My recent projects engaged in sonic/audio composition and performance have been built through my activities of data sonification and field recording and sampling as they intersect with my creative research into emerging forms of biological narrativity and the state of ecological memory in a time of cascading extinctions. Interactive generation of these sonic works is at the center of my investigations into performative forms of emergent sensoria for understanding complex biological systems. Individual sonic works as well as their incorporation into my live (transmuted to life) cinema projects can be accessed through the links provided under sonic works and live cinema | video on this site.
The sonifications I am producing are generated from my investigation into perceptualizing bioinformatics datasets. This involves developing transcoding (from molecular sequence to sound and visual) software as well as creating new physical interactive instuments that further bring to center new performance and compositional possibilties
My recent investigations have produced a conceptually relevant audio base from MIDI and OSC translations of genomic and proteomic sequences – that is a sequence of notes is generated via the programmatic translation of the chemical composition of the biomolecules. For example a software program which can read the protein sequence of H-L-T-P (hystidine-lysine-threonine-proline) may have a MIDI output of note numbers 33-60-45-50 (notes A1-C4-A2-D3). These note equivalents are assignable to an arbitrary pitch scale structure and can be tuned based on the specific physiochemical characteristics one may want to relate to in the composition and content direstions of the work.
These sonic projects expand upon the research and creative investigations of Peter Gena, John Dunn and Dr. MaryAnn Clark investigating sonification of DNA and protein sequences to audio equivalents. My recent projects have expanded this technique base of individual biomolecular audio translations into a broader conceptual approach for the authoring of audio and live cinema compositions. In these projects I have streamed together meta-media elements that converge upon the biocultural context/significance for the molecules I am referencing. For example I may be focusing on the bioenergentics of an organism or the relevance of navigational proteins in movement or migration.
My recent projects have built a sonic base around the specific proteins and DNA/genetic sequences that relate to the locative processes of endangered migrations and charismatic human induced extinctions. Additionally I have enlisted the sonification of human cryptochrome proteins (proteins which sense light, direction and time) in projects speculatively exploring the interactions between human mappings, psychgeography and ecological encroachment I am perhaps the sole new media artist today who is working in the realm of the sonification of endangered and extinct species genomes.
In the development of my sonic works I have co-streamed bioacoustic field recording and sampling sets with my sonification base into my digital audio investigations of biological narrativity. Over the past ten years I have pursued bioacoustic field recording in endangered habitats as sonic content references to the conceptual base of my projects. A list of my extensive field research sites and the recording and data expeditions I have mounted can be found on the FIELD RESEARCH & EXPEDITIONS page of this website.
Complementing this sonification and bioacoustic audio library is experimentation into the development and usage of custom field microphones/recording devices for unique field recording opportunities and studio audio production. I have developed a number of piezo film-based contact microphones for recording surface vibrations of vegetation and plants. Additionally I have been utilizing these audio sensors for studio production of recent works and interacting with the sonications and sampled bioacoustics mentioned above as realized forms of performative bioinformatics. Additonall y I have built new microprocessor-based DIY wireless instuments for channeling of sonifications through unique species specific forms. My recent investigations bring together morphological forms and drawings as gestural and exploratory interfaces as an opportunity to fold togther new sensoria transcoded from the lost residues of endangered and extinct organisms with the unique physical forms and qualities that may have contributed to their demise from the overreach of the human hand.
My ongoing “Tools for Life Cinema” investigation extends this line of inquiry into sonic, physically interactive and visual interpretative works.