Had a great time in the archives of the media museum this morning with Lewis recording and improvising on the Mellotron housed there. According to the records accompanying this actual machine was used on soundtracking for Doctor Who episodes at somepoint in its history. Excellent to play a home grown and designed noise machine after our various encounters with Russian ones. Some recordings to follow.
For ages I’ve wanted to have a go at building a version of Alexander Graham Bell’s photophone. I had a very informative conversation about this with the artist known as Crank Sturgeon a year or two ago and saw an excellent version Anthony Hall had built using a voice recorder, LED and speaker a couple of months back.
I was prompted into having a good think again today about the photophone by a visitor’s question when discussing some of our current circuits.
“How old is the photoresistor?”
The oldest example I could think of off the top of my head was the use by Bell in the 1880s in the photophone. And so a fun afternoon of building ensued…
This post by Anthill Social was very useful and by the end of the day I had one of our oscillators outputting light via an LED and a photoresistor receiver picking up the sonic information via the light and out through a mini amp. An excellent result! The next step would be to replace the LED with a laser so sound could be sent over longer distance.
As part of thinking and developing one of the elements for our final performance we’ve begun looking at ways in which experimental film makers have used contrasts and tensions between light and dark in there work. We want to begin making some animations to play with our light sensitive oscillators in the next few weeks.
All the works below are posted with original sound tracks, we’ll post some our experiments as we go.
Hans Richter Rhythmus 21
Walther Ruttman Opus 1-4
Len Lye Free Radicals
Stan Brakhage Moth Light
Tony Conrad Flicker
A bit different but another amazing use of light and dark from Michael Vorfeld