The Electromagnetic Fountain

Presentation at Music Technology Days, Bergen

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On Thursday 11th September I’ll use the Electromagnetic Fountain as a case study for my presentation at Music Technology Days 2008, organised by BEK (Bergen Centre for Electronic Art). Here’s the description of my presentation.

My presentation will consist of a case study of my current artistic endeavor; the development of a portable fountain that temporarily appears in urban spaces and reveals the presence of the otherwise hidden, electromagnetic twin city. A redundant parabolic antenna dish will form the bowl in which it performs an aquatic choreography generated by the sound of electromagnetic activity detected around it. Though in principle the Electromagnetic Fountain works like other musical fountains, the sound will not be heard by the public, so to stand out from the crowd its choreography must be engaging. It should misbehave, and give feedback to the public when mobile devices are used in its close proximity.

In my presentation I will focus on the role that sound phenomenology and technology plays in this project – from the detection and perception of electromagnetic waves, to the influence of sound perception in the fountain design process. Last, but not least is the (re)search for a meaningful approach to using the erratic sound of detected signals to control the fountain’s electrical pumps, water valves and lights.

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