo could help improve their lives. These appointments are entirely focused on the individual and are in themselves part of the process. Common topics of discussion included increasing productivity, self-esteem, self-care, social interactivity, brain hacking, mitigating insomnia, and pain management, but also one’s aural preferences, sensitivities, and curiosities. Intake sessions were conducted in a blended telematic/in-person structure to determine one’s familiarity and comfort levels with a variety of psychosomatic audio techniques including but not limited to soundscapes, binaural beats, simulated social interactions, positive affirmations, drone, participatory vocalization, ASMR, guided meditation and deep listening.

After the consultation is complete, team members met to discuss each participant’s case to fulfill their “prescription,” and also to divide the labor amongst the three creators. The collaborations are non-hierarchical, adaptive, and simultaneous: one might be working on up to four projects at a time, or trade tasks depending on one’s backlog of labor. Labor is divided into recording sounds, conducting intake sessions, writing scripts, performing spoken or sung content, writing music, editing and audio mixing, cleaning and maintaining the shared spares, and communicating with visitors or walk-ins.

Audio Placebo Plaza Radio broadcast was facilitated through a pirate radio transmitter as well as an internet radio station. We broadcast completed placebos, shared technical advice and performance practices during informal critiques, work sessions in progress through the DAW, and sometimes informal chats with visitors. Intake sessions were also broadcasted (with the consent of visitors).

Through Audio Placebo Place, we explore and develop methods for sound and music that propose emotional labor, listening, collaboration and “music as repair” (see Suzanne Cusick, 2008) as key elements that shape the sonic-social encounter between artists and the public.

Can placebos help?
Does sound have the power to process complex emotions?
Can music give you what you need?
Is this even music?

Workshop: ASMR Vocabulary for Composers

Online with Facebook Live
Wednesday, May 26, 2021 at 3 PM EDT
Price: Free
Public Anyone on or off Facebook
Register here: bit.ly/CLC-ASMR
You will receive Zoom login the day of the webinar. Please contact admin@composition.org if you have any issues.
ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) is a term that refers both to an audiovisual genre that has existed since 2009, and an unconscious, sensory reaction of “phantom touch” an individual might feel in response to soft textural sounds greatly amplified. Focusing on the ways that ASMR sounds “hack” into the subconscious of the listener to create emotional reactions, this seminar introduces audio visual vocabularies through “trigger” techniques, making and breaking patterns, and influences from hypnosis and meditation. ASMR is highly mediated through the camera and microphone, so I will also include these considerations. Through analysis of this genre I invite participants to explore techniques together during the webinar with instruments, voices, or everyday objects.
To learn more about the presenter, visit eringee.net.
*Cet événement sera présenté en anglais, mais les questions en français sont acceptées et encouragées !

Festival Inmersiva – Mexico City

FESTIVAL DELAYED DUE TO COVID19 – FEBRUARY 2021

In a very exciting presentation, the Centro de Cultura Digital in Mexico City will be presenting the most ambitious version of telematic artwork Presence (2020, Erin Gee and Jen Kutler) to date.

Presence – Erin Gee & Jen Kutler (Quebec / USA)
Telematic sound performance

Presence is a telematic sound work where two networked performers (Gee and Kutler) send and receive each other’s heart, sweat and respiration data from Canada and the USA, which in turn triggers strong electronic pulses in devices across their skin in response to one another. The two performers listen to a whispered roleplay of verbal suggestions on the topic of impossible and imaginary touch as music is generated live from their embodied reactions in live feedback over the network.

Video and audio livestream will be received at CCD in Mexico City, where a subject will also receive the live electric pulse signals from Jen and Erin’s bodies on both arms.

For more information on this hybrid streaming/real life event: Click here for a preview article published in Cronica MX (Spanish language)

 

 

Noviembre Electrónico – Argentina

November 24-28, 2020
To the Farther (2020) ASMRtronica sound work is featured as part of Noviembre Electrónico in Buenos Aires, Argentina as part of a showcase of artistic work from the 2020 cohort of Amplify D.A.I.

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ABOUT THE EVENT

November Electrónico is the main event for digital and electronic culture in the City of Buenos Aires, which crosses art and science with the alternative world of video games, virtual and augmented reality, and electronic and expanded music.

In this ninth edition, more than 200 artists, developers, researchers and scientists will propose workshops, exhibitions, concerts, workshops, performances, keynote talks, conferences, screenings and many more experiences.

All activities are free and those of a virtual nature will be available at www.noviembreelectronico.elculturalsanmartin.org and at Vivamos Cultura. On the other hand, face-to-face activities in the open air can be enjoyed in the Plaza seca and in the Plaza de las Américas of El Cultural (Sarmiento 1551) from Thursday 26 to Saturday 28, between 6:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m., and require prior registration as indicated in the health protocol.

Each Electronic November is a path towards the convergence between culture, science and technology, which expresses the innovative identity of El Cultural San Martín and explores the construction of new audiences.

Since 2012, more than 130 thousand visitors have shared samples, workshops, performances and all kinds of interactive activities, with virtual and augmented reality, electronic music, visualizations and mapping, robots, video games, digital and 3D manufacturing, drones and programming languages.

November Electrónico has the support of the Ministry of Culture of the City of Buenos Aires, the Fundación Banco Ciudad, Fundación Williams, Empower Communities, Cultural Participation Patronage, the British Council, the French Institute, Pro-Helvetia, the Galileo Galilei Planetarium, Centro of Experimentation and Research in Electronic Arts – IIAC – National University of Tres de Febrero, Understanding Visual Music – UVM, National University of San Martín, Object a, FUNDAV.

Dyscorpia 2.1 Online Exhibition

I was invited to contribute my video work Machine Unlearning (2020) as a part of the Dyscorpia 2.1 online exhibition

DYSCORPIA 2.1 is an online exhibition that responds to ideas of THE BODY AND TECHNOLOGY IN THE TIME OF COVID – 19 organized by Marilene Oliver at the University of Alberta.

DYSCORPIA is a project conceived and developed by a core team of researchers at the University of Alberta that came together to share their research and ideas about future of the body and technology. Together, they coined the term DYSCORPIA to describe the uncanny feeling we are increasingly subjected to as are called to relearn to use our bodies are a result of new digital technologies such as smart phones, automated cars, contemporary medical devices and digital assistants such as Siri and Alexa. This led to a series of collaborations and interdisciplinary projects that are central to the Dyscorpia exhibition.

NYC Remote Music Hackathon

I have been invited with Jen Kutler to present the open-source technologies behind our first collaborative work Presence (2020) as part of the NYC Remote Music Hackathon. As part of this workshop we will walk through the various technologies we are using, which include open source hardware and software, in order to allow fellow hackers and makers to create their own wild togetherness apparatuses.

For more information please click here for the event website , otherwise you can check out the live streaming video links below! We are presenting our work at 4pm EST.

 

 

Web Residency: Saw Video

I have been selected alongside three other residents for Saw Video’s Stay At Home Internet Residency.

I am especially pleased to have the opportunity to collaborate with Jen Kutler on a new work for telematic sound and video during the course of this residency.  We are having an insane amount of fun creating feedback systems for music and biodata that integrate transcutaneous nerve stimulation over web sockets.

Over the course of five weeks (April 29th – May 29th), we will meet via zoom/hangouts to discuss readings, media, and art making. Individual web-based studio visits with national scholars, curators and artists will be had, and we will diffuse the artists’ works on May 28th. Please sign up for our newsletter here, and follow us on social media for more information on artists’ diffusion scheduling!

to the sooe @ Squeaky Wheel, Buffalo, NY

Love & Sex Show: Sweet Nothings

Special Event | Friday, February 14, 7–10 pm

My work with Sofian Audry to the sooe (2018) will be featured as part of  The Love and Sex Show: Sweet Nothings at Squeaky Wheel Film and Media Arts Centre in Buffalo, NY. This edition of the annual event focuses on sound and voice, featuring my audio work on a set of wireless headphones that can be worn throughout the gallery, as well as film installations and kareoke and performance by Thirza Cuthand, Jess Dobkin, Caroline Doherty, Lauren Fournier, Erin Gee, Dina Georgis and Sharlene Bamboat, Desiree Kee, Hope Mora, Michael Robinson, and Wayne Yung.

Machine Unlearning

Vision calibration from Machine Unlearning (2020). Photography by Elody Libe. Image courtesy of the artist.

In Machine Unlearning, the artist greets the viewer and slowly offers them a unique neural conditioning “treatment”: sonically reproducing the unraveling outputs of an LSTM algorithm as it “unlearns” through whispering, moving backwards in time through its epochs of training. This aural treatment is couched in a first-person roleplay scenario that grounds the viewer through a series of simple audio visual tests. At no point is the neural network technology “seen” – it is instead performed by a human interlocuter, translated into affective vocality and whispered text. The algorithm was created by media artist Sofian Audry, and trained on the text of Emily Brontë’s novel Wuthering Heights (1847). This novel was chosen in part because of its richly poetic syntax, but also for its feminine vocality and conceptual themes of love and intergenerational trauma. Machine Unlearning is a novel combination of neural network technologies and the popular internet genre “Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response,” or ASMR. ASMR is a social media genre that has developed largely through massive social media metrics in the form of upvotes, clicks, comments, subscribes, and likes in response to audio visual stimuli that creates feelings of mild euphoria, relaxation and pleasure. ASMR fans online seek out specific video content that causes the physiological reaction of “tingles” – tingling sensations across the skin, a mild body high, or simply a means of falling asleep. Gee considers ASMR as a form of psychosomatic body hacking. By combining machine learning with ASMR, Gee draws parallels between cutting edge autonomous/non-conscious algorithms and the autonomous/unconscious functions of the human body. Just as ASMRtists use specific sounds and visual patterns in their videos to “trigger” physical reactions in the viewer, machine learning algorithms also unconsciously respond to patterns perceived through limited senses in order to develop learning (and unlearning) results. The artist’s emphasis on whispering the textual outputs of the algorithm as it slowly “unlearns” allows the listener to grasp the materiality of machine learning processes at a human level, but also a subconscious level: allowing one’s body to be mildly and charmingly “hacked” through soft and gentle play.

Credits: Photography and videography by Elody Libe.

Production Support: Machine Unlearning video installation was produced at Perte de Signal with the support of the MacKenzie Art Gallery for the exhibition To the Sooe (2020) curated by Tak Pham.

The roleplay performance was developed during my artistic residency at Locus SonusÉcole Superieur d’art d’Aix en Provence and Laboratoire PRISM.

Custom LSTM Algorithm created by media artist Sofian Audry

More...

The use of the word “intelligence” in the metaphor of AI focuses on higher functions of consciousness that algorithms do not possess. While algorithms have not meaningfully achieved a humanistic consciousness to date, today’s algorithms act autonomously on sensory information, processing data from its environment in unconscious, automatic ways. The human brain also responds unconsciously and automatically to sensory data in its environment, for example, even if you are not conscious of how hot a stove is, if you place your hand on a hot stove, your hand will automatically pull away. These unconscious, physiological actions in the sensory realm points to an area of common experience between algorithms and the human.  For more explanation of these ideas, take a look at the work of postmodern literary critic N. Katherine Hayles in her 2017 book Unthought: The power of the cognitive nonconscious.  In this way I wonder if the expression “autonomous intelligence” makes more sense than “artificial intelligence”, however like posthumanist feminist Rosi Braidotti I am deeply suspicious of the humanist pride that our species takes in the word “intelligence” as something that confers a special status and justification for domination of other forms of life on earth.

Live Performance

This work was first developed as a performance that debuted at Cluster Festival, Winnipeg in 2019.  During live performance, each audience member dons a pair of wireless headphones.  The performance allows the audience members to see the ASMR “result” of the performance for camera, simultaneous with the ability to see my “backstage” manipulation of props and light in real time.

Machine Unlearning (2019) Performance at Cluster Festival, Winnipeg. Photo: Leif Norman.

Machine Unlearning (2019) Performance at Cluster Festival, Winnipeg. Photo: Leif Norman.

Machine Unlearning (2019) Performance at Cluster Festival, Winnipeg. Photo: Leif Norman.

Cover Story: Leader Post

I was surprised for my exhibition To the Sooe to be featured as front-page news on January 27, 2020 in the Leader Post, the leading newspaper of Regina Saskatchewan. Inside the paper you can find an interview with exhibition curator Tak Pham and I regarding my solo show at the MacKenzie Art Gallery, To the Sooe.

““Erin’s work is very, very immersive. It’s really bringing the reaction, the chemistry, the biology within your body and really bringing it outwards and put(ting) it on display,” said Tak Pham, who curated this exhibition at the MacKenzie.”

Click here to read the full article.