4614 notes of a song

Starting point

The choice of the theme wasn’t difficult. I was always interested in music. I studied music for 8 years in my childhood. I haven’t been enough motivated to be a musician, (I was motivated in drawing) but my friends were, and I experienced very soon that I have the same temperament like them. I think, artists are similar, whatever they do. As a starting point I was thinking about sharing this idea with my audience, that the connection between the many fields of art is the artist itself. Artists tend to analyse facts and happenings and then they react to them. Every artist has different tool or tools to make their ideas interesting, but the motivation is the same.

The other reason I’m interested in music that my hearing is getting worse. I’ve really worried about my hearing. I imagined many times how people live without hearing and what things would I miss most, if I’m deaf. Music is definitely one of these things. During the project I’ve attended the audiology. I will have a hearing aid on 30 of June and probably I will have an operation in this year.

Research

I made an initial research about the different fields of art. I collected the basic ones and I started to collect symbols to explore them.

I made a research about sound, and how is it working. It was very interesting. There’s no sound without a material that transfer it. Only in vacuum there are no sounds. It makes me remember that just a few planet has an atmosphere, and the universe is mostly silent. Giant stars can explode without any noise. The sound definitely is a very special and rare thing in the universe and it has a material and shape.

I made artist research as well. I was especially interested in participatory art and the works of Ben Gates. Finally, I found a work of Rauschenberg in Modern Tate that determined my work. I found it when I looked for an idea how to explore movement on my work. The title of the work is ‘Shades’. The work is from layers of plexiglasses with prints on them. When I walked by the work I had that feeling that the patterns are moving, the layers are sliding on each other. This work gave me the idea to use perspexes.

Ideas and concepts

In my first concept I planned to explore music on an MDF board by painting a song. I’ve imagined that I will explore every single sound of the song by lines. During consultations I found interest in moulding the sounds, because Tom made me remember that materials have different sounds. In this case the final work would be more than 3 meters long, and it would contain more than 4 thousand mouldings.

On the plexiglasses I planned to refer to other fields of art based on movement, like dance or cinema.

Experimenting in music

At this point I had no clear idea how to explore the theme, but I was sure I will need a song. I collected and listened a lot of old and new songs. I analysed them by many point of views. I tried to imagine how will the songs look. I looked for big contrasts in instruments and in the volume of the tunes and interesting meanings in the lyrics.

I found the ‘Bring me to life’ of Evanescence and Linkin Park perfect, because the voices are different, there are many interesting instruments in the song and the lyrics is prefect too.

I looked for existing music sheets. I thought, that I will collect different music sheets and make a complete one from them. Unfortunately, I experienced that there aren’t music sheets that contain everything. Even the official music sheet of the song contains only the female voice, the male voice, the piano and the guitars, although there are vocals, violins, cellos, double basses and a drum in the song.

At this point I decided to write by hearing my own music sheets. In the song there are 4 voices, a female voice, a male voice and 2 vocals. It’s played by 7 different instruments: electric guitar, bass guitar, drum, piano, violin, cello and double bass.

I started with the piano and the singing voices, because these were the easiest to hear.

I struggled with the violin, the cello and the double bass, because these instruments are silent compared with the electric instruments. I looked for sound tracks about only these instruments in the song, and I found all the sound tracks of the song. I was very enthusiastic about these sound tracks, because it makes possible to show how many sounds are in the song.

I never played on drum, and I never wrote drum sheets, so I had to investigate how to do it. I studied the parts of the drum set and I listened videos of drum players to be able to recognise the sound of the different drums.

On the traditional music sheets, it’s easy to present the sounds but it’s complicated to write the rhythm. I experienced when I wrote the drum sheets that it has been easy to write there the beats. The rhythm of the guitars is very fast. These experiences gave me the idea to design an own music sheet especially to write the guitar. On these music sheets I was able to sign every sound and rhythm with a single dot. On my final work I already wrote these sheet in the official way.

It was a big challenge to write the music sheets. I found and wrote down 4614 sounds on 33 pages of music sheets.

Experimenting in performance art

Meanwhile I wrote the music sheets I tried to keep working on the other fields of art. I have experiences in more of them, but I’ve always had problems with performance art. This is the reason that I started trials. I made situation in that I had to perform things. I organised a flashmob and I made records about myself as I’m singing.

I was sure that any result can give me essential experiments, but finally the trials gave me far more new ideas than I’ve waited. I experienced how much is difficult to make a record about a voice. Although I knew it, I understood it only when I made my own records. This fact gave me the idea to change my mind about the theme, and explore in my work only the music.

I collected all the amazing features of sounds and music. It has a material, it has shape. In a song there are far more sounds that we are able to recognise. We hear only few sounds, and we just feel the others. It’s impossible to make a perfect record about a song. It isn’t the same like live music. It means that every sound is a unique and unrepeatable thing. When a song finished, it’s possible to sing it again, but it will never be exactly the same again. Music is free. You can’t get it, or keep it.

Final piece

This is the reason that I explored music by a shadow. The shadow made by the music sheets has an image. This image seems to be the same, but we know, that the changing lights around the work will change the shadow too.

I explored the song in 3 layers. I shared the sounds in 3 groups. The voices are on the same sheet. I placed this sheet on the top to explore the tendency, that we listen to the speech first. The loud instruments are on the second layer. It contains the music sheets of the guitars and the drum. These modern instruments are loud and clearly recognisable by everyone. The third perspex explores the classic instruments, the piano, the violin, the cello and the double bass. This is almost hidden between the other layers as the instruments are hidden too in the song.

The images of the layers are different. I shared the instruments in these categories by the style of them, but even I was very surprised how much the images explore the style of the sounds. The layer of the voices shows efficiently the rhythm of the speech. The loud guitars have covered most the perspex, this is the most dominant layer. The arcs of the third layer explore the style of these classic instruments.

Develop

I’m satisfied with the result. The only thing I would change is the second layer. When I bought the layers I asked transparent sheets, but somehow I’ve got different shades. The first and the third perspexes are slightly green, while the middle one is absolutely transparent. I like the shade of the green layers because the pattern is less visible on them. If I had more time, I would have made the middle layer again.

I’m sorry about the lot of great ideas I’ve had. I think there is still many opportunities in this theme.

Health and safety

I worked in the 3D workshop with the laser cutter. It’s important to not open it when it’s working and asking help from a technician.

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