crudspades ginormous thing at bent 2010!


the crudspades ginormous thing went up at bent last week! i had to restrain myself from putting documentation online too early, because i didn't want to spoil any surprises. steve litt and i had a great time working on this project, and i look forward to working with him in the future... we have been talking about recording an album of crudbox music. i'll post updates here, of course.

here is a link to the concept art and proposal. the installation consisted of a small ensemble of self-amplified trash sculptures, with steve's crudbox as the conductor. we ended up making 6 pieces and finding 2 prefab appliances. they were:

  • a large metal slinky with several metal beaters hanging inside it, shaken with a solenoid
  • a metal grate, previously used as a gong with mike clemow for our performance at the silent barn a few weeks ago (as the todd walker tabernacle choir), hit with a solenoid
  • two amplified cans hit with solenoids
  • a piezo-speaker feedback synth, activated with a relay
  • an electro acoustic sculpture we came to call "richard." richard was made from a flat ribbon speaker i pulled out of the trash over a year and half ago. on either side hangs a small electret microphone. the mics are ring-moded together, using the jar, and the amplified signal is fed back into the speaker. crudbox sequenced richard by turning a small, hidden led on and off, which was paired with a photoresistor to pulse the feedback on and off. when used in this way, richard mainly provided a low end "wump!" sound. however, running in stand-alone mode, independently from crudbox, richard could generate a huge array of tones, and was immediately playable. furthermore, the no-frills interface provided an opportunity for meaningful collaboration with others. i am curious to build out the other flat speaker i found and make a second richard. i feel like i could play an entire set on this instrument alone. if i made a second one, it could be interesting to have three people interacting with the system onstage. i will post video of richard running solo in a later post.
  • an old vhf analog tv, activated by a relay. steve and i were amazed at the beautiful shapes and patterns one could get simply by turning the television on and off. we even got it to change stations sometimes! steve is now obsessed with tvs.
  • an old turntable, activated by a relay. steve had tried this approach before during the mmix festival last fall. we used an lp of 500 lock grooves.

Some video, taken in my kitchen just before we installed in dumbo, may be seen here.

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