Read me – An Audiovisual Installation

Dear all,

the upcoming year will mainly be dedicated to the development of the artwork for what if? The drone remix is a big starting point for that, especially since I have just been working on the interactive audio-visual installation “Read me”. (If you read to the end you will get to know how the drones might come into that).

The installation “Read me”What is it about?

Clio Montrey, Amir SafariWhen we get to know a new person, we watch them talk, laugh, and interact with us, with others, we see a gesture, hear what they say and often have a spontaneous feeling of “yeah, I know exactly who she/he is.” We almost feel as if we were able to read the person on first sight. They seem so clear and obvious.


Clio Montrey, Amir SafariThen we get acquainted at a deeper level. We realize there are inconsistencies, maybe fractures in their personality, more to discover, delightfully (or annoyingly) confusing contrasts.

Who is this person really? This friend, this acquaintance, this lover, this business partner?

We know more and at the same time we grasp less.

I want to capture this process, this journey of getting to know each other in image, text, sound and interactivity.

In my first version of the installation “Read me”, I will depict the singer, writer and composer Clio Montrey. You know her as my colleague from what if. When I asked her to choose a text which has importance to her, she shared Klara du Plessis poem “Mannequins” with me. I combined it with suffragette texts that to me symbolize Clio’s strength as a contemporary woman. The music I composed is based on a bass guitar pattern from popular music that I combined with Clio’s spoken voice and singing thus picking up on her personal crossover musicianship.

In the installation, the audio and the visual content will reflect the complexity of our impressions of a person. The closeness of the relationship will be expressed through the distance of an audience member to the projection. The further away one is, the clearer the material will be (at its limit, one soundtrack and one sentence visible on the projection). The closer we get, the more complex and layered the material will become (as can be seen in the featured image). The distance of an onlooker will be measured via an ultrasound sensor and translated to the audio and text projection by an “Open Frameworks” software patch and Arduino.

In future versions of “Read me,” the installation can be adjusted to different personalities. And here is where your drones come in. (For those who don’t know them yet, here is the link):

The installation will always only be about one person, but with each exhibition I want to adjust it to a different person from the community of what if? So, when your music for our drone remix contest came in, I was happy to realize that some of your drones would perfectly lend themselves as audio material to the installation. And I had the idea to customize to those composers using their chosen texts, imagery and sounds, (if they want me to).

Featured image: Screenshot of the installation “Read me” © Barbara Lüneburg.
Photograph of Clio Em: ©Unison Shot.
Text sources – Klara du Plessis “Mannequins”, National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies, 1913.

A video of the installation is soon to come, please bear with me.

About barbara_lueneburg

My personal characteristics: curiosity and passion for the arts. My professions: (electric) violin | sound art | research.

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