“A dark room. A pool of light, with a camera and microphone.
A curtain of 12 metal plates hangs from the ceiling - the metallophone.
The room is a musical instrument, and you are the actuator.”
Quote by Tamiko Thiel published in "I am Sound" via www.mission-base.com
I Am Sound is an art installation that interweaves image processing software from Tamiko Thiel and custom real-time music composition software developed by Christoph Reiserer. The visitor enters a dark room illuminated from above by a cone of light. In front of them are hung 12 aluminum plates. The image processing software surveys the video camera input to determine whether or not a person has entered the cone of light positioned in front of a camera. Once a person is detected, an image is captured and projected onto the plates, which are tuned to each of the twelve fundamental frequencies. The software then begins to examine the image as a whole as well as on each plate to determine four distinct values for the light/dark contrast. The music composition software then translates this data to establish the fundamental pitch, the harmonic spectrum's structure, and the tone's melodic order. Next, a moving green box scans the portrait's forehead, eyes, nose, and mouth. These scans are performed to obtain extra light/dark values, which are used to produce variations that are overlayed on the initial composition of music. Presented to the user is a "mediated synesthetic experience of translating image into sound." This work interweaves contemporary questions of surveillance, face tracking, and personal data usage into a spatial and aural experience of transmutation and reflection.