Fade To Infinity
My sound art installation, Fade To Infinity explores the idea of things getting asomtotaly further and further away but never fully disappearing. The idea was inspired by the concept of gravity in that the gravitational force between two objects gets weaker with distance but never becomes 0. If there were two atoms on opposite ends of the universe, given enough time, they would come together. The same is true for soundwaves travelling through the air. As they disperse from their source they become weaker and interfered but they never disappear. I wanted to capture this phenomena in a condensed and easy to interpret format, and so, Fade To Infinity was born.
The setup of the installation is very simple. 2 omnidircetional condenser microphnes are placed 3 meters away from the two speakers. The microphones pick up the sound from the speakers as well as the sound from the room. The speakers are programmed to replay sound picked up by the microphones 5 seconds later. This creates an infinite loop of any sound in the room, getting quieter and quieter with each repetition while new sounds are added into the mix. After a while, the resident harmonics in the room become apparent and ever-present in the sound much like in Lucier's "I'm Sitting In A Room". These harmonics change dynamically according to the average, background sound picked up by the microphones. Participants are encouraged to interact with the installation either by talking or making noise into the microphones or simply to sit in front of the speakers and listen to the sound.
I first used this concept in my piece, "Everything Changes" Which premiered at Sound Spectrum Festival in April 2013. The piece involved me performing a monologue into a microphone and then having that sound be put through the same process as formentioned. Unfortunately, the execution of this piece did not go as hoped. The feedback level was set way too low and was almost inaudible during the performance and was processed in mono.
The full completed version of Fade To Infinity was premiered at Installation City at The Perth Artifactory later that year in May and was a huge success. This time, the audio was processed in Stereo which added a spatial dynamic to the piece. The installation worked perfectly with participant interaction and received many positive comments throughout the night.
Fade To Infinity is set to take to the streets of Perth city this coming winter and hopefully should receive a full and long-lasting installation career.