Pulse Soundscapes

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These soundscapes are compositions that originate from a performance art series (Pulse Project: 2011-2015) in which I use intuitive touch informed by Chinese pulse diagnosis as a means for exploring the intersubjective space/time between self and others. In this way, I create a sonic ecology of embodied soundscapes that convey the unique infrasonic landscapes hidden within each person. These soundscapes are not interpretative of the western notion of the circulatory system, but instead draw on Chinese medical philosophy in order to represent the body as a living cosmos pulsating with matter and energy.

The following tracks represent the transcription of an individual's pulse into a rhythmic landscape. The intimate impressions of the encounter allows me to interpret each individual’s pulse as a unique set of sound-wave images according to the lexicon of traditional Chinese pulse diagnostics - a complex set of 28+ ideal waveform images that form infinite combinations that correspond to metaphysical and somatic states of being. In using pulse reading to make a record of the internal oscillations of others, touch is used as a method of deep listening that enables me to translate the subtle energies and pulsatile flowing of blood within the body of another person into a bespoke soundscape.

These compositions are created using the audio synthesis programming language SuperCollider.  Instead of using SuperCollider to create logical musical arguments (as is standard), my use of SuperCollider intensifies its focus on listening as the basis for composing each landscape – as I adjust the sine wave shapes and functions within each programming command by my ‘ear’ in order to create sounds which match the fluid and electric-like nature of the vibrations I feel within people’s pulses. Clinical notes, drawings and graphic notations generated from the performance are aide memoires for composing each SC command line so that the vibratory qualities of the drawn lines associated with each pulse position can be rendered as faithfully as possible.



Pulse Soundscapes
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Pulse Project