MSHR - Nested Scapes Series

The basic structure of the works in this series is: a generative/interactive computer music system inside a virtual reality environment, inside of a physical installation.

The audio in the room consists of a multi-channel generative system of sonic "voices" (generative audio sources). These voices are audible to everyone inside of the installation and they influence the light environment within the physical installation, but they can only be interacted with by the person wearing the VR headset. The VR user traverses a virtual environment that is overlaid on the physical one, which is marked by a custom printed vinyl floor tapestry that is usually around 5m x 5m. By walking through highlighted areas in the virtual and physical space, the VR user triggers randomizations in all the parameters affecting the sound of the "voice" corresponding with that area. Through this interaction, the VR user becomes the performer of the cybernetic musical composition, and the other visitors in the room become an audience to a performance of modulating the shifting sonic architecture of the installation.

The tapestries on the walls and floor are formalized flow charts that act as graphic scores for various iterations of the generative musical system playing in the room. The shapes in these diagrams each represent elements in the system such as the visitors, computers, triggers, voices and speakers, while the lines connecting them represent causal relationships and signal flow.

Visually speaking, the aesthetic within the virtual space is based in our digital sculptural practice, incorporating sculptural forms of different scales that also may be read as 3D abstractions of the systems at work in the installation.

We have made seven iterations of this piece, so far. Each version uses the same basic system and layout but has unique content and title.

Integrated Scape Transducer, PS1 MoMA, NYC, 2017

Integrated Scape Transducer, Ben Russell's Hallucinations Festival, Documenta 14, Greek Film Archive, Athens

Source Fold Compound Generator, Fotomuseum Winterthur, Winterthur

Source Fold Compositor, The Anderson Gallery, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond

Source Fold Compositor, Boston Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Source Fold Compositor, Fenko Catalysis Chamber + Double-Grass, Taipei

Module Braid, National Arts Festival, Grahamstown, South Africa