“Coming from a science and engineering background I wanted a course that would allow me to focus those skills alongside an arts practice, and the new MA at DMSA seemed to fit the bill. The reputation of the lecturers and previous students too was a draw, the quality and breadth of work emerging from DMSA makes it a really exciting place to study.”
Hi Bob – please tell us a bit about your work and your influences
“I am a coder music producer, hacker, data scientist, educator, VJ, DJ and immersive experience artist operating in a space that weaves spatial sound, education, technology, politics and electronic club culture, into art.”For my final piece I have created ‘ICU’, an immersive interactive sound installation made from a networked collection of interactive devices and custom software that renders data from the faces of the audience and their movements.
Watch the ICU installation trailer:
Watch an ICU example:
Watch a timelapse of the ICU installation set-up:
“14 speakers and 3 screens surround the visitor with sound, light and images. A giant screen with abstract data towers over the visitor. An interactive scenario is projected on two screens that flank a camera reading the visitor’s facial expression. The left screen encourages the visitor to move while sharing their emotion. The right screen projects the extracted data of the visitor and reveals associated images and classifications.
“Synchronously the data harvested by the AI facial recognition system are sonified to reveal the secretive process at work. Sound is spatialised around the visitor, 9 ceiling speakers create a cloud of sound. 5 speakers at ear level create the data sonifications, producing an array of digital crackles and arpeggiated granular melodies.”The system exposes the classifications that allow this machine to understand what it sees. Sound is used to reveal these secretive processes; to create an experiential reflection of the workings of this technology.
“I have been influenced by several artists and researchers in the production of this work. Ryko Ikeda’s ‘Datamatics’ digital installations have been a real inspiration in the aesthetics of the work. The research of Kate Crawford (AI institute/ AI Atlas) and the Liquid Architecture (Eavesdropping) series have helped in the work’s conceptual grounding. My work builds upon the themes explored by those operating under the umbrella term of Surveillance Art such as Trevor Paglean and Jasmine Guffond.”
How have you found your course and time at Brighton?
“Personally the MA has been quite an intense but rewarding journey. As a mature student I chose to study part-time due to having a part time job working in music education and a family to support. With Covid happening and the children having to be homeschooled, time to study has been tight and at times has felt almost overwhelming. But the experience has been very rewarding and it’s not something I regret. The lecturers here have really helped me get the most out of what the course has to offer, and I have come away with so much experience and new skills. Initially I was not sure I could write a thesis again as it was twenty years between my undergraduate and the MA – but thanks to the help of my tutor and the structure of the course my approach to research is a skill that has definitely been refined. It is also something I can use day to day in my work moving forward.”
How did you choose your course – why did you choose to study DMSA?
“I was looking for an experimental music and arts course to expand my practice from purely music and digital works into a more holistic arts practice. Coming from a science and engineering background I wanted a course that would allow me to focus those skills alongside an arts practice, and the new MA at DMSA seemed to fit the bill. The reputation of the lecturers and previous students too was a draw, the quality and breadth of work emerging from DMSA makes it a really exciting place to study.”
What are your plans after graduation?
“I look to continue my programming work with Charanga, a web based music teaching platform, that supported me through my MA. The software I wrote for my final project has some practical applications – such as a musical instrument for those with limited motor skills, and is something I look to explore as a way of helping musicians with physical disabilities. I also am looking to reinstall the final work at various venues around the UK and have applied for various residencies and conferences in the EU over the next year. I also am writing several workshops to teach some of the core concepts of web based audio work. During lockdown I had the opportunity alongside Camp.Fr to write a score ‘The Sound of Surveillance’. This went on to be a part of an essay of impossible scores ‘Hearing the Impossible’ published with Accidental Records last month. This trajectory of work is the inspiration for an E.P. based that hopefully will be finished and released by the end of the year.”
We are extremely happy to have Akiko, one of our alumni, back to give a masteclass on her practice. Akiko has emerged into the sound world from a background in performance. Entering the dance industry at the age of 16, she has worked for mainstream pop artists such as John Newman and AlunaGeorge in videos that have received tens of millions of views. Throughout this time period, she has worked for the Universal Music group, Island Records, the BBC and Sky. Akiko has won a prestigious Nagoya Award of Excellence for her degree show piece titled 記憶 (Memory).
About the masterclass
The masterclass will cover the delicate relationship between self value, creativity and ego. More specifically, the focus will be on the students and how they will approach professional work after DMSA. I will speak about my experiences working freelance in the sound industry and the mental and financial demands that come with it. We will explore options of how they can prepare now, to help them navigate through the transition from university into the industry in the future.
Sound and Audiovisual artist Akiko Haruna constructs experimental sound and vision for the moving image. In her projects as a musician, Akiko dances along to a wandering beat. With cutting drums that tear through delicate sound design and flashes of extravagant melody, her dizzying sonic constructions are constantly evolving. Her musical works gained her a place at the 2018 Red Bull Music Academy in Berlin, after which she has been working on multiple projects including her release with Where To Now? Records earlier this year. https://vimeo.com/akikoharuna
Monday 21st September
5.30-7pm, Performance Studio
We are happy to have AJA with us to deliver a mastericlass-workshop to our students. AJA has taught across the UK and Europe at such institutions as for Ableton, Huddersfield University, Loughborough University, Confetti Music Institue, Fine Arts Institue (Vienna) and Teatro do Bolhão (Portugal) and have over 10 years experience in performing and writing music. AJA also has experience in teaching LGBTQ+ and female/non-binary focused workshops such as The End of Gender, Sounds Queer? and ITOUS.
About the masterclass/workshop
The workshop will be around how to make field recordings and create a wide range of different sounds and textures by only using simple, built in Ableton Plugins. Participants will learn to build ambient/drone/noise textures, experiment and discovering new sounds as a group through live demonstration. The workshop will also include:
Open discussions about safe spaces
Unique Sample Packs created for participants to take away for free
Live soundscape/track created
Archive of costumes from LU LA LOOP and discussions in visuals and illustration and creating your own merch.
We are happy to have one of our recent alumni back to give a masterclass to our students. Louis Sterling was the founder of the student-led imprint IDS. During his studies with us he won an employability award for his enterprenerial projects, he went on tour with internationally acclaimed music producer David August.
About the masterclass
“Synesthesia to the Sound-system”
In this session, Sterling will be unveiling the process behind his experimental music and curation of his debut record ‘Adisceda’ on Rough Trade, with insight into the music industry from the perspective of business – from signing contracts, to networking with your favourite artists, promoting your work on social media and creating your own unique platforms.
Louis Sterling, also known as Auxx, is a British recording artist currently signed to David August’s label 99Chants.
With experimental works making their way onto BBC Music, NTS Radio and URBNET Records, his debut record ‘Adisceda’ would become an ethereal project compared to the likes of Tim Hecker, The Dedekind Cut and Aphex Twin, making it’s way onto 12″ vinyl, courtesy of Rough Trade.
We are proud to announce the third event for ID Spectral – a record label and creative agency that promotes both up and coming and established artists as part of a new creative network.
The imprint, setup in June 2017, has since signed tracks from artists including Aphex-twin approved Ability II, Hyperdub’s Loraine James, Yaporigami, Anji Cheung and more.
At IDS Live, attendees will have the opportunity meet the staff behind the agency, learn more about the project; from its partners, the official distribution contract, IDS radio and future plans, as well as to experience three live performances from the label’s artists, including performances by current students and alumni.
1-9 June | DMSA Facilities| Grand Parade, University of Brighton The private view is on the 31st of May and starts at 4pm. Last Entry – 9.30pm Weekday opening times are from 10am until 5pm, and weekends from 12pm until 5pm. FB Event
We are honoured to be presenting to you the works by our third year students consisting of an eclectic mix of sound and musical compositions, live AV performances, experimental films, sound murals, generative art and installation pieces. Spanning across this wide range of practices and processes, all the works are supported by an underlying thread of challenging our perceptions and engaging us in a more attentive process of listening, feeling and experiencing.
This year we are happy to nominate four of our student pieces for the Nagoya Award and the newly launched Ithaca Awards. An * will be added next to the nominated pieces.
Good luck to all our students and congrats on their hard work!
Detailed schedule to follow.
AD Design: Jedd Winterburn
::Works on Display::
Thom Aurelius – MAX (Animation) | SS1
MAX is a short, animated film that depicts a story of a young boy, Max, who is experiencing the struggles of fitting in socially at high school. The project itself is a collaboration between two creative artists, Thomas Aurelius (producer, composer and sound designer) and Peter Golijanin (animator).
The animation’s main intention is to use the power of punk-inspired musical motifs and naturalistic sound-design to represent the feelings of Max as a character and the world that he is living in. This results in the audience relating themselves to the character of Max and his onscreen experiences.
Sonny Bacon Sonny Bacon – Lost In Process ( Experimental Film) | SS1
Lost in Process is an audiovisual experiment intended for large screen projection. The film explores sound’s ability to evoke, shift and steer atmospheres in combination with visual material. The audio of the piece was created using a variety of elements, featuring self-captured field recordings, foley and manipulated instrumental compositions.
The visual material was created through the recording and arrangement of still and moving image content captured using an array of visual technologies; DV Tape, 35mm and 16mm film. Themes of destruction, time and surveillance are presented as the experimental film unfolds.
Danny Baron – A Call To Perish (Immersive Radio Play) | SDL
A Call to Perish is an immersive radio play, which explores a fictional settlement that takes a turn for the worst. The play travels through different areas of the settlement, highlighting its diverse and unique soundscape, executed through diffused sound. The main concept behind this project is to use sound to create an observable story for the listener without any visuals or, in other words, the internal cinema. This project is to be exhibited in a 5.1 surround sound setup, optimising the realism and making it as engaging as possible for the listener.
Amanda Brooks – Sinkhole (Sound Installation) | Performance Studio
Sinkhole is a multi-channel sound art installation exploring themes of descent and life’s daunting threat of ‘going under’.
Using processed field recordings taken in various railway transport systems, the piece extensively uses audio relocation and movement, with sound panning between multiple speakers in an immersive cylindrical formation. The audio of the piece is manifested as a heavy volume of ‘water’ dropping onto the listener, creating a feeling of standing in an insurmountable sink under a giant tap. The sound then takes on different directions, engulfing the listener horizontally, vertically and diagonally.
The digital audio workstation Logic Pro X audio was used, alongside a fundamental production system with IRCAM plugin software. T.R.A.X Voice Transformer v.3 was utilised for sound processing with S.P.A.T Revolution controlling the vertical, horizontal and diagonal movement of the audio.
Duncan Cabral – Digital Forest (Surround Sound Composition) | SDL
Digital Forest is a surround sound composition that utilises environmental sounds to create a sonic space. Examining concepts of audio exploration and immersion, Digital Forest looks at sound’s potential to transport a listener to another place. Sound design, soundscape building, and surround sound mixing are all used within this work. The digital audio workstation Logic Pro X was used extensively, with plugins such as Serum, ES2, ESE being utilised alongside hardware synthesisers such as the Korg Monologue, Microbrute and Yamaha CS.
James Carroll – London Atmospheres (Experimental Film) | SDL
London Atmospheres aims to utilise soundscapes and visuals in order to capture the urban atmosphere found in various locations of London. Exploring the relationship between sound and image in film, London Atmospheres focuses on how atmosphere and tension is created. The footage of this piece was shot in central London at night in order to relay the intended atmosphere, with field recordings of the various London locations also being taken.
The soundtrack London Atmospheres uses musicality alongside environmental sounds in order to create an immersive piece, with a sense of underlying suspense in order to capture the listeners attention. A variety of software was used in the recording and editing processes, such as Adobe Premiere Pro CC, FL studio 12 and Logic Pro X.
Jack Cleary – FLUCTUS (AV Performance) | Performance Studio
Fluctus, which is Latin for waves, explores the concept of brightness in sound and visuals.
The work synthesisers the ideas of musical “Brightness, Flux and Logos” presented by philosopher Heraclitus, which attempt to describe how the universe works.
Brightness is a sonic quality determined by the number of harmonics, the more harmonics the brighter the sound. Flux is fluidity whilst Logos is structure, generating the tension necessary for the string to vibrate to create sound.
Inspired by classical Indian and ambient music, the performance is produced using Ableton and a collection of electronic instruments. The visuals, created in Touch Designer, are vibrating lines organised into a spherical shape while the timbre of sound informs the colour of the visuals through interaction with an OSC controller.
Nile Ezra – Nightshift (Musical Composition) | SS1
Nightshift is a series of three atmospheric instrumental tracks, which explore themes of darkness, inspired by science fiction and horror films such as Interstellar and The Shining. Using the digital audio workstation Ableton, various sound design techniques such as sampling, granular synthesis and Foley have been implemented to create varying aspects of sounds reminiscent of nightfall.
Daniel Fadil – Erosion (Short Film) | SS1
Erosion explores the physical forces at the coast as a metaphor for Britain’s erosive nature towards languages from other shores, with the sounds of the physical washing out eternally those of a minority culture. In this case, the examined language is Romany, or rather, the remnants of it familiar to the artist. Even in its distanced existence from British influence, it has still been diminished to the point of no longer being a language. A narrative based on isolation and foreignness is used to play out the history of this phenomenon.
Tarek El Goraicy – Singularity (AV Performance) | Performance Studio
Singularity is an audio-visual live performance of two songs from of my upcoming release Human Condition.
The presentation, containing elements of improvisation, consists of one laptop running an Ableton Live set, which is navigated through the use of a MIDI controller. Live synthesizers and live vocals are utilised, with a second machine also generating realtime visual projections through the use Touchdesigner and a MIDI-interface.
The performance aims to present a coherent interactive relationship between sound and visuals in the context of an immersive live performance, countering the traditional DJ/laptop-performance of electronic music.
Brianna Leeds – The Safe Space (AV Installation) | SDL
The Safe Space uses a quadraphonic audio set up to combine meditative tones and abstract art, forming an encompassing environment of mindfulness and peace. This project integrates research from the field of colour therapy, music therapy and spiritual influences. In the safe space the audience can gradually disengage from personal symptoms of anxiety or stress by experiencing the serene audiovisual display in their own time.
Olivia Louvel – The Whole Inside (Generative AV Installation) | SDL * ITHACA AWARD NOMINEE
Guidance: this work contains sensitive content.
The Whole Inside is a generative sound mural combining artificial and human voices, expanding the plastic dimension of voice on contouring the body.
The work confronts femininity and abuse, when the body is being depersonalised, subsequently dissociated as a defence mechanism to cope with a traumatic event.
The harrowing polyphonic vocal composition is based on a text sourced from the Incels (involuntary celibates) forum. On debating how to murder a woman, some members of the Incels community propose diverse actions, one being to rape her then to “take a surgical knife, cut open her abdominal area and remove the organs”.
Since October 2018, the site incels.me has been suspended due to the content that violated the domain’s anti-abuse policy. Applying principle of conditional logic, the randomised audio is carrying on indefinitely, revealing itself to the experiencer over time.
Jamie Moore – The Lily Pond (AV Installation) | Performance Studio *NAGOYA AWARD NOMINEE
Consisting of three large projector screens and 6.1 channel surround sound, The Lily Pond is inspired by Monet’s Water Lilies series (1914 – 1926), in a modernisation of their concepts. The work runs for a total length of 1 hour 40 minutes, creating a slow moving and enveloping spectacle on a grand scale, which cannot be interpreted in the same way from any viewpoint or temporal instance.
It uses field recordings and video taken at Monet’s garden in Giverny, as well as images taken of his paintings at Musée de l’Orangerie in Paris, re-imagining the works and expanding them into a multi-sensory environment, within a contemporary context.
Joseph Purefoy – Sampling the World (Musical Composition) | SS1 – 229
Sampling the world is a five track EP exploring the art of sampling in an attempt to demonstrate the vast possibilities found in manipulating and repurposing a sound. The work was produced with the digital audio workstation Logic Pro and focuses on expanding audio from its original context, shifting sound to a new sonic dimension.
Dominic Rae – Fits the Frame | SS1 – 229
Fits in The Frame is an experimental folk-inspired concept EP. Informed by themes of narrative, Americana, analogue photography and folk music, it aims to explore the gap between the continuous, uninterrupted flow of time and people’s tendency towards quantizing the idea of time into discrete, separate moments and sections.
A key facet of the EP is the consideration of ‘Morii’, the desire to capture a fleeting moment, which brings together the ideas of music, photography and storytelling by each component’s intrinsic nature: music as continuum, photography as instantiative capture, and storytelling as a bridge between the two.
Luke Vosper – My Bedroom (AV Performance) | Performance Studio
Stemming from a desire for a more natural and immersive way of composing and performing electronic music, My Bedroom is a studio and live setup that focusses on DIY and self-built hardware and instruments. Drawing inspiration from a space used for composition, performance, and instrument construction, My Bedroom explores an improvisation-based approach to electronic music.
As well as analogue and acoustic instruments, My Bedroom takes full advantage of digital tools. Using custom software and patches alongside complex synthesis techniques and an extensive sample library, this allows the music of the piece to be created in an improvisation-driven, performative way.
Matt Were – Piano I Ching (Prepared Piano / Interactive AV Installation) | 229 *ITHACA AWARD NOMINEE
Piano I Ching is an interactive audiovisual piece. The audio from the installation starts when a webcam picks up movement within close proximity to the piano. This results in solenoids and motors being triggered, brushing, scraping and hitting the piano, giving a familiar object a completely new vocabulary of sounds.
Each casting yields two trigrams (a hexagram), and each of the trigrams is associated with a sound sequence relevant to the time of the year. This piece attempts to create a synthesis of a Western cultural icon, the piano, with an Eastern cultural icon, the I Ching, by interpreting the latter divinations through sound on a prepared piano.
Jedd Winterburn – Zenith (AV Composition for multiple screens) | Performance Studio *ITHACA AWARD NOMINEE
Zenith is an audiovisual installation that incubates the practise of attentive listening, inviting the listener to discover an awareness of sound that can enrich one’s life after the event. The unique viewing experience of Zenith is notably engaging, operating over two screens and 4.1 surround sound in a highly curated environment. Hosting a palette of noise curated to explore the fringes of musicality, Zenith aims to promote the abstraction of sound’s form and function.
Wednesday 5th June | 12-8pm
Performance Studio, Grand Parade fb event page
Join Us for this year’s DMSA DAY, a full day of presentations, talks and performances, showcasing the work of our 1st, 2nd and 3rd year students, including experimental music, diffused audio pieces, experimental film, sound & moving image collaborations, sound art and radio art pieces as well as DYI and interactive instruments and processes.
This year we have the honour to have Kathy Hinde as our guest speaker.
Kathy Hinde’s work grows from a partnership between nature and technology expressed through audio-visual installations and performances that combine sound, sculpture, image and light. Drawing on inspiration from behaviours and phenomena found in the natural world, she creates work that is generative; that evolves; that can be different each time it is experienced. Kathy aims to create work that gives rise to a poetic and reflective experience that enriches an appreciation of the everyday, inviting a heightened awareness of the world around us.
Also, Radio Cascabel will be coming down to Brighton for a brief presentation of a new project space and sound art venue to be launched in London and to seek collaborations and proposals from our students.
The event will close with immersive audio-visual performances by Tarek, Luke Vosper and Jack Cleary. The performances start at 5pm.
The event is sponsored by the Creative Sound & Music Research Group (School of Media, University of Brighton).