THE STAR WOMB PROJECT:  MONAD TO NOMAD
  
Installed at The Phoenix Gallery. Chelsea New York. October 2009


BARBARA YONTZ, “THE STAR WOMB PROJECT: MONAD TO NOMAD”, with
Daniel Wolf Savin, astrophysics, Columbia University and Garth Whitcombe, sound
 
This project began over two years ago as my response to the experiments conducted by Daniel Wolf Savin into the physics behind the formation of the first star. I was curious as to how, within a universe suffused with hydrogen atoms, through some processes (one of which Daniel is researching), they became hydrogen molecules and formed stars. Then after over 13 billion years we have all that’s here now.
 
Daniel spoke about his experiments in terms of ‘the birth of the first star’ to me, that imagines the universe as a metaphoric body, the womb. The data generated by the experiments revealed columns and rows of numbers, so I decided to use this data to generate sound and construct a kind of womb as the listening space.hublot replica replica watches replica watches uk
 
Within the gallery a dome 8 feet around is made of hand-made wool felt, hog gut and silk. Designed something like a Mongolian yurt the shape represents living structures of nomadic people as well as a womb or cave. Nashville musician, Garth Whitcombe, created sounds to correspond to five data sets from Daniel’s experiment. His experience with non-western tunings and harmonics create unfamiliar sound and exploit the vibrations in the body of the listener. The felted listening space reduces ambient auditory reverberation. 
 
 I am interested in embodied experience, the relationships between the human body and the materiality of sound and forms. In this piece the wool is tactile, visual, creating a beautiful, cozy space. The sound is disorienting, non-familiar, created by filtering and manipulating natural sounds in editing software, cycling through 5 different speakers. The piece creates an imaginative embodiment of a universe that humans could never really experience, except that after all this time, we do.
 
Speaker 0 corresponds to data set measuring the floating cell voltage
Speaker 1 corresponds to data set measuring both H and H-
Speaker 2 corresponds to data set measuring H-
Speaker 3 corresponds to data set measuring H
Speaker 4 corresponds to data set measuring only background noise

 

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