Invenio’s latest work is a new collaboration with video artist Robert Jarvis that uses voices as triggers for lighting events.
Composed by Gian Slater, Luminesce explores a pattern orientated musical landscape derived from a visual perspective through Jarvis’ software program, Voxstripe. Within the parameters of symmetry, form and velocity, the music ranges from intensely rhythmic to lush harmonic clusters, creating a different vocal ensemble landscape and performative environment.
Out of the darkness, sheets of colour and geometric shapes are projected onto each of the seven performers, activated and deactivated through every sound and every silence. Groupings of the performers emerge together as waves of light mirror the musical form, whilst always returning to the solo or unison voice, the spotlight or the blanket of illumination.
Luminesce premièred in June 2013 at the Guild Theatre as a 35-minute work. An extended version of the work is underway for a late 2014 performance season.
Robert Jarvis is a musician, video artist and creative coder based in Melbourne, Australia. He produces and performs live audio-visual work, animated music videos and develops software for audio-visual performance and composition. Recent work has included a dual-location timelapse Installation in Hobart and Melbourne as part of Dark MOFO and custom software written to control the Melbourne Town Hall pipe organ. Robert is currently completing his Masters in Computing and is pursuing further research into augmented musical performance.
‘Luminesce focuses on the abstract, musical side of Slater’s work, occasionally delving into more spikily chromatic territory than is usual for Invenio. The work is a collaboration with musician, video artist and creative coder Robert Jarvis. Using his software Voxstripe, Jarvis transforms the seven parts of Slater’s composition into visuals that are then projected onto the white-draped singers. Jarvis’ visualisations are simple and effective, like Slater’s music, using shapes and primary colours to highlight the shifting rhythms and phonemes of each singer. It’s such a magical combination of sound and light that it would seem a shame to ruin the surprise of future presentations of this work, which is currently in a “pilot” stage. In short, pastels bathe the ensemble in a glowing rainbow as they fill the room with diffuse harmonies, geodesic spheres are poetically transformed into jagged burrs as though a spiritual transformation is being enacted with each note and apertures like the insides of eyelids reveal and eclipse each singer as though under the gaze of a seven-eyed musical consciousness.
As well as being intensely satisfying for the pattern-searching brain we all share, Jarvis’ visuals highlight the polyphonic nuances of Slater’s composition, which reconciles the worlds of abstract musical composition and the extended possibilities of the vocal organs. It is remarkable that interactive technology is so familiar and affordable these days that elegant pieces such as Invenio can be produced without reliance on any technological “wow” factor, but rather trusting to the poetic integration of interactive projections into the composition. I’ll keep you posted about future showings of this hypnotic work.’
– Mathew Lorenzon (Partial Durations 2013)