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Ikons (2010)

Medite composition board, graphite, acrylic paint, 1x4 hemlock, ultrasound sensors, embedded speakers, sampled acoustic sounds, control interfaces, interactive software.

Commissioned by Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad

Damon Holzborn, software realization; Rick Ross, technical consultant.

Collection of the artists.

Eric Metcalfe’s art practice epitomizes the Canadian avant-garde. His work has merged and crossed disciplines since the late 1960s: painting, drawing, sculpture, installation, printmaking, performance, video and film. A pioneer in interactive music, the computer-based installations of ICASP researcher George Lewis provoke confrontations between agency and indeterminacy. The shapes and forms of Ikons evoke the wildlife and spirituality of the Pacific Northwest, mediated by a computer program that uses the detected presence of visitors’ bodies to drive a continuous recombination of sounds derived from a Lewis work for chamber ensemble composed for the installation.

IKONS was presented at the 2010 Guelph Jazz Festival Colloquium.

View footage of the IKONS installation at the 2010 Vancouver Cultural Olympiad here.

View footage of the IKONS installation at the 2010 Guelph Jazz Festival Colloquium here.

So one of the things that improvisation has come to mean in the context of highly technological performance is that improvisation is the last claim to the legitimate presence of a human in the performance of music.

– Bob Ostertag