Proposal for a sound work for Life on a Leaf


A process for developing a site-specific sound component for the house is to some degree dependent on being able to respond to the site/finished architecture. Completely designing a piece from plans is simply not possible. I would therefore propose a process which allows the maximum flexibility for making decisions about the piece once the structure has been completed.
The piece would have 4 components to it:
1) sensors placed at an outdoor location which would monitor environmental conditions such as temperature, sound, wind, etc.
2) sensors placed inside the house, which would monitor temperature, domestic sounds, etc.
3) An indoor array of speakers (like those we have discussed in the context of other works) which is sufficiently distributed to create the feeling of being surrounded by small sounds when one is in this location of the house.
A primary spot of interest for me would be the bridge part of the space, with the many tall struts on either side. This array would be connected to the outside sensors, and the sounds it makes would be influenced by these sensors.
4) An outdoor array of speakers – possibly fit into architectural panels – which in some way mirror those inside the house – these would be designed to help create a connection between the outdoor nature and the indoor architecture – so the siting of this should reflect this connection. These speakers would be connected to the interior sensors, and would be influenced by their readings.

Decker is a sound artist who is working as professor at the Art & Technology and sound departments at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.