EAVI at NIME 2015 – report

The New Interfaces for Musical Expression (NIME) 2015 conference took place between 31st May and 3rd of June 2015, at Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA (https://nime2015.lsu.edu). Goldsmiths, EAVI group (last year’s hosts of the conference) participated with 2 performances (by Marco Donnarumma and Miguel Ortiz) and one demo (by Nuno Correia).

Notes from Marco Donnarumma’s performance (with Baptiste Caramiaux), 1st June:
“Corpus Nil is a body art performance for biophysical sensing technologies, surround sound and interactive light. A body is kneeling on the floor in the dark. Feeble crackle sounds fill the room and flashes of dim light barely illuminate the scene. Through a series of movements that explore the limits of muscular tension, limbs torsion, skin friction and equilibrium the body parts are reconfigured. As it moves, the body produces neural and muscular signals that are captured through a combination of biophysical wearable sensors. A software computes the biosignals to extract information on expressive aspects of the body movements, like force, abruptness and articulation. According to those expressive parameters, the system creates sound forms and light patterns. These emerge from the body, but are not directly controlled by it. The sonic world shifts across textural constructions and microtonal variations, while a play of light and darkness hinders the spectators’ view of the shape-shifting body on stage. Echoes and shadows embraces the body so that the skin and the bones appear as new surfaces, the fingers and the neck seem to move as new limbs. The combination of sound, light and movement ascribes alternative qualities to the flesh.” (from the NIME program)


Notes from Miguel Ortiz’s performance (with Anna Weisling), 2nd June:
“I’ll Be On The Water is a duo performance in which both audio and video are generated and directed through physical gesture and tactile manipulation. The use of a tangible instrument not only embodies the overall metaphor of the piece (that memory can be elusive, buried, and uncovered) but also affords the opportunity for both parties to step away from their screens and collaborate in an immersive way—something visual performers can not often do. Ultimately, the piece reflects the fragmented and sometimes invasive nature of an experience that cannot be either recalled quite clearly enough, nor entirely forgotten.” (from the NIME program)


On the 3rd June, Nuno Correia presented the outcomes from the first Gen.AV (Generative AudioVisuals) hackathon as a demo. The demo consisted of 2 computers and a tablet running the different projects, a video and a slideshow on the process and projects. As part of the demo submission, Nuno Correia also wrote a 3-page paper (with Atau Tanaka) presenting the process, projects and a preliminary evaluation. The paper (and video) can be downloaded from: https://nime2015.lsu.edu/proceedings/230/index.html Abstract of the paper:
“We present a user-centered approach for prototyping tools for performance with procedural sound and graphics, based on a hackathon. We also present the resulting prototypes. These prototypes respond to a challenge originating from earlier stages of the research: to combine ease-of-use with expressiveness and visibility of interaction in tools for audiovisual performance. We aimed to convert sketches, resulting from an earlier brainstorming session, into functional prototypes in a short period of time. The outcomes include open-source software base released online. The conclusions reflect on the methodology adopted and the effectiveness of the prototypes.”