OCEAN Design Research Association

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Agora 1


AGORA: Boundary Conditions - 2002
Commissioned by Rom for Kunst: Mesén as
Oslo Central Station 2002

Project Coordination: Dr. Natasha Barrett and Prof. Birger R. Sevaldson
Composition and Programming: Dr. Natasha Barrett
Project Team: Dr. Natasha Barrett, Prof. Birger R. Sevaldson, Tuuli Sotamaa and Michael U. Hensel, with Øyvind Hammer, Are Nielsen, Markus Høy-Pedersen Hanne Marte Holmøy, Sylvia LeSoil, Heidi Leren, Dan Sevaldson, Svein Berge.
Production: Rom for Kunst: Mesén as
Rigging: All Productions, Håkon Klemtsen
Supported by: The Culture Council of Norway,  Lyd og Bilde, Celexa, NoTAM, Abry Design

Boundary Conditions is an installation which transcends the borders between auditory and physical spaces - sound and architecture. The installation spreads above, below and around a bridge, in the centre of the main departure hall at the Oslo Central Station.



Boundary Conditions consists of four elements:
[i] A physical construction consisting of five large surfaces and 150 meters of aluminium tubing.
[ii] A slowly changing sound composition using ambisonics spatialisation projected over eight loudspeakers located above, and four loudspeakers below the bridge.
[iii] Live electronics that turn membranes and aluminium bars into computer controlled acoustic instruments.
[iv] An infrared sensor monitors the activity of people on the bridge as a control for the live electronics.


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Sound, live electronics, and interaction, are controlled by one central computer.

Boundary Conditions can be experienced in many ways – by moving around and through the physical structure, by standing in the centre of the eight loudspeakers above the bridge, or by briefly sampling the space on each journey through the station.

With recent spatialisation techniques it is possible to create a three-dimensional sound environment. In conjunction with physical elements, a new space can be created where sound and architecture reflect each other in time and space. Under this framework grew the idea of the Agora project. The Agora project is a music-theatre work where sound, physical construction and live performance unfold a multi-layered drama.


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