I learnt of Kokino the place, the site of an Bronze Age observatory in Macedonia on the Serbian border, whilst researching shifts from stone working to metal tools. This was about the same time as NASA released a library of sounds from their archives as well as a series of exciting images from the Hubble telecope. I was immediately struck, despite the shifts in tools and, maybe a mere blink of 6000 years (actually hardly than more a slight twitch in cosmic terms), by the on-going desire to explore to make sense of and to project ourselves beyond our world into the ether, an endeavour hampered by technology, time and the limits of naked eye perception; objects we observe so far away loose sense of depth to become pin points of brightness.
Kokino the installation takes this urge and limitation as its starting point to create a 3d sonic exploration of the flat plane created by images from sources such as Hubble. I can't help wondering that to really appreciate the notion of space and the mechanics of systems revolving around each other, we need to render a section of the universe to something we sitting on a desktop that you could reach into and explore.
A flat image that the audience fly over lies at the core of Kokino, the sense of flying is ehanced by angling it in 3D in the Processing Sketch. Pixel data is taken from strategic points of the screen and then used in sound synthesis. One audience member acts as a 'pilot' using a Gamepad to control the flight over the base image, they can also zoom the point of view, adjust the level of color filtering on the image and also change image. Each of these functions effect the data that goes to the sound engine, either in the rhythm of the data or the colour shift. Whereas zooming in and out effects the spread of the data effecting the audio,
Two more participants act as 'navigators' effecting what pixels (data) can be sensed and how the sound engine then interprets this. The analogies to a flight deck are deliberate; chairs are added behind the 3 main participants (but within the 8 speaker surround sound field) this has the effect of partly creting a peformative event to the work and also acts as a training point for people waitng to participate.
The initial stages of Kokino were developed at a residency at NOVARS with the kind support of Prof. Ricardo Clemet
- review of graphics (those grey boxes are indicators but need freshing up!)
- continuous evolving of audio
- from macro to micro, the same can be said from Space to the Quantum Level we just need to go the other way!