The HEARIMPROV project was a collaborative performance project culminating in a public performance that took place at the Sage Gateshead. Lead artist Adinda van ‘t Klooster brought together nine musicians and artists from different backgrounds, some of whom were trained in music and others in the arts or dance, and asked them to improvise on acoustic instruments to accompany animated graphic video scores by the artists Julie Freeman, Steve Brown, Dominic Smith and Adinda van 't Klooster.
The collective sound output was captured by three directional microphones and fed through a Max patch which visualised the sound in a three-channel live spectrogram in the colours red, blue and green which were slowly drawn across the screen from the right to the left. The spectrogram showed the frequencies present in the sound. The louder the sound, the more vibrant the colours of each different microphone output. The colours also overlap which makes it harder to read the spectrogram scientifically or literally. For example, when red and green overlap, yellow is created, when blue and red overlap it generates purple and when all three colours overlap, the overlapping area turns white. The user of the interface can also amplify or limit chosen frequencies.
The intention with this artwork was to create a system of possibilities, rather than a fully controlled output. To create a piece that is based on some simple instructions but that will always be different, even if the piece is played many times. The intention of adding the spectrogram, rather than just improvising to visual scores, was to make the music more available to people with hearing problems.
© Adinda van 't Klooster, 2007, All rights reserved