Hunting a Snark? | Rudi Knoops

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exploring uncharted terrain on the New Media map (after Lewis Carroll)

Speculum Musurgica

My new installation Speculum Musurgica had its première a few days ago, August 18 2015, and is exhibited in Antwerp Cathedral till November 22, 2015.

Speculum Musurgica, 2015 - detail

I made this new installation for an exhibition on Petrus Alamire, with as content two seven-voice compositions from Petrus Alamire’s sixteenth century music manuscripts: the motet Memorare Mater Christi of Matthaeus Pipelare, and the anonymous chanson Proch Dolor, an elegy on the death of Emperor Maximilian, performed by Paul Van Nevel and the Huelgas Ensemble.

The heptagonal media installation Speculum Musurgica consists of ingenious mirror structures and sound projections that invite visitors to take a physical walk through the rich polyphonic texture of the music.
In a spatialized setting, each of the seven singers is projected individually, for both sound and vision. In the centre of the installation the multiple auditory layers coalesce into a surround sound. On the other hand a more analytic listening mode is possible by physically approaching one of the performers. For the visual layers I use the technique of cylindrical anamorphosis: a distorted image can be observed in its reconstituted form through reflection in a cylindrical mirror. Observing one single anamorphosis brings the visitor closer to the projected image (and sound) of one individual musical performer and amplifies the analytical listening mode. The multiple use of anamorphosis however forces the visitor to make choices and invites to spatially and physically explore and experience the polyphonic texture of the music. In this multi-layered universe, visitors choose for themselves which individual musical lines to emphasize. They go in search of interesting perspectives – whether auditory, visual or a combination of the two – and create their own individual experience of the polyphonic music performed.

Speculum Musurgica is part of my practice-based PhD in media arts, wherein I focus on the appropriation of cylindrical anamorphosis. Using a media archaeology inspired methodology of short-circuiting past and present, I gauge the affordances of this seemingly obsolete seventeenth century media technology and its significance for how we engage with the techno aesthetics of contemporary society.

To wet your appetite: Belgian television had a newsitem on the exhibition & the Laus Polophoniae music festival – also with Petrus Alamire as theme this year – in which my new installation Speculum Musurgica features prominently: http://deredactie.be/cm/vrtnieuws/videozone/programmas/journaal/2.40618?playlist=7.39644&video=1.2418561#

 

DIORAMATIZED #02 @ festival SURROUND!

The festival SURROUND! is a mix of concerts and installations where the listener is surrounded by sound and becomes part of the musical interaction.
From Wednesday November 7 till Sunday November 11 @ Concertgebouw Brugge.

DIORAMATIZED #02, part of my PhD research, is one of the installations in this festival.

DIORAMATIZED #02 had its premiere last year @ M Museum Leuven. The picture above shows an installation view at the museum.
I’m curious how the installation is perceived by visitors of the festival, a much more pronounced group I’m sure.
Sunday November 11 the festival wraps up with a happening:

“Sound bursts out at you from every corner of the Concertgebouw. Musicians, composers and sound installations take over literally every inch, if not physically/materially, then certainly with music.”

http://www.concertgebouw.be/agenda_detail.php?type=reeks&rid=168&aid=43031&aid=43031

Some more pictures of MULTIPLE voice/vision – BACH

This photo-selection documents the process of setting up the installion for the premiere of MULTIPLE voice/vision – BACH at AMUZ 1 october 2011.
It took 3 (very) long days, plus on the fourth day – saturday oct 1 – final finetuning and a general rehearsal with the musicians before the concerts in the evening.

 

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I currently have a PhD fellowship at KU Leuven, Associated Faculty of the Arts. This blog documents my PhD research, where I explore the workings of cylindrical anamorphosis in audiovisual media. My practice based arts research shows an evolution towards installation-based works.