Trans:space

Archive for July, 2013

TRANS:SPACE – translating space

Friday, July 26th, 2013

Thanks to Arts Council South East support, 3 artists, a cognitive scientist & a lighting designer will converse & collaborate, face to face and via this blog, around the question: ” How do we perceive our environment through sound & how can we interpret that for an audience?”

TRANS:SPACE was conceived by Jane Pitt as a project to collaboratively research & explore the use of analogue and digital interfaces to creatively translate & transform our experience of public space initially through sound &  movement eventually  including light & image.

Our creative and scientific research phase aims to investigate perception and to develop a methodology for creating multi-platform multi-sensory site-responsive installations.

The project team are Jane Pitt a multi-disciplinary artist from a visual and live arts background with a particular interest in sound & vocalised soundings of places; Michael J. Proulx, PhD Senior Lecturer [Associate Professor] in Psychology University of Bath & Visiting Senior Lecturer in Multimedia and Vision Electronic Engineering and Computer Science Queen Mary University of London; Sam Randhawa a classically trained Indian Musician who also produces contemporary music;  Mike Snarr a Lighting Designer/project digital support & Sian Thomas a percussive dancer, choreographer and scenographer of small to large scale outdoor performance.

To enhance our investigation an additional digital tool will inform our thoughts and research, The vOICe, a visual to auditory sensory substitution device developed for blind users, enables the user to experience a complex sonified translation of a digital image of their immediate surroundings via a portable set-up of head mounted camera, headphones & PC notebook.  Developed in Holland by Dr Peter Meijer and used by Michael J.Proulx in his research on cross modal sensory perception, like any structured new language it requires training to become  fluent, for longer term users it is second nature to process the structured language of volume (brighter = louder) and pitch (= height).  Find it for yourselves at: www.seeingwithsound.com.

Interestingly the auditory input from the device has been found to activate the visual cortex while in use.  This multi-sensory processing, combined with the concept of translating the unseen into the ‘seen’ through sound, were Jane’s motivation for initiating the project.