Initial project description (2000)
A Motherboard Product Proposal
Inspired by a fictive contraption in the Philip K Dick novel, "We
Can Build You", we plan to build the Emotion Organ - a highly strung
instrument, both in physical, emotional and digital terms.
Physically, the Emotion Organ will be an object, an instrument for live perfomance - a media synthesiser where the player can compose with audio, visual, and tactile elements. RealAudio and/or quicktime livestreams will provide the major source of audio material.
Other materials include:
- projected imagery
- hot and cold air streams
- smoke machine
- electronic/electric and mechanical/acoustic sound sources
When played, the organ will release a synergy of sensory information which, having passed through custom-made, digital "emotion filters", evoke "classical" states of emotion.
The physical appearance of the organ will be an eclectic mix of ancient and modern gadgetry - simultaneously nostalgic and futuristic; a keyboard and a menagery of sliders, knobs, buttons, switches and tubes, etc, including a built-in computer connected to the internet, and a projector. An old wooden Ostlind and Almquist pump organ form the early 1900s will be taken apart and rebuilt adapting its original knobs, keys, levers and bellows to control the "new" elements.
In this physical form decsribed above, the Emotion Organ will be a spectacle as an art object, and the main instrument in a live performance in which we expect certain glitches to occur. We consider these inevitable glitches to be part of the Organ's own emotional networked state. With live streaming media as the primary source of audio input, the live performance also encompasses the possibility to include remotely located artists transmitting sound/imagery especially for this purpose.
We plan to use midi technology, with the software Keystroke* as a main component, to realise the technical aspects of the Emotion Organ. Keystroke is a multi-user cross media synthesiser - a distributed application that allows multiple players to generate, synthesize and process images, sounds and text within a shared realtime environment. The premise of the Keystroke project is to contribute to the emerging genre of telecommunications art. It is a vehicle for sending and receiving commands - a simultaneous realtime interchange with live and formatted media.
Target audience: 0 - 130 years
*old name, now called Keyworx