Wearable Sound Experiment

May 16 and 17, 2009, V2_ Institute for the Unstable Media held a 2-day workshop on wearable technology lead by Mika Satomi and Hannah Perner-Wilson aka Kobakant.

After the workshop introduction and meeting round participants were split up into two groups to distribute the wide variety of skills. The background of participants was broad (ranging from industrial designers to fashion designers to hard- and software developers). As the average knowledge of the participants was quite high, the goal of the workshop was ambitious: create a performative sound experiment.

Kobakant showed many examples of their work and provided the right atmosphere for a long day of discussion on the yet-to-be created pieces. Near the end of the day both groups had a clear idea on the theme, sounds, looks and performance they wanted to create.

The second day was the day of hard labour. This day the ideas of the 1st day had to be put into wearable garments using conductive threads and textiles, hacked toys which Kobakant brought, Lillypads and self made sensors. During the day it became apparent that the two groups had taken very different directions. First group developed into the direction of a modern dance performance in which contact improvisation was the major theme. The garments were made into a large contact sensor using conductive threads. Different sounds were generated and processed depending on the place and change of human contact.

The second group took a direction into poetic, theatrical costumes to explore the ritual of meeting. Generated sounds and a live played cello soundscape were transformed by the meeting ritual. Light sensors in the frays influenced the soundscape, while a self made motion sensor introduced a hint of a modern form of communication.

Cello sound-input

The results are performed at V2_ during Test_Lab: Fashionable Technology.

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