Wednesday, April 13, 2011

"I want to live where soul meets body" -Death Cab For Cutie

Hello All,
As this is where all of my works in progress come to live (and sometimes die), I would like to welcome a new work in progress to the family: Contain and Retain.

Contain and Retain is a piece about connections between the body and soul. Sound is used as a tool to transcend the frame of the body and echo throughout the soul. The soul, however, is also a frame. Though usually in a transformative state, the soul is possible to catch (if you're quick on your feet) which is why soul sound is framed in a similar vessel that that of body sound.

Both entities are constantly changing which is why I intend to make many more sound journeys to travel and weave themselves in and out of these frames. It is up to the viewer to determine which one is "contain" and which is "retain". (I won't tell you what I think, but please leave me a comment telling me which you think is which!)

{These photos were taken before the vessels were fired}

I started out writing pages of note, and trying to create diagrams for how to pass sound from one ear to the other, making it seem as though sound was weaving through the mind rather than simply playing out of two unrelated ear phones. Sound, after all, consists of waves, and waves have the ability to mesh and interact. Think about being at a carnival. You hear the voices of children, popcorn popping, roller coasters clicking as they inch up the track, and cheerful music blaring over a loud speaker. Our brains allow us to pick out each of these sounds individually, but if you relax your mind and just allow the sound to blend, it is one sound coming together through different waves of sound.
In order to create "Contain and Retain" I first experimented with passing the sound from ear to ear, as opposed to from one vessel to another as in the final piece. Originally the final piece was also going to be made for headphones, hence the promo below. But it sort of took on a life of its own. Don't you love when that happens? [Ps. as usual, you will need headphones!]


First Experiment:

After doing this experiment I began to wonder about the properties of sound. It started to make sense to me how sound is so easily manipulated by the mind. The mind is attached to the ears, after all. I wondered: how can I manipulate sound outside of the body, or in fact transcend the capacities of the body. And so "Contain and Retain" was born. I researched the physics of sound and echo, and used the materials themselves to manipulate the sound. In other words, the structure of the body sculpture produces a muffled, subdued sound, whereas the structure of the soul creates an ethereal echo. The two play in time with each other, bonding them as a single piece. However, both their shape and sound quality are tremendously different. I will try to get a video of the interaction, because the sound alone won't do it justice. But here it is anyways:


There are actually two pieces, one after the other. The idea is that I could keep adding more pieces as my perception of body and soul and their relationship, changes over time.

I hope you enjoyed. Sorry about the total failure of regular blog posting this semester, but now that it's summer check back in for more!

If you made it through this entire post, I am quite impressed and even more flattered!
Again, questions, feedback, and ideas are greatly appreciated!


Thursday, January 27, 2011

"It wasn't because I didn't know enough. I just knew too much. Does that make me crazy?" -Gnarls Barkley

Okay, Okay! I'm back.
I've been putting this off for far too long, and have clearly been breaking one of my first resolutions. I will hopefully (fingers crossed) be putting stuff up more regularly. However, since my art classes are not the type that have me turning out tons of work this semester, a lot of my writing will be about progress, ideas, and maybe even a little inspiration.

Exciting news! I am having a couple giveaways soon for custom-made shoes! They are being hosted by two adorable bloggers. The first is by Diana at Express-O who blogs about fashion, food, and anything else she finds fascinating. Check her out if you like neat stuff, and also to enter the giveaway! Also, if you haven't already seen, my etsy site is officially up, and I should be posting more shoes soon!

One downside of art school is not always getting to put things quite where you want them, and sometimes only getting to have them running for a few hours. This is especially true for installation work, and it's mainly a bummer because you put so much darn time into it!

My final project for CFC II (the reason I started this blog in the first place) was kind of my dream project. It explored the idea of private space, and re-contextualized it by placing a private home environment into a public "gallery" setting. We naturally have certain expectations, certain preconceptions of the people we meet, but very rarely have a grasp on what they might actually be like in the privacy of their own homes. The piece juxtaposes two very conflicting but equally personal things, religious observance and domestic abuse, to show the dynamic nature of human behavior in intimate settings.

The piece was comprised of a dining room set-up and an arm chair set-up to represent two different rooms in a home. A scene plays out between the two sets via speakers hidden inside each. The atmosphere and pace created by the piece is meant to enable the viewer to visualize the scene. At the end of the scene the installation becomes interactive. One has to physically put themselves in the space to hear the remainder of the piece. It will be especially difficult to feel the intimacy I intended for the viewer to experience by simply listening to the work, but unfortunately it is the best way I could think of to document. If anyone has other suggestions, please let me know! Oh, and listen with headphones! It won't work otherwise.

Finally, you may have noticed the "listen now" buttons on top of each post. This is my new feature, and I love it! You can download mp3s of my entries and even subscribe to my podcast if you'd like. I dunno, I thought it was super cool (and it's free!)

That's all for now.
It's good to be back.

ps. German chocolate is where it's at.

Monday, January 3, 2011

"I take my last chance and I'm home again" -Umphrey's Mcgee

Clearly I have not been great about keeping up with this blog, and my friend Rachel's witty blog has inspired me to create a new years resolution list. So, here goes.

1. Post more often, and post in-progress work
2. Post all finished work worth showing
3. Get ahead of the game, procrastinate less
4. Work out at least three times a week
5. Keep in touch with out-of-town friends more often
6. Make more time for friends at school, specifically ones I have barely seen this year
7. Do well in all of my classes
8. Become an expert at Audacity and Final Cut Express
9. Get better at Photoshop and Motion
10. Learn a new program
11. Go to more concerts
12. Do something spontaneous at least once a month
13. Lead Shalva services without getting nervous
14. Learn a new medium
15. Be more intuitive
16. Get a job
17. Travel somewhere new at least once
18. Make a serious attempt at study abroad
19. Get a new bedspread and sheets
20. Become proficient in music theory and sight singing
21. Read at least 3 non-school-related books
22. Volunteer more often
23. Cook more, go out less
24. Cut back on mindless web-browsing
25. Send snail mail at least once a month
26. Write more
27. Host at least one oneg and five dinners
28. Take time to figure out what will make me happiest

There are definitely some more, but as I am already breaking #3, I'm going to stop now and reserve the right to add more later.
Happy New Year everyone!
Thanks for reading!