Projections on Elevations Tunes was commissioned by Simone Forti for her show, Soundings, at the Box Gallery in Los Angeles. Forti asked me to create something using her 1967 Elevation Tunes, which consists of a list of locations traveled through on a cross-country trip along with their elevations, as a basis. Elevation Tunes is of a piece with a previous Elevation Tune charting Forti’s travels up and down vertical space in New York City and her Face Tunes in that it was conceived according to a straightforward analogy between spatial elevation and pitch height. Wanting to move beyond that analogy, I also incorporated longitude and latitude for each location. I then generated 12 transparencies containing a subset of 47 points corresponding to the locations in Forti’s list. Six such subsets were plotted according to longitude, latitude, and elevation, four according to longitude and latitude, and two according to elevation, alone. Lines connecting the points were derived from the shape of a piece of strings dropped onto a tabletop from a height of about three feet. In performance, the placement of these transparencies on a projector screen provides indications for use by the musicians. The prerecorded audio is of a conversation between Forti and I, along with sine tones at frequencies corresponding to each location’s longitude, latitude, and elevation.
The video was taken at the Box LA on 27 August 2012 and was played as a video loop throughout the exhibit. The piece was subsequently performed at a concert associated with the exhibit.