electroacoustics; physical computing; creative coding; experimental practices and performance with attention to digitally mediated experiences
PhD, Electroacoustic Composition, Sonic Arts Research Centre, Queen's University Belfast
MA, Music Technology, University of Limerick
BMusEd, Southwestern University
sonic arts, networked performance, digital tool building, installation, live electronics, happenings
Generative and experimental approaches to formulating experience
When I was young I would build elaborate tents inside my room with tunnels leading to separate spaces for sleeping, drawing, and reading. My tent even had a phone, a tiny black and white television, and my father’s shortwave radio receiver – the crown jewel. In the darkof night, huddled in bedsheet walls, I tuned into the world: the BBC, south American dance parties, and those mysterious frequencies that played revolutionary music followed by solemn foreign statements. In this pre-Internet time, I was surfing the world, and it was an impromptu performance: my left hand adjusting the antennae, my right cramping as I held the tuning knob in just the right place. The experience was physical, aleatory, and intimate.
In my creative practice I continue to return to these themes of intimate encounters, physical connections, and chance processes. My sound art works are constructed either around the human voice or contact microphone recordings – intimate noises arising from within the body or sounds only heard by pressing close to the object. In my telematic practice, I interconnect spaces, designing systems for artists to project themselves into remote stages and deploy sensor arrays to collect ambient activity and transmit it back to a local venue for sonification/visualization. Chance operations come into play in my generative practices as natural language processors rewrite texts and re-contextualize images, creating unique, ephemeral events.
My process is experimental, I am poking around a bit and I do not have a preconceived notion of what the outcome of my exploration will be. To paraphrase Cage, I am engaging in these practices precisely to see what is possible and am curious to discover what will happen. As I critique my progress, I wish to take on the role of observer as well as instigator, and by stepping away from the position of creator, I can assess if the work activates the audience as John Dewey describes in this treatise Art as Experience – specifically, ensuring that in viewing the work, the audience experiences its processes and outcomes in the same way I did during the creative process.