I would like to introduce you to another member of our community, the young Russian pianist Alina Murzakhanova. I met her at an international artist gathering at Schmiede Hallein in Austria. When she had seen my installation, she expressed the wish to get “Read me” personalized for herself.
“Read me – personalized version for Alina Murzakhanova (October 2015)
We talked a lot about art and life and exchanged experiences of what it feels like to live in a foreign country. I shared with Alina my memories of the time I spent living in Russia. She introduced me to her feelings of being abroad, which sometimes reminded her of the world of “Alice in Wonderland”. The grotesqueness of situations, the sudden fractures in everyday life, which way (of living and acting) is right, which way is wrong, are some of the many questions one is confronted with when living amongst people of another country. With her choice of text she also expresses her deep love of literature and classical culture.
All the sound material I used for Alina derives from the SoundCloud of the participatory arts project “Transcoding | what if?”. I chose bells to express the dreaminess of Alina’s world, claves to capture her determination, and sounds of an old, broken accordion that bring us right into the middle of her version of Wonderland.
The concept of the installation:
Often our first impression of a person leads us to believe that we can grasp who this person is. It seems clear and obvious. Yet the closer we get acquainted, more and more complexities about this same person are revealed.
In the installation “Read me,” 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. The audio and the visual content of “Read me” will reflect the complexity of our impressions of a person. The proximity 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.
“Read me” is part of the artistic work for the project “TransCoding – from ‘Highbrow Art’ to participatory Culture” (PEEK AR 259-G21, funded by the FWF).
Concept and composition – Barbara Lüneburg
Photograph of Alina and featured image: ©Barbara Lüneburg
Text fragments – Lewis Caroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
Sound source – Soundcloud of the what-ifblog.net project