SCANZ 2013: Under the icecap

Authors: Nigel Helyer and Mary-Ann Lea

Abstract

Under the IceCap is one of a series of creative outcomes resulting from the Bio_Logging Art + Science project at the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies at the University of Tasmania.

Bio_Logging is a collaboration between Artist Dr. Nigel Helyer and Marine Scientist Dr. Mary-Ann Lea (IMAS) which seeks to link scientific bio-logging data collection and GIS techniques with the Artist’s interests in interactive acoustic cartography and the development of AudioPortraits that extend the conceptual and intuitive grasp of otherwise extremely abstract data. http://www.sonicobjects.com/index.php/projects/more/bio_logging/

In the current phase of our work we are visualising and sonifying complex bio-logging data collected by Elephant Seals on their deep dives under the Antarctic Ice shelves (to depths of 2000 m) and their long Southern Ocean transits (over thousands of kilometers).  We are exploring novel ways to make these data-sets palpable, by manifesting them as a series of experimental music concerts.  Each concert in the series is designed to test the hypothesis that musical training is particularly well adapted to negotiate complex streams of data unfolding in realtime.  We are experimenting with ways for musicians to respond to data-generated 3D mappings, visual scores and direct data sonifications and we are listening for the potential resonances and confluences that bridge the data and the sonic response.

This presentation summarises the first concert, Vox on the Rox (April 2012) at the Conservatorium of Music (Hobart) which will be followed shortly by Dots on the Rox (August 2012, to be presented as part of Australian National Science Week).

 

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