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Bǎi (摆), meaning pendulum in Chinese, is an interactive installation that uses a speaker hanging as a pendulum from the ceiling combined with an hexaphonic speaker setup to create a responsive sound environment. Besides being a sound source, the pendulum speaker is also the interface by which the audience interacts with the installation. Through pushing, pulling and twisting, the audience can move the pendulum and set it into oscillating motions. A dynamic system underlying the installation translates these motions into different modes of behavior of the sound environment. At first, it may seem that the environment reacts to the motions predictably. However, exercising too much control over the pendulum causes the installation to quickly spiral into chaotic and unpredictable behavior. This, combined with the fact that hard physical labour is needed to restrain the pendulum, leads to a tense dialogue between participant and object, struggling for control. The movements resulting from this dialogue cause the sounds in the environment to change between different states of stability and chaos, hereby mirroring the types of dynamics that are also seen in natural ecosystems.

Exhibited at NIME 2018

Paper about the work won Best Paper Award at ArtsIT, Interactivity & Game Creation 2018

Concept and realization: Jelger Kroese, Danyi Liu and Edwin van der Heide

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