SOUND, SHADOW AND LIGHT: generating the experience of a natural environment
AuthorALSOP, P; Borda, A; Williams, J
Source TitleGENERATIVE ART 2016
PublisherGenerative Design Lab, Politecnico di Milano University, Italy Generative Art Lab, Domus Argenia
AffiliationVCA & MCM Collected Works
Document TypeConference Paper
CitationsALSOP, P., Borda, A. & Williams, J. (2016). SOUND, SHADOW AND LIGHT: generating the experience of a natural environment. Soddu, C (Ed.) Colabella, E (Ed.) GENERATIVE ART 2016, pp.366-376. Generative Design Lab, Politecnico di Milano University, Italy Generative Art Lab, Domus Argenia.
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Sound, Shadow and Light is a generative program that seeks to replicate the visual and aural experience of a natural environment in a designed space that responds to the inhabitants of that space. In a natural environment there are opposing senses of intimacy and expanse, bounded only by the horizon. While each natural environment may have different or unique elements in it, Sound, Shadow and Light explores the hypothesis that just a few of these elements may create a sense, or experience, of being in a natural environment. It will do this by defining and then distilling the prototypical elements of an environment to form an essence, a small set of events that may be influenced by the inhabitant to create a mental and emotional experience of being in a natural environment. Sound, Shadow and Light bases its approach on the assumption that the natural environment is mostly static with predictable sounds, and that this causes the inhabitant to ignore most of the events in the environment. For this reason, it focuses on replicating the moving elements of an environment. By creating subtle and unexpected changes and introducing occasional unexpected events it is designed to create an experience of a natural environment with reduced overt interruption to the actual environment. The process for doing this is based on the concept of the garden as a place of simultaneous rest and subtle activity, in which expected events may occur at unexpected times; rhythmically repeated events occur separated by long periods, thus forming a sense of long structure; and occasional unexpected events that have no precedent. An interactive program is used to generate natural and synthetic images and sound; it takes pre- existing images and sounds, arranges them in groups for playback, subverts these groupings, and introduce synthetic versions of the sounds and images. This process is being developed to create virtual outdoor environments for people unable to venture into natural environments, as a demonstrator of responsive virtual environments, and as a platform for art-oriented projects.
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