Burning the Sound (Transmediale Jury Statement 2009)
"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." This quote by Arthur C. Clarke applies well to Burning the Sound, a performance by young Portugese artist Rudolfo Quintas combining high technology with one of the earliest tools used by humans – fire. Over the thousands of years this element has not lost any of its magical,mesmerizing qualities. With all our current knowledge the behaviour of flames is still beyond our control and understanding. The performance amplifies this chaotic energy, taking us back in time to a moment when we would gather around a fireplace to witness to shamans. The custom software instrument developed by Quintas is so well designed that all of the involved high technology seems to disappear, bringing into focus the live performer and his skill of 'playing with fire'. The work is both compositional and performative – both technical and expressive. Quintas's own presence in the work drawing the audience
into the light of the flame leads to a kind of exchange – a kind of visual and physical ritual. The lighter functions as a kind of paintbrush that can carve out sounds from the air that fire is fire is constantly eating'.