Á Rafsegulsvið Jarðar


For the installation Earth 2010, Finnbogi Pétursson creates an interference wave measuring 7.8Hz in a pool of water. The tone, which can be heard and physically detected, is visible on the surface of the water in the form of waves. The frequency of 7.8 hertz corresponds to the physical phenomenon known as the Schumann Resonance, which is the frequency of the Earth’s electromagnetic field. For Pétursson, this frequency represents the primal pulse of our planet. The first video is Pétursson’s own professional video. The second is my fuzzy hand-held that zooms in on the reflected wave patterns.



(thanks to Finnbogi Pétursson)

True-born, delicious hot stuff


When you’re inside the Fablab of the Ars Electronica Center, you can see, through a glass wall, the Biolab next door where gene technology is demonstrated using synthetically cloned plants. A 3D printer that is used to produce replications through digital fabrication sits conveniently located nearby. Laterally connecting these two areas, we have the folding of proteins in nature meeting the folding of paper and synthetic fabrics in a field of research known as Oribotics. Working in the Futurelab, Matthew Gardiner has furthered his interest in an area where robotics, nature and origami intersect by creating interactive cyber-flowers called “oribots” that are made of a polyester fabric and contain proximity sensors that not only respond to, say, the presence of your hand, but are also networked to each other causing even small interactions to spread sympathetically amongst the other oribots. A blossom opens, causing 1,050 folds to actuate while electro-reflexes do the same to over 50,000 folds across the installation.

After Hours


 (thanks to Matthew Gardiner)




If you’re indoors, even in a tight little apartment, and you have some natural light streaming through your windows, you can grow your own tasty, healthy food by setting up what Britta Riley calls “windowfarms” – vertically growing hydroponic farms that will grow right in your window and won’t use soil that might take up precious living space. It’s a wonderfully compact system that produces healthy food without making a major carbon footprint.

(thanks to Britta Riley)



Elektromagnetische Feldforschungen


My interest in the work of Christina Kubisch goes back a few decades. Ever since the early Italian label recordings, I’ve been steadily adding to my library of audio and text (and in a recent case, DVD) and have frequently found her work to be on the level of people like Alvin Lucier and Maryanne Amacher. Based on the sound art works involving her interest in electromagnetic resonance, she clearly has a fantastic ear for sound. There was a wonderful variety of works that were being offered – pretty much in the following order as you entered and made your way through the Tabakfabrik: her film Wavecatcher; an installation consisting of numbered photos on a wall coupled to an audio guide called Ruhrlandschaften 2010; a multi-channel sound installation, Bewegungen nach entfernten Orten (50 seconds of video appear about 6 minutes into this slideshow) as well as the Electrical Walks tour through various electronically vibrant spaces. We were outfitted with specially created magnetic headphones that made audible the various electromagnetic fields that surrounded us while being personally guided through areas that normally would be closed to the public such as the inside rooms of the on-site power plant or warehouse basement areas as well as normally accessed areas amidst various technology-enhanced artworks on display. We also had the ability to borrow the specialized headphones and create our own walk through the city of Linz. A map was provided suggesting areas of interesting and particularly vibrant sound loci.


During an electrical walk, one of the first things that you notice is the overall change in the psychological dynamic of your physical position in relation to your aural perception. Not only is there no longer the one-to-one correspondence between what you see with what you hear, but the depth of it extends to where the normally unheard is now clearly present while the associated sounds have become just an underlying muffle – if heard at all. For me, this is a beautiful experience because it provides a new perspective that lies almost solely in the realm of what some may call contextual confusion, but what I like to think of as an auditory situational-event. Of the recordings that I’d made, the best was of the single electrical walk through Linz, but I still wish I had made at least one more that had followed a self-devised compositional scheme. This recording seems to present a kind of suite of movements that are not clearly deliniated – which I feel is a positive thing. There becomes a dominant sound that sets a mood as a movement, then slowly, you later find yourself mentally attached to a different kind of movement with a “ground” of sound that can easily lull you into a sense of complacency. For the following audio, you will hear something that lies in-between the above-mentioned compositional scheme and the mapped out version that you see above – something resembling more of an electromagnetic trace of a psychogeographical dérive where a world of security gates, induction loops, WLAN transmitters, ATMs, ticket vending machines, LED tickers, TV screens, and other assorted electrical field generating devices impinge on us in ways that we’ve yet to uncover.

Audio MP3



(thanks to Christina Kubisch for the use of the headphones)

rheo: 5 horizons

Ryoichi Kurokawa‘s audiovisual installation is composed of five flat-panel displays,
vertically positioned, with five-channel sound – each mono channel paired to a display.
The spatial cognition of the sound is enhanced by being wedded to the movement of each image. The behavior of the image indicates the position of the sound source,
it’s sonic direction and drive. It was the winner of this year’s Golden Nica.







(thanks to Ryoichi Kurokawa)


One of the delights of the Ars Electronica Festival is attending the various forums where the winners talk about their inspirations for works past, present and future. Here, you’ll get to see what goes on during one of these forums. This year was the first to include the category of “sound art” – a category which joins up with “digital musics” – in order to encourage those that work in this area to submit works for consideration.The forum for this year’s winners was moderated by the excellent sound artist Christina Kubisch who gave a short introduction – speaking a little about the jury process – then introduced this year’s winners, Michel & André DécosterdRyoichi Kurokawa, and Martin Bédard, followed by a closing statement. Our first-time meeting was the day before during one of her “electrical walk” tours (of which I’ll speak more of in a later posting) in which we chatted about the influence of Alvin Lucier. It seemed like the perfect setting for me to remind her of John Cage’s 98th birthday that day as well. A longer than usual video for this website, but you’ll be able to not only hear the artists talk about influences and ways of working, but you’ll be introduced to some of their other works that have been featured in other exhibitions.




The lawine torrèn artist network seemed to spare nothing in their ode to a supersonic magnetic train called Baby Jet. The centerpiece of the Linzer Klangwolke was an espionage-type thriller revolving around the development of this train and those who would want to stop it from becoming a reality.

The thriller is fictional, but the development is quite real with the ÖBB (Austrian Federal Railways), the Ars Electronica Futurelab and the Linz Center of Mechatronics all working together to make this become a reality. Baby Jet is to be an underground magnet (maglev) train that could exceed Mach 1 while traveling through a vacuum tunnel. A network of tubes with a diameter of less than three meters would link Europe’s cities like a subway system connects a city’s neighborhoods. Each tiny train (called a nacelle) would resemble a bullet and would need no engineer to drive it. It would shoot through a vacuumized tube at speeds of 1200 km/h with practically no friction or wind resistance. Trains would run every two minutes with a revolver system at downtown terminals feeding each nacelle into the system. Linz to Wien would take 9 minutes. München to Berlin: 26 minutes.

Here are a couple of video excerpts – better than what I recorded from this hour-long event. Aside from the general overwhelming spectacle of it, I really was impressed by the helicopter pilots and their ability to manoeuvre while gently placing a person on the end of a long rope safely on a flat surface – oh! and the fireworks shooting out of the copters as well! The fast figure-eights of the illuminated jet skis were pretty incredible too. All of these spectacular events would take your mind off the truly awful 80’s-style arena rock/sensitive faux-opera that was coming from the speakers. It makes you wonder why the music wasn’t at least 21st Century. There’s no sound on either video.

(thanks to )

(thanks to )

Return top

biz at stas...

Rod Stasick is a composer in the broad sense of the term. He is interested in the creation of event-systems for various situations. Template scores are often created using a combination of graphic signs and symbols that usually suggests a syncretism of styles and methods of performance. Using these methods, he produces works in diverse disciplines (audio, video, text, mail art, conceptualism, etc.) utilizing assorted influences: Eastern Philosophy, Fluxus, The Situationist International, Oulipo, Semiotics, Discrete Event-Systems, random numbers to revamp Zen planning and forms of Information Theory.

  • Psychoacoustics
  • Generative Music
  • Composition
  • Sound Diffusion
  • Interactive Art
  • Installation
  • Sound Design
  • Radiophonic Art
  • Field Recording
  • Electroacoustics
  • Sound Art
  • Performance
  • Sound & Image

  • His studies with Karlheinz Stockhausen (2001-2007) have renewed his interest in various aspects of compositional integration.

    Extensive number of performances
    of experimental works.

    Archivist for the Jerry Hunt Estate

    Percussion studies:

  • Steve McCall
  • Dennis Charles
  • Charles Hammond
  • Gary Burton

  • Eternally grateful to these folks who had, in person, taken the time to encourage me in my compositional work (chronologically listed):

  • Alan Watts
  • John Cage
  • Joseph Beuys
  • Jerry Hunt
  • Alvin Lucier
  • Robert Rauschenberg
  • Merce Cunningham
  • Buckminster Fuller
  • Nam June Paik
  • Charlotte Moorman
  • Anthony Braxton
  • David Tudor
  • Earle Brown
  • Pauline Oliveros
  • Ben Patterson
  • James Tenney
  • Christian Wolff
  • Karlheinz Stockhausen