MINDSCAPE – Performance & Installation

Interactive Performance & Installation for BCI (Brain Computer Interface), immersive sound and light wires

 For WEB-MINDSCAPE (please scroll down) 

MINDSCAPE  is an electroacoustic performance introducing light, brainwaves and live-electronics in which  data coming from reading brainwaves of the performer control the sound events of the composition, a concept inspired by  pioneer composer Alvin Lucier with his piece “music for Solo Performer” (1965). All the events follow a rigorous score, which nevertheless can have different sound results due to changes in the data coming from the brainwaves. The actions are therefore not improvised, but carefully planned in advance and written down in a kind of score, which however, does not use common musical notation.

MINDSCAPE  is a metaphor of what we are becoming in this digital era. Like most people nowadays, the performer appears isolated and hooked up with a computer, her body connected to and surrounded by light wires, creating a distance between the own body and the environment, symbolising the desire to become a machine or cyborg that attaches artificial technologies to its own structure.  The performer appears rigid on the stage, but her inner emotional states give continuously movement and transformation to the audiovisual environment. 

In MINDSCAPE, the performer interacts with a light structure made by electroluminescent (EL) wires and sound via a BCI – Brain computer Interface, which measures her brain waves, which create and control the light and the octophonic sonic environment.

MINDSCAPE performance from Claudia Robles-Angel on Vimeo.

WEB-MINDSCAPE  is an interactive installation joining diverse aspects, such as social network, sound, brainwaves and visual elements. It creates an immersive audiovisual environment, which is site-specific, where sound is diffused in surround, and the visual elements consist of light produced via electroluminescent wires (EL wires).

There are two versions of this installation: Interactive and Automated.

Interactive version: visitors are invited to interact with the audiovisual environment (light and sound) by using a BCI interface, which reads their brain activity. Thereby, they are confronted to messages from a social network (in this case, Twitter). The tweet messages are turned into audible sound, and the computer measures thereafter the cerebral activity of the visitors, and analyses their emotional reactions to both the environment and the tweets, transforming this data into visual and audible signals, which reproduce how the inner of the subject is influenced by the outer environment and at the same time, having an impact on the installation’s audiovisual environment.

Automated version: data changes randomly and continuously, simulating those values common for brainwaves. 

EL cables glare when applied to an alternating current (AC). Once the AC has been activated, the data from the visitor’s brain waves (via a BCI – Brain Computer Interface) takes control of the cables’ activation in different tempos. The sound section consists of a surround (octophonic) soundscape, which changes depending on the information coming from the BCI.

This first version of thihs installation was created in 2016 during an artist residence program at IK Foundation in Flushing (NL) with  the support of Mondriaan Funds and the Institute of Musicology – University of Cologne. 

Related research articles:

  • Robles-Angel, C. The Human Body as an Audiovisual Instrument. Sound and Image. Aesthetics and Practices (2020) Andrew Hill editor, Routledge. ISBN 9780367271466.

  • Robles-Angel C., Gernemann-Paulsen A., Seifert U. (2022) Web-Mindscape and REFLEXION – In Sync/Out of Sync –: Biofeedback and Physical Computing in Inter-active New Media Art. In: Wölfel M., Bernhardt J., Thiel S. (eds) ArtsIT, Interactivity and Game Creation. ArtsIT 2021. Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering, vol 422. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978- 3-030-95531-1_2

Press articles:

WEB-MINDSCAPE Installation at Harvestworks from Claudia Robles-Angel on Vimeo.

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