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Blog archive for June 2004


June 2, 2004

The last couple of days has been spent on accounting and tax reporting for 2003.000 Nothing exciting about it.

ArtForum Online Symposium on Sound Art

June 2, 2004

ArtForum has an online symposium on Sound Art Now featuring a discussion between art historian Branden W. Joseph composer and author David Toop curator Anthony Huberman and sound artists Carl Michael von Hausswolff Steve Roden Marina Rosenfeld and Stephen Vitiello. The discussion is moderated by philosopher and critic Christoph Cox.

via Erlend Hammer

Strategic Plan

June 2, 2004

Kunsthøgskolen i Bergen recently implemented a strategic plan for the period lasting from now on until the planned relocalisation in 2009.000 The plan (Norwegian only) is available here. Artistic research and development has a prominent place.


June 4, 2004

Last week I met Susanna Hertrich førsteamanuensis (professor) at Section for Visual Comunication at KHIB. In October she’s invited me to take part in a workshop on the programming languange Processing held by Marius Watz. According to the developers Processing is a programming language and environment built for the electronic arts and visual design communities. It was created to teach fundamentals of computer programming within a visual context and to serve as an electronic sketchbook.

I’ve downloaded the alpha version and will look into it during the summer.

Music for dot matrix printers

June 4, 2004

Gisle played this for me in the car a while ago: Music for dot matrix printers.


June 4, 2004

Coming September Ellen Røed (aka ink) is arranging a workshop named xyt. xyt will be a hands-on workshop involving a number of artists with various backgrounds focusing on ways of dealing with and organizing time within a non-linear and non-narrative expressive language in different time based art forms and how/if compositional strategies and techniques developed within one art form can be applied elsewhere.

Me and Ellen had a long and interesting discussion today trying to work out a text describing the aims of the workshop for invited artists.

Save Critical Art Ensemble

June 5, 2004

More information at You can also sign up for a mailing list providing updates on the case. Amanda McDonald Crowley and Eric Kluitenberg at de Balie has written an open letter of protest.

Steve Kurtz was supposed to hold a workshop at ioLAB in Stavanger the coming autumn.

Anal Magic with Kenny G

June 6, 2004

Kenny G (no not the we love to hate rather the one with a popular guide to unpopular music) do a three hours a week radio show at Wfmu a freeform radio in New York. The radio is also available online.

The playlist for Kenny G reveals a lot of interesting program. Erlend Hammer when passing the URL to me particularly recommended two programs sent in 2002 giving a 6 hour overview of the history of sound art. Look for these two:

> 11.27.02 playlist | Listen to this show | Thanksgiving Leftovers: A Lecture on Sound Art Repeated the Day After it was Given
> 12.11.02 playlist | Listen to this show | Sound Art Lecture Part 2

Off to Oslo

June 7, 2004

I’m off to Oslo today to work with Verdensteatret for the rest of the week. We are going to make some adjustments to the recent production “Konsert for Grønland”. I guess we’ll also start to think of future projects as well. Internet access and time might be limited for the coming days so the blog might be quiet for a while.

Poor Oslo

June 7, 2004

What did they do to deserve this?


June 14, 2004

announcement – version 1.000 release candidate 1 of the video software
for theatre “mirage”.

From their experience in 2001 on “Huntsville L’Ordre du Monde” ( ) using max/nato.0+55
Pedro Soler &amp Georges Gagneré realised the necessity for a realtime
video tool specially designed for the constraints of the theatre – very
different from the needs of a vj. Fundamental was to develop a system
of presets powerful and rapid compositing tools and the ability to
work smoothly in a networked environment.

They invited Jasch ( to develop this tool with
them using Max &amp SoftVNS in OS9 &amp Mirage development process began in
august 2002 for the production of the theatre piece “La Pensée” (
premièred March 2003 Strasbourg - ). Since then it has been
used in numerous workshops in France the most recent being Escale 3 in
Mulhouse &amp Escale 4 in Paris (
where Jonathan Lee Marcus &amp Johnny Dekam worked on the port to OSX as
well as a general tidy up and the incorporation of multiple sources.

Work on this has now finished and we are pleased to present Mirage 1.000
for your experimentation. Mirage 1.000 is free software released under
the GNU General Public License – available both as source patches and
binary. To download contribute etc. go to :

AudioSculpt v.2.2

June 14, 2004

A new version of IRCAM Forum software Audiosculpt has bees released.

New features:

  • Realtime mode
    AudioSculpt can now playback a processed version in realtime. This
    allows for quick experimentation and verifcation of treatments FFT
    settings etc. The realtime mode is invoked by clicking the loadspeaker
    icon next to the play buttons. The loadspeaker button is also found in
    the Realtime Processing Settings dialog box so you can hear the results
    of various processing settings.
  • Markers
    Three types of markers can be automatically generated the new Transient
    Markers which use a novel algorithm for detection transients and the
    two types already found in AudioSculpt 1.200 named spectral flow markers.
    When these markers are generated a slider appears in the window with
    which a threshold can be set to filter markers based on their value.
    Markers can be editted by hand and exported to SDIF for use in other
  • Fundamental Frequency Analysis
    The Fundamental Frequency or F0 analysis generates an SDIF file holding
    the estimated fundamental frequency of the soundfile. The F0 is
    displayed on the sonogram and can be editted with the BpfTools and
  • Transposition
    Transposition is now possible with and without Time Correction
    adjustable per treatment. This feature is also available for dynamic
  • Selection
    When no selection is made new treatments are applied to the whole file.

Bug Fixes:

  • 24 bit etc.
    In version 2.100 support for a certain number of soundfile types was
    broken notably 24 bit files and some SoundDesigner II files. All of
    these shoudl work correctly again now.
  • Interrupting processing
    Clicking the stop button in the Console window now produces usable
    files even when normalization is used
  • Diapason
    The diapason should be correctly aligned to the sonogram now.

A large number of other bugs was fixed.

Future Verdensteatret performances

June 14, 2004

In the second part of 2004 Verdensteatret is planning on the following performances:

  • September 26 Stockholm: Festival “Perfect Performance” at Kulturhuset Kilen
  • October 13-14 Trondheim: Trondheim Matchmaking at Trondheim kunstmuseum
  • October 16 and 17 Oslo: Ultima Oslo Contemparary Music Festival at Black Box Theatre
  • November 19-20 Stavanger: Tou Scene
  • 4 and 5 December Bergen: “Detox 2004” at BIT Teatergarasjen

Installation in Trondheim

June 14, 2004

A new installation in collaboration with Jeremy Welsh and Jon Arne Mogstad is planned at Trondhjems kunstforening in September 2004.000 Most likely the exhibition will be in the period 3-19/9. The exhibition space in Trondhjems kunstforening consists of several seperate rooms at two floors of the building. One of the challenges will be how to create the impression of one installation when it’s split between several rooms separated by other rooms (reception stairway etc.). The material from the installation “Dialogue/Transition” in March this year will form the basis of the installation but suplemented by furter development of material. I’d like to give each of the rooms a different sound colour while at the same time adhering to a common overall expressive language.

I’ve applied to KHIB for grants to get more loudspeakers. If the installation is split between three rooms a total of 12 loyudspeakers easily results in a boring “one loudspeaker in each corner of the rooms” layout that I’d like to avoid.

Jeremy has suggested a title for the installation: “A Can of Stellar Stripes and Other Vessels”


June 14, 2004

“Half-intellectually and half sentimentally when the war came along I decided to use only quiet sounds. There seemed to be no truth no good in anything big in society. But quiet sounds were like loneliness or love or friendship. Permanent I thought values independent at least from Life Time and Coca-Cola.”

John Cage. “Lecture on Nothing”. Silence.


June 15, 2004

When giving a presentation of my revised project description during the two-day “kunststipendiat-samling” (gathering of fellows supervisors and the board of the Research Fellowship in the Arts Program in March this year one of the participants asked me if I would consider my work music or sound design. I rejected the notion of defining my work as sound design. The text on sound design posted earlier today provided me with a simple argument for this: My work is intended to be non-functional.

Vademecum of digital art

June 15, 2004 suggests a vademecum of digital art.

“Digital” art is still struggling to get into Contemporary Art that is in Art History. Why is it so difficult ? Because the worse stands alongside the best indistinctively. Cause or consequence critique is scarce. Confronted to this void the task of curators juries commissionners is difficult though crucial.

This vademecum gathers some precepts to keep in mind in order to avoid the worse in terms of “digital” artwork or “digital” art project description.

Sound Design

June 15, 2004

During the Reconances 2004 several interesting subprograms are offered. Ircam Forum Workshop is scheduled for October 13-15 in parallell to the Second symposium on Sound Design:

Sound design is a general term meaning activities of applied sounding creativity. Most of these activities have existed for a long time whereas others appeared with the development of sound editing/mixing tools and others are still being developed.

Nonetheless there has not yet been any founding process for sound design in the same way as for instance the Bauhaus Group formalized the relationship between Art workshop technology and Science while respecting the essence of each of these three domains and defining them with respect to industrial production.

Currently sound design is at the crossroad between many different domains and lacks a proper identity because many fundamental questions remain unanswered. We will try to give some answers to such questions pointing out first of all existing sound design practices (object space audio signalling media) then analyzing the processes in which they adapt to daily life applications and to the market. Finally such questioning will require that we state the limitations and requirements which would enable the definition of sound design as a domain per se.

Whilst sound design can take many shapes the goal of sound design is always rather the same: to modify to create sounds or sounding spaces to give meaning interest or aesthetics. In a way this can be close to the general concept of design which is to create while taking into account aesthetics and function.

The deadline for submission has been extended to the 25th of June.

Electronic Arts Festival in Sao Paulo

June 15, 2004

FILE Festival Internacional de Linguagem Eletrônica (Electronic Language International Festival) will be held in Sao Paulo Brazil from November 22nd to December 12th 2004.000 Submissions are due today June 15.

Via grandtextauto


June 16, 2004

10 years ago or so I was working extensively on Sturm-Liouville equations for a Master degree in oceanography. Afterwards I turned to music starting my education as a composer at the Grieg Academy. Ever since I started working on digital sound/signal processing I’ve been playing with the idea of trying out ways of applying Sturm-Liouville systems for sound synthesis or processing.

The word eigenvalue also have some interesting etymologic connotations.

Brian Eno Interviewed on KPFA’s Ode to Gravity 1980

June 18, 2004

There’s a lengthy (ca. 2 hours) Eno interview from 1980 at Other Minds Archive.

Brian Eno discuss phonetic poetry writing lyrics the spirit of inquisitiveness some thoughts on Steve Reich and his music – the history of the recording studio as a compositional tool" collaboration with David Byrne on “My Life in the Bush of Ghosts” etc.

There’s a lot more of interest at the same site.

Via Erlend Hammer

Sonic Architecture

June 18, 2004

Sonic Architecture formed by Bill and Mary Buchen has been doing a number of interactive sound installations for childrens museums galleries and public sites. Wind Antenna (1982) employed parabollic loudspeakers.

Max 4.5000

June 18, 2004

Max 4.500 is announced to be released in July.

Anechoic chamber

June 21, 2004

The Murray Hill anechoic chamber built in 1940 is the world’s oldest wedge-based anechoic chamber.


June 21, 2004

…a few years later I was to move from structure to process from music as an object having parts to music without beginning middle or end music as weather.

John Cage: An Autobiographical Statement

Ø yvind

June 21, 2004

Øyvind Brandsegg has been offered one of three new positions in the Research Fellowship in the Arts Program. I don’t know who the remaining two will be. Here’s an extract from his mail to the Csound mailing list a few days ago:

hi all

just an announcement in my happiness today.
I have been offered a position for doctorate studies
my subject will be the exploration of the borders between improvisation and composition. I’ll be delving into algorithmic composition with more detail and the term “realtime composition” is also related to what I will be doing. I will build further on my work with ImproSculpt creating a version that incorporates more compositional techniques and better sampling algorithm for ImproSculpt with some aspect of phrase feature recognition.
This is just so perfect.


Mozilla 0.9000

June 21, 2004

Mozilla Firefox 0.9 has been released. It offers some extensions that seems very useful for instance the QuickNote utility offering a light text editor in the browser. Might turn in handy when writing blog notes.

Cage and the anechoic room

June 21, 2004

Cage’s visit to the anechoic chamber at Harvard University in 1948 has been refered to again and again:

“I heard two sounds one high and one low. When I described them to the engineer in charge he informed me that the high one was my nervous system in operation the low one my blood in circulation.”

I find it hard to believe that you are able to hear your nervous system and has been searching around for facts. They seem hard to find. Didier A Depireux in a mail in 1998 seems to suggest that the high frequencies might have been caused by tinnitus.

The Wikipedia entry on John cage also seems to question the explanation offered by the engineer:

Whatever the truth of these explanations Cage had gone to a place where he expected there to be no sound and yet there was some. “Until I die there will be sounds. And they will continue following my death. One need not fear about the future of music.”

I guess it’s a question of honoring mistakes as hidden intentions…

June 22, 2004

Østnorsk Jazzsenter AKKS and BLÅ has made a space for sound related preproduction in Oslo. The space is suitable for professional and semi-professional bands/musicians in need of a room with PA system and piano for rehearsal prior to tours or concerts.

frozen words

June 23, 2004

…in a certain city words congealed with the cold the moment they were spoken and later as they thawed out people heard in the summer what they had said to one another in the winter…"

Kahn quoting Plutarch quoting Antiphanes.

Out at sea with little sight a strange assortment of sounds are heard… the skipper intervenes to put an end to speculation. Their location skirts the Frozen Sea the site of a bloody battle during the winter between the Arimaspians and the Nephelibates. Such battle sounds would include the “words and cries of men and women the hacking slashing and hewing of battle-axes the shocking knocking and jolting of armours and harnesses the neighing of horses and all other martial din and noise”. It was so cold that the sounds froze and fell to the ground and never reached the ears of the combatants perhaps the whole battle was silent. Even though sounds in general might lack the humidity of breath it was as they took the form of speech and speech became but a vaporizer of thought. Now that it was springtime all these sounds long inaudible were being released and created a racket although not in their original temporal sequences of action.

Pantagruel found irrefutable evidence stewn over the ground of the island. These still-frozen sounds seemed “like your rough sugar plums of many colours like those used in heraldry.” Friar John held what he thought was a big word in his hands. As it melted like snow it gave off the sound of an uncut chestnut exploding in a fire this was interpreted as “the report of a field piece.” Handfuls of the multicolored plums some not pleasant to the eye were thrown onto the deck of the ship:

“When they had been all melted together we heard a strange noise hin hin hin hin his tick tock trasck brededin brededack frr frr frr bou bou bou bou bou bou bou bou track track trr trr trr trrr trrrrrr on on on on on on ououououon gog magog and I do not know what other barbarous words whick the pilot said were the noises made by the charging squadrons the shock and neighing og horses.”

Kahn (ibid) p. 205 quoting Rabelais’s Gargantua and pantagruel (1532).

New rcord by Eno & Fripp

June 25, 2004

Brain Eno and Robert Fripp released a new record yesterday “The Equatorial Stars”. Judging from the two mp3 samples available it sounds promising.

More info at Enoshop.

National Romantisism Revisited

June 28, 2004

Vestlandsutstillingen an annual exhibition of artists from western parts of Norway has announced the call for participation for 2005.000 In 2005 Norway is celebrating 100 years of independence from Sweden. At the moment there’s also a strong movement towards defining the western parts of Norway as a region in the hope of getting more resources and a more independent position as compared to the capital of Oslo.

To me it seems that the winter olympics at Lillehammer in 1994 caused a shift in Norwegian mentality being more nationalistic narrow-minded self-sufficient and ignorant about the rest of the world. Gro Harlem Brundtland prime minister back then launched the slogan “it’ s typical Norwegian to be good”. This was further promoted during the election on whether to join EU or not a few years later. “Annerledeslandet” (sorry this is hard to translate… It was a major retoric notion during the campaign and roughly translates as “The Other or Different Nation”) Norway did not join EU. I fear that the celebration of 2005 might further promote unhealthy nationalism and isolationism. The topic of Vestlandsutstillingen 2005 is based on the historic role of Norwegian Fiords and gives me the creep.


June 28, 2004

A new edition of Hz-journal is available online. Among others there’s an article by Kim Cascone on laptop music.