Recorded January 20, 2011
Lawton Hall - Live Video and Audio Improvisation
Drift (a Field) uses the programming tool Max/MSP to create a visual environment that can be explored in live performance. Using the Max patch, the performer can wander through an imaginary landscape of video images, which are projected on the screen.
In contrast to the meandering video, the audio is entirely fixed and imposes a linear aural narrative onto the largely indeterminate visuals. Familiar-sounding timbres become unfamiliar as they drift in and out of the soundscape and crumble like distant radio signals.
When I first began to formulate ideas about Drift (a Field), I described it as a “meditation on snowblindness.” Though it since has evolved and changed, I feel that this description is still apt, given the imagery and aural processes used in this piece, which reflect the transformative and blinding processes of decontextualization that can take place as technology filters and transmits sounds and images.
The title "Drift (a Field)" was inspired by the poetry and prose of Upper Michigan writer Ander Monson, whose works similarly deal with issues of space, place, technology, and snow.
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