Ars Electronica 1991
Festival-Program 1991
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Festival 1979-2007



'Arthur Elsenaar Arthur Elsenaar

As we all know the computer is a differential machine working with ones and zeros. When you want to have a total view of this system, you could integrate it. The ones and zeros are then transformed into a tube. The attitude towards the observer determines if it's a 1 or a 0. In the digital age you can see the world as built up from these ones and zeros; try to look at it as built from different (perspective) views of tubes. Go into the material (the pcb) in one second (24 pages) and see the digital become analogue. The dimensions of all zeros and ones in this book are related I:e (2.71828..) because the most efficient number system should be based on the power of e. Closest to e is three; so the book came out in 23 = 8 bits or one byte. What's in logic…?
My intention with the work "LEAVES" is to make clear to people that the massive use of technology is causing environmental pollution. In other words you and I are responsible for it by using technology. In today's society it is very hard, if not impossible, to not use technology; society has become addicted (dependent) on its own creations. Paracelsus, the scientist, said: "Anything that's too much, becomes a poison". So relativity should be applied to pollutional questions; it doesn't matter what you dump in nature, it depends on the amount compared to the other. Before nature was the dominant factor in the world, but now man is. The leaves in this work stand for nature, the attitude of a person towards it for the damaging; the closer man gets the wilder it shakes (Leave!!) and the more it rustles. But when you gently wave your hand over it, it makes a singing sound.

The basic principle of this work "LEAVES" is the converting of a (human) movement into another (mechanical) movement. The method I use is very straightforward and simple. The movement-detector can be seen as a small radar; the device sends out a continuous electro-magnetic wave and at the same time receives the reflected waves. Because of this simultaneous transmit/receive operation the send out and reflected waves have a phase relation or are 'in phase' with one another. But when there is a moving object in the controlled space, the reflected wave isn't in phase anymore with the send out wave. So the phase-difference is directly related to the object's movement. And the closer a moving object the larger the amplitude of the phase-signal. This phase-signal is then amplified through an ordinary audio-amplifier and fed into some big woofer loudspeakers which complete the movement-conversion. Throw over some dried-out (for the rustling sound!) leaves …
General: In my latest work there is a consequent appearance of a participant, this isn't just a choice, but a consequence of my perception of reality.

The "DIGILOG" book is a pcb-like flipbook containing a turning tube over the pages. It is reversable too; you can flip from a 1 to a 0 or vice versa. See also the text "What's in it" which "sits" in the tube that is holding the pages together.

Tracks in the station: An acoustic journey of being sandwiched between two passing trains. In the station at the counter in the departure hall you see the trains passing each other. Synchronized to the visuals you hear the singing track sounds at each side of you. This is symbolized through two piles of stones representing the tracks and covering the speakers.

In this work the participant isn't a human but two machines interacting with each other's sound. The human is only the observer experiencing the occasion.

The TIE/d-up: or – if you could hear what you're saying … – A special-made tie that records immediately when a person is talking to it and plays it back instantly and out of context. So you're immediately confronted with yourself! But what really kills a person is the confrontation with its first spontaenous reaction which is recorded and play-backed too!! To be honest, it was made for the student/teacher-relationship (who ties-up whom?). The original name of this work was "ST(R)OPDAS" what is a merge of the dutch for "tie" and German for "stop that". The erotic shape of the horn was chosen because of the dutch work for talking rubbish (= lullen) what is directly translated as cocking.