Kalligraphie (2007)

This work was composed for an exhibition produced by Manfred May in the Galerie im Bürgerhaus, Zella-Mehlis 2007. The exhibition fathoms the exciting contrast between object installation and drawing (Manfred May), photography (Ingrid Bahß) and sound installation (Hanns Holger Rutz).

The piece deals with the notion of “silence”, “drawing / delineation”, “calligraphy”. The visitor is sitting on a windowsill between glass plates on which red transducers have been placed. The plates surround the head like planets. They act as sound radiating bodies.

Description in terms of a rule based system

  • a number N of glass plates are vertically mounted on consoles to the left and to the right of a hearing position (N = 8) ; a red transducer bears on each plate. The transducers are placed slightly excentric in an organic way, in order to produce different resonances / dampings.
  • a video camera is used to detect the presence of a visitor ; this results in two situations S1 (absence) and S2 (presence).
  • in S1, a randomly filtered impulse pattern is sent to the transducers, ressembling the pitching of light rain drops ;in S2, different sound layers are chosen and combined, which are spatially diffused through the transducers.
  • every half an hour, a third algorithm takes over. A sequence of articulations taken from Qi-Gong balls is played, with relative durations and spectral colour undergoing random variation.
  • in the transition from S1 to S2, the sound material of S2 is percolated from the “rain” with the help of a declining modulation with filtered impulses. The impulse-rain itself changes its colour towards thick heavy drops whose frequency decreases until the drops ebb away ; in the transition from S2 to S1, the opposite process is applied.
  • the particular sound layers are: swift birds, eating apples, sanding acrylic glass, empty field in Zeven, cicadas, rhizom. at minimum two, at maximum four layers are heards simultaneously. For every layer, a minimum and maximum duration of appearance has been specified. Rhizom contains speech recordings with short sentence fragments from Deleuze/Guattari «Rhizom». Thereby, all words are interlinked in a dictionary of synonyms, for example “der Baum ist Filiation” (the tree is filiation)—”der Baum braucht das Verb ‘sein’” (the tree imposes the verb ‘to be’), or “wir sprechen nur noch von Mannigfaltigkeiten, Linien, Schichten” (all we talk about are multiplicities, lines, strata)—”man weiß noch nicht, wohin diese Mannigfaltigkeit führt” (we don’t know yet what the multiple entails)—”jedes Rhizom enthält Segmentierungslinien” (every rhizome contains lines of segmentarity), etc. Each fragment contains up to eight words which are distributed sequentially onto the transducers. Successive fragments are chosen from connections in the dictionary of synonyms, whereby the synonym itselfs is repeated on the same glass plate.

Kalligraphie (room recording; use headphones)