Archive for March 2013

Stumbled upon this interesting video by Adrian Belew on the history of guitar noise:

Being a guitarist for over 35 years more focused on experimenting with sounds and sound effects than on creating melodies, this is a very interesting topic to me. And Adrian Belew is of course the nr. 1 noise master on electric guitar in the world (remember “Remain in Light“, King Crimson etc.?). The video is part 2 in a series of 3, check the other 2 on YouTube if you are interested in (the history of) guitar noises, effects pedals and Adrian Belew’s playing.


Yesterday I visited the Barbican for their Brain Waves Weekender, a range of exhibitions fusing art with neuroscience.  Along with a kid-friendly dissection of a jelly brain and an invitation to knit a neuron, the event featured two sound-related demonstrations.

The first was Music of the Mind – a performance by Finn Peters, Prof Mark d’Inverno, Dr Mick Grierson and Dr Matthew Yee-King of Goldsmiths University, made using ‘brain computer interfaces’ translated into sound via headsets usually used for gaming, coupled with custom software.  Interesting idea, though the music itself was a little too avant garde for my taste.  You can see an example of the project here.

The second was a Sonic Tour of the Brain by Guerilla Science, a playlist of about twenty minutes exploring the different sounds relating to the structure and functions of the brain. Two tracks featured the actual sounds of the…

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Fellow art blogger Gwen Kuo commented on my post on noise wizard Tim Kaiser with a link to a post on the work of female sound artist Qin Yufen. Born in the Chinese town of Qindao in 1954, artist Qin Yufen has spent the last 15 years living and working in Berlin. This cross-cultural biography is  reflected in her site-sensitive installation work. Combining western artistic techniques with such symbolically eastern materials as bamboo, rice paper, and silk, Qin engages an ongoing dialogue between form and content, regionalism and internationalism, and East and West. At times serious, humorous, sublime, and simple, the aesthetics of her painterly sculptures and sound installations have been compared with traditional Chinese poetry, especially in her use of metaphor.

Qin’s site-specific sound installations present sublime aesthetics which have been compared with classical Asian painting“, according to Gwen Kuo. A video and pictures of several of her sound  installations can be found on Gwen’s Gwenart blog in the post “Qin Yufen : Sound, Art, Chinoisuire“. Check this post and other art related posts out on this interesting blog.

Visited STRP 2013 for the first time yesterday. The theme of STRP 2013 exhibition  is “City of Cyborgs” . STRP states that in 2013 due to the advance of internet, smart phones, social media etc. we are now all “citizens of Cyborg City”. The real question is not whether we want to be cyborgs, but what kind of cyborgs we want to be. So STRP invited artists who explore the concept of the cyborg.

The most impressive piece in this exhibition is the exoskeleton  of Australian artist Stelarc:

Stelarc focusses exclusively on enhancing/redesigning the human body in his performance art pieces, in fact creating a “cyborg”. Stelarc has been extending his body through performances since the late 1960s. Stelarc’s artistic strategy revolves around the idea of “enhancing the body” both in a physical and technical manner. It originates as a polarism between the “primal desire” to defeat the force of gravity with primitive rituals and a low- tech and the hi-tech performance with the third arm and the related cybersystem.

His intention in both cases is to “express an idea with his direct experience.”:


Quite an interesting artist IMO, so here are some links to enable you to explore his work in detail:

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March 2013

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