SIGGRAPH Presentation

Posted in Announcement, Uncategorized on June 11th, 2022 by admin

30 second trailer for my upcoming talk at SIGGRAPH 2022 in Vancouver

Scan processing is an analog electronic image manipulation technology, typified by the Scanimate (1969) and the Rutt/Etra Video Synthesizer (1973), which revolutionized commercial animation and inspired a generation of experimental video artists. This paper looks at the histories, functions, and uses of scan processing and proposes a contemporary reenactment.

TUE 9 AUG 2:15pm – 3:45pm PDT: Art Papers_Roundtable Session: Visions: CV and Image Capture

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Sounds of Futures Passed workshop results

Posted in Uncategorized on August 18th, 2021 by admin

“SOUNDS of FUTURES PAST: Media Archaeology, Design Fiction, and Electronic Sound” workshop results now online!

This online workshop for the Pixelache #BURN_SLOW event concentrated on creating prototypes for instruments of the future by looking at the Media Archaeology of instrument building from the past. Featuring design fictions by: Montse Torreda & Giada Totaro, Anze Bratus & Edoardo Piroddi, and Diana Lelis, Milda Ziemane, & Krista Dintere.

Explore them here:

Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio residency

Posted in Uncategorized on June 28th, 2018 by admin

Between 26 May and 03 June 2018, I undertook an intensive residency at the Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio with the goal of using their legendary EMS Synthi 100 analog synthesizer with my Vector Synthesis software to create a new set of audiovisual experiments.

Here, I present the videos in a reversed order.

Vector Synthesis: Liquid Iron Lattice (Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio IV)

Liquid Iron Lattice is the fourth and final composition created during my residency at the Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio, using their amazing EMS Synthi 100. The video integrates both the Vector Synthesis Pure Data code and the analog waveforms and processing of the Synthi 100 to maximum advantage — a true hybrid digital/analog synthesis.

For this work, I created a simple 2D grid raster rotating in 3D space. I then applied to this grid a scan processed photograph of a simple architectural detail in the building where I am staying. The brightness values in this image push the 2D grid upwards, with a number of sine wave signals from the Synthi 100 responsible for the fluid motions of the grid. These signals were then displayed as vectors by my modified Vectrex monitor. They were also sent back into the filters and spring reverbs of the Synthi 100 for modification, and were then summed with the signals sent to the Vectrex, resulting in a variety of generative feedback effects.

Filming “Liquid Iron Lattice”, Radio Belgrade Electronic studio, 30 May 2018

Vector Synthesis: Spomenik Surface Treatment (Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio III-A)

Spomenik Surface Treatment is the third patch of my week long residency on the EMS Synthi 100 located at Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio. After an exciting visit to the Kosmaj Spomenik south of Belgrade, I decided to create a Modernist monument of my own from sound and light. I have used my Vector Synthesis library for Pure Data to make Rutt-Etra style scan processing of a photograph of the Kosmaj sculpture, which is then displayed on a hacked Vectrex monitor using audio signals. The luminosity of a 3×3 pixel wide scanning area controls the brightness and displacement of the oscilloscope beam, with rotation and perspective added to the figure. The audio signal has been further processed after creating the image through the resonant low and high pass filters and the spring reverb of the Synthi 100.

Monument to Partisan anti-Fascist fighters at Kosmaj, Serbia. 29 May 2018

Vector Synthesis: Cubic Rotational Drone (Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio II)

Cubic Rotational Drone is the second patch of my week long residency on the EMS Synthi 100 located at Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio. The cube is created by reading the data tables for the three axes (X, Y, Z) in my Vector Synthesis library for Pure Data with a ramp oscillator of the Synthi 100. Other Synthi 100 ramps are used to modulate the size of the cube and the rotations, all set at various near-harmonic relationships to the main oscillator. The Random Voltage Generator of the Synthi 100 makes small variations in the frequencies of those ramps. The lines are a bit rough due to the irregularities in the analog waveforms. Two signals (X and Y) are then sent to be displayed on the Synthi 100 oscilloscope, a Tektronix 5000 series modular rack.

Rendering “Cubic Rotational Drone” on the Tektronix oscilloscope. 28 May 2018.

Vector Synthesis: Mean Variance Brushstrokes (Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio I)

Mean Variance Brushstrokes is the first patch of my week long residency on the EMS Synthi 100 located at Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio. The video raster is created by the ramp oscillators of the Synthi 100, whose frequencies are controlled by the instrument’s Random Voltage Generator. The signals are also run through the two spring reverbs, which are added to the raster signal and give the curved deformations seen here.

This video employs my Vector Synthesis library for Pure Data to make Rutt-Etra style scan processing of a video image, which is then displayed on an XY display using audio signals. The luminosity of the pixels being scanned controls the brightness and displacement of the oscilloscope beam. Additional modulations of the beam by audio signals create the other visual effects seen here. The display monitor is a hacked Vectrex game console, and a version of the same audio signal sent to the monitor can heard in the audio track.

Meeting Synthi 100 on the first day at the Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio. 26 May 2018.

Bonus Track: EMS Synthi 100 Oscillographics [Radio Belgrade Electronic Studio]

This is a series of audiovisual X/Y oscilloscope patches for the EMS Synthi 100 at the Radio Belgrade Electronic Music Studio, visualized on the Tektronix 5000 series modular rack oscilloscope. They were programmed to run autonomously without any human control. Most of them use two or three oscillators tuned to a close harmonic, and small changes in the frequencies (including temperature drift!) will make large changes in the image/sound. A couple use the Synthi 100’s low pass filters as well. All are based on Ron Pellegrino’s laser designs from “The Electronic Arts of Sound and Light” (1983).


My endless gratitude is extended to Svetlana Maras for pulling this whole thing together, and to Igor Stangliczky for his boundless hospitality.