Masato Takahashi: bogs: Instrumental Aliens

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    bogs: Instrumental Aliens


Creation Year:



Artist Statement:

    In the field of computer music, it has been proved that Fourier Transformation can generate all types of sounds. Though some researchers may be puzzled by this fact, in recent work, “how to ‘manipulate’ sounds” has become an important issue. As artists, we want to help musicians become more familiar with their instruments. Typically, Japanese take good care of their belongings and treat them as if they are alive. This is especially true of musicians, who tend to love their instruments. In this work, we aim to inject “spirits” into musical instruments. Bogs generate virtual voices by simulating the sounds generated by human vocal cords. They also contain haptic interfaces that are made of new materials called “prosthetic skins.” This interface makes the range of manipulations more dynamic and expressive. There are several kinds of bogs. Some bogs are controlled by human beings (as if they are musical instruments), while others change according to their environments. It is our dream that “the orchestra of nature” will become a reality. These bogs are the first step in realizing this dream. Our goal is to develop “new aliens,” a hybridization between instruments and creatures, in the 21st century. We are eager to spread bogs into many places and enlarge their habitats all over the world.

Technical Information:

    Bogs have two types of sensors and one type of actuator. The air-pressure sensor detects changes in internal air pressure, and the two-axis acceleration sensor monitors delicate hand movements. The vibrating motor is activated according to these changes. Bogs also use Bluetooth technology to transmit
    real-time-composited audio data to the computers, and they communicate directly with each other. An audio processing system, using formant synthesis for “voice generation,”
    works with Max/MSP. Sensor data fill in variables in the formant-synthesis program and generate a complex, continuous variation in “voices.” This project is supported by CREST, JST