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27-31 August 2019
Poznań, Poland
Europe/Warsaw timezone
programme last update: 23 August 2019
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Contribution Paper

Poznań, Poland - Morasko Kampus, room: 3.132

Digital Imaginings and Analog Hardware: Compositional Processes Revealed Through Interaction Between Human and Non-Human Actants

Speakers

  • Holly WARNER

Primary authors

Description

During collaborative compositional work in recording studios, spoken narratives were reduced to a series of vocable utterances, rendering the understanding of processes reliant on the technical understanding of the participants. Conversation about the progression of audio work is grounded in references to other signs, rather than cohesive descriptions of such. Usage of analog hardware and its deployment within the studio illuminates an embedded strategy of compositional practice utilised by interlocutors as they engage more and more in the digital domain, and are cycling further away from analog studios and equipment. For my interlocutors, analog hardware was seen as a tool for physically manipulating the digital imagination. As the structure of a composition is sketched out in a digital audio workstation, such as Logic Pro, the work undertaken on a computer is seen as a cerebral process that demands little in physicality from the artist. I propose that the lack of physical engagement felt by artists during compositional performance is revived through the interaction with non-human actants. It is in the interfacing between human and machine that the awareness of capacity is realised, and that this is guided to sculpt the imaginings in the digital realm by engaging the body in real time manipulation of materials. This in turn creates a space of inquiry between the digital and physical engagements of musical practice, and narratives that arise during this transitory period reveal aspects of self-making that would otherwise remain silent and unspoken.