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Entries in light (5)



Mariska de Groot is a Dutch interdisciplinary artist who has been making and performing comprehensive analog light-to-sound instruments and installations for the last few years.
Just like Dewi de Vree, who we’ve featured before on this blog, she is a part of iii, an artist-run platform supporting radical interdisciplinary practices engaging with image, sound and the body in the Hague.
While having seen her performances and installations a few times, the thing that always amazes me is how the changes in the light caused by the spinning patterns are something that one can not really see with the naked eye, although they are very audible. A clear case of a situation where the ear manages to keep up in a better way than the eye does.
The way she explores the phenomenon is very interesting: in both a performative setting as well as installation settings, and everything in between. Sometimes the audience is allowed to interfere with the light patterns, sometimes it’s only Mariska playing the sounds.
For one of her latest projects called Vandmand, she collaborated with sound artist Lars Kynde (whose Tasteful Turntable we’ve featured before). Together, they researched notation and composed a piece for the Elsinore Girls Marching Band in Copenhagen. A sound/light composition for a big group of performers. A true spectacle in which the precision of a marching band definitely comes in handy.
She’ll be presenting a new version of her installation at the Birmingham Flatpack Festival next month!

The Enlightenment


The Quiet Ensemble is an Italian sound designer duo, consisting of Fabio Di Salvo and Bernardo Vercelli. We’ve seen their mice orchestra, and fish based installation before. Their latest project isn’t based around animals, but around lamps.

The Enlightenment is described as a “hidden concert of pure light”, performed by an uninhabited orchestra of lighting elements, including stagelights and high-powered bulbs. It reminds me somewhat of Francois Bayles “Acousmonium”, but with a variety of lamps instead of speakers. Neon lights instead of violins, strobe lights instead of drums, etcetera.

Each lamp is fitted with its own copper coil, receiving electrical current at various intervals. The electromagnetic field of the lamps are captured by a sensor attached to each lamp, which turns currents into sound. Salvo and Vercelli modify the electric emissions in real time, performing the orchestra.


Frequencies (Light Quanta)

Nicolas Bernier is a Canadian artist creating sound installations and performances. We’ve covered his work Frequencies (A) last summer. His “Frequencies” series is an ongoing process focusing on basic sound generation systems. For this iteration, Frequencies (Light Quanta), Bernier taking the quantum -the smallest measurable value of energy- as his conceptual basis. The project uses basic quantum physics in a metaphorical way to create 100 sound and light fragments that develop themselves organically, generating “an never expanding but yet disruptive form in time and space”.

Always good to see an artist develop an idea further, and look at it in different ways.


DJ Light

DJ Light is an interactive light and sound installation. Well, it’s not interactive for all visitors; there is one person who can orchestrate the light and sound performance. Move your body and conduct the installation like an orchestra. 

The installation was created by Cinimod Studio. 85 inflatable globes shift colors according to the ‘conductor’s’ movements and a multi-directional sound system adds a field of sound to the experience. An impressive job. 



condemned_bulbes is a sound and light installation created by digital creation studio artificiel. The installation was first exposed in 2003 but is still shown at festivals around the globe.

The installation is made of 1000W incandescent light bulbs, controlled by a custom made light dimmer that can bring the bulbs in "a state of excitation that is clearly audible and controllable". I especially like the crackling sound in between the noisy parts.