Akrostichon

7-channel piece, duration 65”.

This piece was made in the honour of Folkmar Hein, who was celebrating his 65th birthday in 2009 and who had led the Electronic Studio of the TU Berlin for 34 years.

The idea was very simple (but proved very difficult to realize): With a little wink to the idea of “Synthrumentation” of Klarenz Barlow who I had recently met, I was imagining an aural equivalent to what is visually known as a “photo-mosaic”—to semi-automatically compose a piece with sounds that are arranged in a way so that the sonagramme resembles a given template.

After desperately trying all different kinds of cross-correlation and convolution approaches, I finally came up with a new algorithm I implemented in FScape. Exploring all kinds of different settings for my “audio mosaic” process, and using different source sound materials, I synthesized the seven letters of Folkmar’s name (in different art-nouveau typefaces). The laborious task was to arrive at a piece that was at the same time sonically striking while retaining the sonagraphic concept.