Tokyo Circle - Abstract
This installation is scheduled to be shown at the ICC Intercommunication Center (www.ntticc.or.jp/index_e.html), Tokyo, Japan from January 28th - March 12th, 2000, in a Sound Art exhibition.
Tokyo Circle is based on the older project called Circle. Circle version 1 was an installation in which acoustic feedbacks that occurred between speakers arranged in a circular steel frame around the perfomer and the performer's microphones were "played". In version 1.1 the movements of the hands were recorded with a videocamera and displayed behind or above the installation to emphasize the connections between movement and sound.
Making feedbacks with the described setup can be interpreted as the act of making audible an energy potential in the installation's space.
Tokyo Circle allows for modulating a potential acoustic energy field -a virtual acoustic space- inside (or virtually overlapping) the exhibition room. The sound relates to the symbolic meanings of the circle. The shape of the acoustic space relates to the position of the performing spectator. Via sensors the spectators' movements inside the circle are tracked to control the different sounds audible on the circle's multichannel speaker system.
The symbol of the circle has been used in ideographic writings in all cultures for several thousands of years and is a very powerful symbol. It can signify many different things. The dot, or filled circle denotes something important, puts focus onto it. The filled and the empty circle are symbols for the sun, less often the moon, also for spirit in a creative sense, as opposed to matter (in astrology), and all possibilities. All these significances have in common a notion of energy. The special power of the circle lies in its quality of unity and isolation (isolating the inside from the outside). The space that is enclosed by the circle constitutes an own powerful sphere, in which mythical/magical and also creative actions are performed.
Check out a survey of symbols by the Estonian National Museum.
In the catalogue for the Sound Art exhibition at the ICC there will be a CD track called Tokyo Circle, symbol survey.
Hardware development of the installation by Thomas Baumgart, software development by Stefan Franke.
M. Behrens would like to express thanks to the INM-Institut für Neue Medien, Frankfurt, Germany.