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ARCTIC CORRESPONDENCES

Auroa Borealis - Sonification of data recorded with VLF radio
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This residency is documented as a day-by-day journal on Bioartica's blog. 

 

In recent years, the concept of atmosphere has become more and more present for scholars of different academic disciplines in the humanities and arts. Questions regarding how they are staged, their lasting effect on the lives of people ranging from the individual to the collective, and their ontological status; are some of the discussions that have risen. Although they are indeterminate, ambiguous, and difficult to grasp, it cannot be overlooked that atmospheres play an essential role in the shaping of the social and the political.

 

The concept of atmosphere was my main line of inquiry for four years. A notion I researched in an artistic residency in Ars Bioartica in Kilpisjärvi, Finland.

 

Atmospheres surpass the traditional dichotomy of the subject and object, since they are not inherent to the existence of things; but rather the in-between that emerges from their co-presence. In the words of the German philosopher Gernot Böhme, ecstasies are how something goes forth from itself or the way something makes its presence perceptible. The atmosphere, therefore, emerges as an inseparable whole within a specific time-space.

 

The current importance of staging atmospheres in artistic practices today may lead to further exploration of perception and embodied experience through contemporary art. This may take place using empathy through emotions triggered in the encounter with the artwork.

 

I intended to produce a soundscape in coproduction with the environment with a Korg MS 20 mini analog synthesizer, field recordings, and a DIY Whistler Radio Cristian Delgado helped me build. I left the radio in the environment at least one kilometer away from anything that could interfere with or contaminate the reception of low-frequency waves of the Aurora Borealis.

 

The focus of this practice-based research was to explore the in-between (atmosphere) concept by centering the attention on the ecstasies of the environment, as gestures, as well as my perception and experience, instead of the objective being an analysis of what the Whistler Radio could collect. Cristian then designed a program to transform the low-frequency waves recorded in text code to something I could use in Ableton Live to produce the soundscape.

Kilpisjärvi, Finland 2015. Finnish Society of Bioart.

  

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