℗ Infinite Sun

Contemporary Art, Multimedia installation

  • Title: Infinite Sun
  • Artist: Annie Dorsen
  • Collaboration: Music Composition – Sound Design – Computer Music Design
  • Duration: 3 months
  • For: 12 computers
  • Design, network, technical direction: Ryan Holsopple
  • Sound design, generative algorithms, music: Greg Beller
  • Ircam Singing Synthesis Software ISiS: Axel Röbel
  • Chant transcriptions: Julien Pallière, François Vey
  • Production: Annie Dorsen LLC
  • World Premiere: Sharjah Biennial 14: Leaving the Echo Chamber, Sharjah, the 7th of March 2019
  • Exhibition:  Sharjah Art Fundation, Sharjah, from the 7th of March to the 10th of June 2019.

Infinite Sun is the first Artwork dealing with “Artificial Spirituality”. 11 laptops sing continuously from the dusk to the twilight, real-time generated spiritual songs. Out of a corpus made of well-known spiritual songs selected in various cultures on Earth and transcribed in the language of a singing synthetizer, an algorithm generates every 30 min, an original “Super-Mantra”, an unheard spiritual song. Each laptop, like a pilgrim monk singing its own song in a loop, starts morphing in an interpolating path leading to the common Super-Mantra. Every 30 min, the 11 computers join in a spiritual choir singing together a novel artificial celebration of life.

A Max master-patch running on a MacMini launches every 30 min a python script. The program picks up randomly some groups of singers together with some existing spiritual songs in the corpus. A score interpolation algorithm using a two layers probabilistic model, produces a Super-Mantra out of all the selected spiritual songs, and a respective interpolation path corresponding to each one. The MacMini send these scores to 11 laptops running Linux Mint, producing remotely the singing synthesis and playing it with a PureData Patch.

A set of computer sensor data (CPU%, network, Internal Temperature, …) called “the vitals” control the intonation and the loudness of the laptop-singers, the same way our physiological streams are interacting with our spiritual state. The computer screens + arduino leds relate the overall arousal/ activity of each computers and report as well the relationships to the group of singers.