Networked_Music_Review

Live Stage: Joseph Butch Rovan [us Providence, RI]

rov.jpg Let Us Imagine a Straight Line by Joseph Butch Rovan, featuring dancer Ami Shulman — A multi-movement intermedia project for interactive image, sound, and performance — one in a series of Studies in Movement :: October 17 – November 8, 2009 :: Opening: October 16; 5:00 pm :: Digital Humanites Lab (lower floor), Cogut Center for the Humanities, Pembroke Hall, 172 Meeting Street, Providence, RI.

Studies in Movement is a series of intermedia études based in part on the unique visual legacy of the great French physiologist Étienne-Jules Marey (1830-1904). From his pioneering work with graphical recording devices to his work with stop-action photography, Marey sought to break down locomotion in order to learn how humans and animals moved in the natural world. His experimental findings, which encouraged the development of both modern aviation and the film industry, not only offered new ways to perceive the fleeting movements of the body, but also left behind a remarkable visual legacy that offered visible traces of the ephemeral, and of the passing of time itself. Picturing time as discrete, frozen moments, Marey’s discoveries would anticipate the future of modern art and, in many ways, the digital age.

Using Marey as a starting point, Studies in Movement reconsiders the creative potential of the gestures he captured in visible form, in order to explore the intimate connection between gesture, sound, and image. My work explores the polyphony of gesture embedded in live performance, striving to make visible the fleeting connection between thought and movement.

Part 1: The first movement, or étude, of Studies in Movement is Let Us Imagine a Straight Line, an interactive installation that reflects on the ideas of Marey along with those of Marey’s colleague, the French philosopher Henri Bergson.

Joseph Butch Rovan is a composer and performer on the faculty of the Department of Music at Brown University, where he co-directs MEME (Multimedia & Electronic Music Experiments @ Brown) and the Ph.D. program in Computer Music and Multimedia. Prior to joining Brown he directed CEMI, the Center for Experimental Music and Intermedia, at the University of North Texas, and was a compositeur en recherche with the Real-Time Systems Team at the Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique (IRCAM) in Paris. Rovan worked at Opcode Systems before leaving for Paris, serving as Product Manager for MAX, OMS and MIDI hardware.


Sep 25, 2009
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Networked_Music_Review (NMR) is a research blog that focuses on emerging networked musical explorations.

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