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Cut And Splice 2005
Messa Di Voce
Messa di Voce (2003)
Golan Levin/Zachary Lieberman
The UK premiere of this audiovisual installation in which the speech, shouts and songs produced by gallery visitors are radically augmented in real-time by custom interactive visualization software. The installation touches on themes of abstract communication, synaesthetic relationships, cartoon language, and writing and scoring systems, within the context of a sophisticated and playful virtual world.

Levin and Lieberman's software transforms every vocal nuance into correspondingly complex, subtly differentiated and highly expressive graphics. These visuals not only depict the users' voices, but also serve as controls for their acoustic playback. While the voice-generated graphics thus become an instrument that the users can perform, body-based manipulations of these graphics additionally replay the sounds of the users' voices — thus creating a cycle of interaction that fully integrates the visitors into an ambience consisting of sound, virtual objects and real-time processing.

Messa di Voce lies at an intersection of human and technological performance extremes, melding the unpredictable spontaneity of the unconstrained human voice with the latest in computer vision and speech analysis technologies. Utterly wordless, yet profoundly verbal, Messa di Voce is designed to provoke questions about the meaning and effects of speech sounds, speech acts, and the immersive environment of language.

Golan Levin is an artist, engineer, and composer interested in developing artifacts and events which explore supple new modes of interactive expression. His work focuses on the design of systems for the creation, manipulation and performance of simultaneous image and sound, as part of a more general inquiry into non-verbal communications protocols in cybernetic systems. Levin is Assistant Professor of Electronic Time-Based Art at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh.

Zachary Lieberman is an artist, engineer, and educator whose work is focused on exploring the creative and human uses of technology. He produces installations, on-line works and concerts concerned with the themes of kinetic and gestural performance, interactive imaging and sound synthesis. Lieberman lives and works in New York City, where he teaches courses in audio-visual synthesis and creative image processing at Parsons School of Design.

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