This gallery contains 3 photos.

This is the final project that’s going to be exhibited. I’m bringing in the expertise of Daniele Hopkins, as the idea is an amalgamation of concepts we’ve been working with, and discussions of thoughts that were generated through this residency (particularly surrounding the second sound adventure). The piece is called Hive. Essentially, we’re building a [...]

Framed Ideas in Space (Jacqui Arntfield)by: EQUΔLΔTERΔL

Pertinent question, everyone (excluding anyone that already has or alternatively doesn’t need a method): what is the ideal formula for or approach to making art for a thematic exhibition? A question as broad as it is precarious, no doubt. And a viable antecedent to the rehashing of other worse inquiries including and limited to defining what art is. Also, a potential precursor to the sort of abject and ineffectual introspection that can detract from and obscure the very issue which initiated the analysis. So, with that in mind, let’s explore the possibilities!

And let’s do that by translating them into equations loosely inspired by propositional calculus. This is an easy way to be both reductive and convoluted – an integral part of any artistic practice and therefore a comfortable jumping off point.

But before we begin interrogating our methodology, let us first clearly establish our goal and some of the more clinical and accessible components intrinsic to achieving that goal. These components are: ideas, framework, and space. The goal is to manifest an idea in a space in a way that is true to the original immaterial concept, the characteristics of the location, and the curatorial vision of the exhibition. And to do so in the most efficient and effective way possible. Sounds simple. Let’s try:

A Legend

F: framework
I : idea(s)
S : space
: and
: or
→ : then
: therefore
: there exists

Some Possible Approaches

1. Sequential Generation

F ∧  S → I
∴ I in F ∧ S

With Sequential Generation, we see the simple and fluid conjunction of our outlined components. First we import the specifics of the framework and location of the exhibition, then we interpret them cooperatively to create a successive idea. This method is equal parts straightforward, ideal and unrealistic.

2. Adaptation

(F ∴ I) ∧ S → F ∧ S +/- elements of I
∴ adequately modified I in F ∧ S

This one looks pretty complicated on the outset but it’s probably more familiar than you realize. Adaptation is when you internalize a curatorial vision and allow it to guide your perception of yourself and your environment and subsequently produce an idea which reflects the directed reevaluation. Then you encounter the space in which you will eventually materialize that reevaluation and are forced to examine plausibility of your idea in this particular physical context. Or whether your idea for art making ever had any form outside of a notional exposition on the subject which you emphatically wrote to yourself in your head.
This method works best  probably only works if you are a member of a collective.

3. Annotation

∃I ∧ ∃S → ∃(I in S)
∴ clever artist statement

Here is a direct linguistic translation of this method in case you are too lazy to refer back to the legend: If there exists an idea and there exists a space then there exists an idea in space. It takes a special kind of narcissist to exact this neglectful form of art making so be careful that you fit that qualification before you try this one at wherever (JK! That was didactic. We’re all at least latently narcissistic/Do You). In the case of Annotation, your idea was already solidified pre-F∧S so the majority of the workload will be centered around the justification of the piece’s presence in the physical and conceptual environment. This method is best executed with the aid of a thesaurus.

There is none. Above are only three out of infinity possible, mutable options for art making and this anxious exercise was designed to be reflective, not prescriptive. Systems are for engineers. Our only wrong answer is a definite one.

Headphones Projectby: Labspace and TIMEANDDESIRE

[The following is a series of messy thoughts, mock-ups, photos and ideas-in-progress for a collaboration between TIMEANDDESIRE & Labspace Studio.]

urban noise/ white noise/ auditory information/ private vs. public

Some concepts/questions we discussed in previous meetings…
-Is eavesdropping a byproduct of living in a city?
-Is the act of eavesdropping subversive?
-What constitutes public & private auditory information?
-Do people take for granted their “auditory” footprint?
-Do snippets of conversations intrigue, disgruntle or amuse the passers by?
-When is the utterances of what we say— for us, for our friends in conversation, or to be intentionally overheard?

(How do we manifest this project, both site-specifically and in a gallery context?)

-Fabricate covert eavesdropping headphones to record external auditory information
-Visit various sites in the Queen West Triangle and use these covert tools to collect auditory data
-Re-frame this data in installation form in a gallery context

Tools to build headphone prototypes…
Old headphones, lapel mics, screw gun, audio adapters, audio software

Ideas for gallery installation…
(POD idea)
Free-standing structure divided into four sections
-4 separate immersive environments w/ directional speaker
-each section mimics an eavesdropping location in the QW area (i.e. park, restaurant, dentist office, etc)

(Sound booth idea w/ interactive headphones)
-Distribute eavesdropping headphones at gallery for people to use and collect data on site
-Stream data from sound booth

Where we’re at…

We’re currently working through all our above ideas. As it stands, we have two functioning headphones. We’ll be collecting our preliminary data/ covertly eavesdropping this Saturday.

Stay tuned for the results…







Calls to Action (Emily DiCarlo)by: EQUΔLΔTERΔL

The more I think about what has led me here, the clearer it becomes. The tiny recorded escalator voice, from our second residency outing, has left a lasting impression on me. I keep reflecting on the directive voice and it’s the urgency for listeners to take heed of it’s instructions. The expectation of the listener is to act in accordance with the ask.

Sometimes though, these call-to-actions are void of language entirely. Rather, certain sounds like a recess bell, a fire alarm or a customer service desk bell, act as signifiers for language. We are conditioned to respond in a variety of ways depending on the type and tone of the bell we hear. Categorically, the bell seems to be the most widely used sound for call-to-actions and this is what I wish to explore further.

Recently, the fire alarm went off at my place of work and we were forced like ants to descend down the stairwell from the 10th floor. Everyone knew what the fire alarm bell meant and what actions to take in response.

Sound Printsby: Scott

I forgot to write a post for Adventure #3 because I was busy getting a start on my project. Perhaps I’ll write an Adventure #3 post after this one, but for now I want to start by describing the project that Sheraz and I are working on.

Sound Print Sample #1

As I mentioned in my Sound Maps post, I have chatted with Ryerson’s SMART Lab about their sound mapping project. Sheraz joined me in our second meeting because he know GIS stuff and has a better grasp on the math behind their work than I do. But firs, let me explain the basics of our idea.

The SMART lab has over 1,000 recordings from all round the City of Toronto and they have software that can analyze it for different kinds of data. They have done some studies with this data and have focused on three kinds of information that will predict whether a particular sound will create a stressful sonic environment. The three things they look at are spectral irregularity, pulse clarity, and RMS.

Sound Print Sample #2

RMS is the easiest to understand. It is, essentially, loudness; the higher the RMS the louder the sound. Pulse clarity is pretty straight forward too. The higher the pulse clarity value, the more rhythmic the sound. Finally, spectral irregularity indicates what the sound looks like when mapped across the sound spectrum. The easiest way I found to understand this is to compare white noise, which has a flat line across the spectrum (check out for a great example–a life-saver for tinnitus sufferers) to the erratic noise of a construction site, for example. A high spectral irregularity means it is difficult, or impossible, to plot the sound in a nice, straight line on the sound spectrum. Or, this is the difference between graphing a smooth line and a jagged line with lots of peaks. Again, I don’t understand math well enough to really explain this.

So the basic idea is to take these three bits of information and map them on to hue, saturation, and value (brightness) of the pixels in an image. We’re creating a bit of a tenuous relationship between sound and colour values, but the idea is to create images that present the meaning of the data and get people interested and engaged with the sound map.

So far the plan looks something like this: Spectral Irregularity will be mapped to hue using random Gaussian numbers, pulse clarity will be mapped to saturation, and RMS will be mapped to brightness. We still need to figure out some of the math and we also need to figure out some of the technicalities behind processing over 1,000 images.

So far Sheraz and I have been working on a Processing sketch that does some of the math we want. Ideally, we’d have an interactive website with a heat map of Toronto and the user would be able to “walk” through the manipulated images using Street View. I think there are some restrictions on how Street View is used, though, so I think I’ll be difficult to make this work. Right now I’m working on grabbing a static street view image from each location.

The New Neighbourhoodby: Adam

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Formulating Ideasby: Aria

Walking around Queen West I came across a quaint building side with four balconies stacked on top of one another all connected by a fire escape. Immediately the idea of having three vignettes; one happening on each level, flashed across my mind and stuck. Using the imagery of stacking to connect to age I want to interview a group of children, 20-somethings and 60+ persons asking them to share a memory that has a specific sound connected to it. I will create three dances, using three dancers, one on each level,  that embody the memories while also playing a composed piece of music that incorporates the specific sound they talked about as well as spoken word from their interviews.

This is an example of an interview and the picture of the potential location.