The Art of Media. etc.

"Leg crushed and then eaten by a mutated Boa Constrictor… Make good art." Neil Gaiman

Timothy Nohe

Timothy Nohe is a Baltimore based artist and educator working with old and new forms of electronic media. Nohe utilises the sounds of a place in order to create a tangible piece of work. He is currently an Associate Professor of Visual Arts at University of Maryland, Baltimore County, as well as Adjunct Professor at La Trobe University, in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and is often a guest lecturer. Some of his more resent works are aimed at creating a complete environment for the participant to experience.

In his project ‘142 Ways to mark the time’ (2004/2005) Nohe worked in a closed prison to recreate the sounds prisoners would hear on a day to day bases. In Eastern state penitentiary, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania prisoners were hooded while being transported around the prison, sound was the only sense. Nohe recorded sounds from around the prison, i.e the creaking of hinges and walking, and played the resulting tracks through hidden speakers in the cells.

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Found HERE

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Found HERE

Tim Knowles

Tim Knowles is an artist that creates by allowing external forces to form the work, in his projects he harnesses the natural elements to produce beautiful and whimsical artwork. In his project full moon reflections Knowles captures the image of a full moon reflected on water. He photographes every full moon during 2005, using long exposure to capture the fluid, phosphorescent images.  

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Found HERE… 

In his project ‘Nightwalks’ Knowles again uses long exposure to capture his journey away from the camera carrying a high powered torch. Medium Format Film 1.5 m by 1.2m. The walks are each for an hour, following a natural pathway or compass bearing.The images show the path he took as a stream of light stretching across the valleys and hills into the pitch black night. 

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Found HERE

 

 

 

 

Psychogeography

Is the concept of flexible space, it involves the emotional/psychological connotations of a space to the different people who use it. Its main technique is Dérive.

“The dérive, or drift, was defined by the situationists as the ‘technique of locomotion without a goal’, in which ‘one or more persons during a certain period drop their usual motives for movement and action, their relations, their work and leisure activities, and let themselves be drawn by the attractions of the terrain and the encounters they find there’. The dérive acted as something of a model for the ‘playful creation’ of all human relationships… The sudden change of ambiance in a street within the space of a few meters; the evident division of a city into zones of distinct psychic atmospheres; the path of least resistance which is automatically followed in aimless strolls (and which has no relation to the physical contour of the ground); the appealing or repelling character of certain places – all this seems to be neglected.”

Guy Debord, ‘ Introduction to a Critique of Urban Geography

I believe that Dérive is one of the greatest attractions of Melbourne. Melbourne is a city of lane-ways, filled with hidden jems from restaurants and cafe’s to record stores and graffiti murals. As you walk through Melbourne, whether the route and destination is known or not, you still feel as though you are ‘drifting’ and every new thing you discover is a wonderful treasure. In Melbourne you are truly “drawn by the attractions of the terrain and the encounters they find there”.

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Found here

Wanderer

During the weeks we studied space I decided to do one of the projects in Melbourne CBD, I chose to follow the colour purple for an hour. I chose this colour because it is seen more in clothing than on buildings  or cars, and I wanted to insinuate myself into snippets of other peoples routines. I started in front of Town Hall and from there followed a woman wearing a purple shirt up Swanston st to Little Bourke st and then lost her, I waited for the next bit of purple to follow, and so on, for exactly one hour. Below are the pictures I took along the way. 

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Sounds of Melbourne

After the Sound Project I have been more conscious of the sounds that surround us and how they change. From the suburb to the city ambient noise is completely different. In the suburbs early morning sounds consist of birds, wind, rain, and the occasional car. While in the city centre an early morning consists of trains, trams, cars, street cleaners, buses, and people rushing to work. I decided to record sound while wandering around in the CBD, whenever I heard an interesting sound I would record it and then wander onwards to the next. The track below consists of the different sounds I heard over an hour.

Atmosphere Project

Ruth Lyon and Chloe Vincent – Atmosphere Project

Ruth Lyon – Video

The idea for our project came from ‘Outside’. Outside of humanity, what exactly defines humanity and separates us from other animals. Is it that we are not bound wholly by our instincts, that we can do other than eat, play, sleep, and copulate. Our ability to reason is what sets us apart, but at what cost? ‘Humanity’ is capable of the worst atrocities, Genocide, War, Famine, Abuse. There is such a chasm between peoples good intentions and reality, and that is what we wanted to show in this project. The juxtapose of “Intent Vs Reaction”. In the second ‘space’ lecture there was a segment on ‘Voyager‘- The Interstellar Mission. It seemed to be the epitome of good intent, the golden record on board was a beautiful compilation of images, sounds, and directions to our planet for any life forms that may come across it. I took this as our “Intent” section and then found images of the darker side of humanity. The riots, violent crime, war, and bigotry that is so prevalent in our little world, these images made up the “Reaction” section. Interspersed between the images was our message, using a black background and white font.

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After searching for a program that would allow me the freedom to make what I envisioned I eventually settled on Adobe Premiere Pro CC, and downloaded the trail version. For such a powerful program it is relatively easy to use and was soon able to start editing together the video. I decided to make it similar to the classic ‘brainwash’ videos, with flashing images and a subliminal message. Using the zoom tool (Z) and selection tool (V) I was able to shorten the duration of each image.

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Once the images were in the order I wanted, voyager images dispersed between the more violent, and played for the correct duration I contacted Chloe for the audio segment of the project.

Chloe sent me her rough version of the audio and after watching the video and listening to the audio we worked together to fit the two together. Chloe used Audible to create and edit the track and then converted it to a format compatible with Adobe Premium Pro CC.

We had some problems finding a room for the presentation, the room was not what we had hoped for, and so we had to adjust how we presented the project. We decided to treat the presentation like a first day seminar for new government employees, and to inject a little humour. The room was dark, the only light from the projector, we placed bleach and ammonia around the room. At the front of the room we had a corpse laying directly in front of the screen with a white sheet over it and a toe tag on the exposed feet. At the end of the seminar, run by an overworked government employee, each attendee was given a survey. (Survey51) In keeping with the idea of abnormal as ordinary workplace, our take on area 51, it contained questions that were seemingly bizarre but strangely sinister.

Unfortunately the version below was slightly altered when uploaded to YouTube, and I was unable to add the video to the blog any other way…

 

Sound Project

 

The colour I chose for my Sound Project is one that is closely linked with my childhood in QLD, the colour of tropical storm clouds. I can only, inelegantly, describe it as varying shades of purple/greys. These storms, and this colour, hold some of the best memories of my childhood. You can hear a really big storm well before it hits. First there is the still, humid heat and strange tint of colour to the sky, ether a pale purple or green. Then echoing thunder that gradually grows into sharp, deafening claps of sound you can feel throughout your entire body. The sky fills with broiling banks of purple/grey storm clouds, everything seems to pause, and then torrential rain. This rain doesn’t slowly build, if you are outside you will be soaked in a moment.

 

I would spend hours curled up next to my window reading to the sound of rain and hail hitting the panes. Or piled with my siblings on my Mum’s bed, listening to her read aloud.

 

I decided to create a history of these times in my sound project. Re-creating the sounds of the storms and a timeline of my reading from my childhood to the present day. As the piece progresses the books become more mature, beginning with Beatrix Potters “Squirrel Nutkin” gradually working up to Jennet Wintersons “Oranges are not the only Fruit” and similar. I wanted the piece to have a similar feeling to a tropical storm. Erratic and building to a crescendo of sound. The rain, thunder, and readings mix until the ear strains to pick out one from the others. This is similar to the cacophony of sounds in a tropical storm, the wind, rain, thunder, hail, and swaying of trees combine into a ‘tropical symphony’. (One I find infinitely more enjoyable that “Bolívar”)

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Original photo – Courier Mail

I started the project using Audacity but was unable to achieve the layering that I wanted in the finished track. I recorded all of the spoken audio using Audacity with my Sampson USB Microphone. The recording of “Squirrel Nutkin” is from an old record “Tales of Beatrix Potter told by Wendy Craig” from AXIS Records.

ImageAfter recording the readings in Audacity I used the ‘Export’ function to convert into .aiff files, which are compatible with GarageBand.

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By switching over to GarageBand to mix the track I was able to create the layers I needed. 

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At first I had trouble controlling the sound level in the different layers, the volume would randomly fluctuate between the audio layers. I was able to control that by using the individual ‘Track Volume’ controls on each layer. 

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 After I finished mixing the track I used the ‘Share podcast to iTunes…’ option that is available in the ‘Share’ menu. This converted the GarageBand file into an MP3, which I then uploaded onto SoundCloud. 

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The thunder at the start of the track was found here.

The rain and thunder heard throughout the track is from here –