Inside-The-Oscillator is a sound-installation based on acoustic feedback through multiple speakers, microphones and metal plates.

It consists of eight discreet sets of a microphone, a speaker and an aluminium plate. All eight sets are being hung together in one physical space. With each set, the speaker returns an amplified and slightly modified audiosignal from the microphone (most microphones are contact-microphones attached to aluminium plates). The microphone picks up, through the air and the aluminium plate, the sound of it's corresponding speaker. Thus, a feedback oscillation can occur. This oscillation is mostly defined by the frequency characteristics of the aluminium plate and by the physical space in which everything resides.

In this physical space everything comes together. Here, the eight feedback oscillations of the eight microphone-speaker-plate sets mix and influence eachother. Here, also, the oscillations are influenced by other factors: Environmental sounds, presence of bodies in the physical space and air-movements which alter the position of the aluminium plates, amongst others.


23.02.2006 - 26.03.2006
Part of duo-exhibition Space Effects with Edo Paulus and Niels Vis at Expodium, Utrecht (NL).

13.05.2005 - 20.05.2005
Solo-exhibition at OKNO [Koolmijnenkaai], Brussels (BE). This exhibition has been realized with support from The Mondriaan Foundation.

09.10.2004 - 31.10.2004
Part of the group-exhibition The Anatomy Of The Now at Arti et Amicitiae, Amsterdam (NL).

Exhibited at a Lost & Found evening in Loods 6, Amsterdam (NL).

09.05.2004 - 27.05.2004
Solo-exhibition in Kristin's Keller, Amsterdam (NL).

Detailed info:

One evening I met a woman. We had an entertaining discussion.

She said:
Richard Wagner and John Cage are both knights in entering the Big Black Abbys. The Big Unknown. Cage was a very smart knight, though, because Wagner threw himself unprotected and mercilessly into the Big Unknown, whereas Cage made a structure within which the material (the sounds) are allowed to fall into the Big Unknown. If you like you can follow the sounds falling into it, but the structure functions as your livesaver.

I said:
You could say Wagner was more heroic because more daring. You might also say that of Curt Cobain. But then you could say that of anybody jumping mindlessly, like when flying into the WTC. Cage had balance.

She said:
It can be dangerous. In the sixties and seventies you had hordes of people diving into the Big Unknown. Many got lost. Some experienced company is usefull.

Also was said:
You can only fall into the Big Unknown, really.
You need faith to do so.

I said:
I want to make something that is like nature. I like nature for its harmony: It has no intention of meaning. It is content with its state. It does what it has to do. (It is in balance.) The better the likeness, the better the work. But: One never succeeds completely. Already the act of making such a thing is an expression of wanting and, thus, unlike nature. You could call this paradox, in a romantic way, the Human Inability (this is not a name! I'm sure there's an apropiate name for this).

The benefit of an installation, opposed to a performance, is that the audience for themselves can decide how much attention they want to give to it, how close they want to get, how much they want to get involved, what timeduration they want to pay attention. It's non-oppressive. Or at least less oppressive than a performance usualy is.
I want to make things that are like nature. That have the characteristics of nature. Nature doesn't want to imply a meaning or a message. It doesn't want to come towards the spectator. It stays on itself and does it's own thing. It doesn't protest to its surroundings, it doesn't criticize its environment. It surrely gets influenced/reacts/interacts with its situation, but in a way of accepting and incorporating. I want my work to be like that.

In this perspective it suits very much to make installations. They, almost intrinsically, have a lot of these characteristics. Performances can surely also have these characteristics, but here in western society performance is so quickly expected to be an expression of the self.

The expectation of people towards installations is very different than to performances, offcourse. I do not want to fight that. There is no reason for me to do that. I feel better accepting and incorporating those kind of expectations.

The analytical (the intentional segregation of functions) vs. The physical (the self-evident and inevitable integration of functions)

Digital media / classical computer-programming is very much occupied with the analyzing of a situation, using the reason to get a hermetical, logical structure. A model of the situation. In this process the situation is clearly split into separate functions. Each function deals with one aspect of the situation. Together, the functions make up the model of the reality.

In the physical realm each physical object fulfills many functions simultaneously. Some known to us and some unknown.
The sound-installation Inside-The-Oscillator is an attempt to get away from this intentional, hermetical reasoning and to utilize the elegant characteristic of the physical realm.

Some examples:
- The air is a medium for the sound-waves to travel through. At the same time air turbulence make the aluminium plates move.
- The aluminium plates act as resonators which amplify certain frequencies and attenuate others. At the same time the plates pick up different waves when changing position.
- Human bodies moving through the installation influence the travel of soundwaves in the space. But the moving bodies also make sounds which are picked up by the microphones and, thus, influence the audio-signal.

These examples are 'known' and intended functions of the physical objects. But Inside-The-Oscillator is also sensitive to many unknown and unintended functions.

Technical stuff used:

- 8 aluminium plates (1000 * 500 * 1 mm.)
- 6 piezo contactmics
- 2 small membrane condensator mics
- 8 mic preamps
- 8 hardware compressors
- max/msp software on a mac for the sound processing (variable delay & eq)
- 4 stereo amplifiers
- 6 speakers
- 2 low frequency transducers

Inspirations for this project:

David Tudor
Felix Hess
Nicolas Collins
Alvin Lucier
Resonant Neuron Synthesis by Jurgen Michaelis

Thank you:

Kristin Maurer
Marien HogerHeijde
Frank Gorter
Nathalie Bruys
Jan Robert Leegte
Annemie Maes
Jeroen Uytterndaele
Aymeric Mansoux
In Kristin's Keller, Amsterdam (NL). (2004)
In Kristin's Keller, Amsterdam (NL). (2004)
From "Electronic Music: Systems, Techniques, and Controls" (1983) by Allen Strange
At a Lost & Found event in Loods 6, Amsterdam (NL). (2004)
Part of the group-exhibition The Anatomy Of The Now at Arti et Amicitiae, Amsterdam (NL). (2004)
Part of the group-exhibition The Anatomy Of The Now at Arti et Amicitiae, Amsterdam (NL). (2004)
Floorplan of Inside-The-Oscillator at the group-exhibition The Anatomy Of The Now at Arti et Amicitiae, Amsterdam (NL). (2004)
At OKNO [Koolmijnenkaai], Brussels (BE). (2005)
At OKNO [Koolmijnenkaai], Brussels (BE). (2005)
At Expodium, Utrecht (NL). (2006)
At Expodium, Utrecht (NL). (2006)
Floorplan of Inside-The-Oscillator at Expodium, Utrecht (NL). (2006)