Ebb & Flow

April 1998

Supported by The Greenwall Foundation

A series of three performances streamed live over the web that explored the relationship of technology, sound, and biological processes. Conceptualized by web-artists Nina Sobell and Jesse Gilbert, Ebb & Flow consisted of weekly webcasts of electronic experiments carried out using musical instruments, electroencephalographic devices (EEG), MIDI, and video.

REQUIREMENTS

Browse the archived images. The sound no longer plays from the Real Audio Streaming server. However, the sound files are available if you’re interested.

ADDITIONAL NOTES

Drawing on Sobell’s experimentation with EEG feedback, which dates back to her residency at the VA Neuropsychology Lab, Sepulveda, CA in the early 1970s, the team will use IBVA software to translate the brain wave data into sound, via a MIDI bridge. The sounds created will correspond to the frequency and amplitude of the peak wave, creating a musical baseline that will be accompanied by live musicians. The sounds will be mixed live to form an ongoing soundscape, and transmitted to a live audience on the web.

Each week a new configuration of players and EEG transmitters will be designed. EEG transmitters will make use of M. Kahata’s IBVA software. Planned configurations are as follows:

  • August 1: Nina Sobell (on electric guitar) and Jesse Gilbert (on synthesizer) accompany MIDI sounds that emanate from Jim Crawford, the EEG subject. Directed by Jesse Gilbert.
  • August 8: Nina Sobell (on electric guitar) and Jesse Gilbert (on synthesizer) accompany MIDI sounds that are being generated by a composite of their left and right brain wave states. Directed by Nina Sobell.
  • August 15: Nina Sobell (on electric guitar) and Jesse Gilbert (on synthesizer) accompany MIDI sounds generated by a composite EEG readout from Jesse and Sonya, who are reading a book. Directed by Sonya Allin.

During all performances a live audio and video feed will be maintained that will allow a remote audience to experience the process as it is happening. The archives of this webcast will be made permanently available to the Turbulence site.

The Ebb and Flow icon is an image taken from Nina Sobell’s Brain Wave Drawings of the 70s.

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