Cryptic Glasgow-Cove Park Residency  

Documentation

Intro

 

March 2019, I spent the whole month working in Scotland.  The Cove-Park and Glasgow residency, organized by Cryptic and CMMAS in conjunction with the British Council, has been fruitful and very important in my artistic career. I can say that it marked a new starting point in my artistic career. First, what was this residency about?  The month-long residency: Three weeks of intense work at Cove-Park on my art project and one week in Glasgow to exchange experiences with the art community in this city. 

In this document, I will make a description of the work done during this residency, then I will make a description of the creative process and finally I will give my conclusions and thanks.

Learn more about Cryptic-Glasgow Producers here: http://www.cryptic.org.uk/

Work done in Cove-Park

 

My project. Description, Progress and Results.

 

During my residency in Cove-Park I worked on my project "Gestures of Light". Broadly speaking: this project seeks the convergence between four disciplines: musical composition, experimental photography, real-time visuals, and music performance.  Next, I will describe the work done during three weeks.

Experimental photography

 

During my three-week residency at Cove-Park I took a series of 53 photographs.

 

The creative process was as follows:

1. The photos were taken inside Cove-Park.

2. I worked on developing and debugging the algorithm to process the images to obtain new images.

3. I created the series of 53 photographs by processing the images taken at Cove-Park using the algorithm. Here I show in small format the final work: the series of 53 photographs created at Cove-Park.

The music

 

During the three weeks of residence at Cove-Park I composed,  40 minutes of original music from scratch.

 

The instruments used were: 

  • Prophet Rev2 synthesizer with keyboard

  • My modular synthesizer

  • 0-coast

  • FireFace 800 Audio Interface

  • Genelec 30-B Speakers

  • Recording in Protools 12.

The creative process was as follows:

 

1. Realization of a patch in the modular synthesizer, the 0-coast and the Prophet (creation of new sounds and auto-generative musical sequences).

2. Improvising (seeing the mountains)

3. Recording

 

This sequence of steps was repeated several times in the same order until the stereo recording was completed.  A sample of the recorded work is given below. Due to the fact that this work will be published in a disc soon, it is not possible to publish in this site the complete work.

The video

 

During my three-week residency at Cove-Park, I conducted experiments in order to make the convergence between photos and music in a video.  This work is in process, however, below is a sample of the progress made during the residency.

 

The tools used were:

 

  • Max-MSP-Jitter 8

  • Alienware Computer

  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 GPU

  • Sound interface: Native Instruments 6

The performance (setup)

 

During my residency at Cove-Park I created a useful setup for live presentations of works containing: real-time visuals and electronic music. This setup can now be used by other artists as well.  The setup will be described in detail in an article to be published soon. 

Next steps

 

The "Gestures of Light" work is still in progress.  The following steps will be taken to complete the project:

 

1) Mixing of the music in a multichannel version: octophonic.

2) Work on the visuals.

 

Both tasks will be done during my next artistic residency at CMMAS, in Morelia, Mexico in May 2019.  Once the work is finished, there will be public presentations of it.

Work done in Glasgow

 

The last week of the Scottish residency took place in Glasgow. At that time I did two main activities: net-working and giving a workshop to create real-time visuals using Jitter software on Max MSP. Below I will describe both activities.

 

 

Net-working

 

Concerning net-working, I had the opportunity to speak with professors of music composition and music technology at the Royal Conservatoire of Scottland and the University of Glasgow.

Jitter's workshop

 

On 28 and 29 March, I gave an intensive workshop at the University of Glasgow. The workshop: Introduction to the Creation of Visuals in Real Time using Jitter lasted 8 hours per day. The students learned to use the Jitter tool from 0 to create their own visual contents. Among the audience of this workshop were art students from Glasgow University, a lecturer from the same institution and also engineers.  This link shows the agenda of the workshop.

https://www.sabinacovarrubias.com/workshops

The work experience at Cove-Park

 

What is it like to create music at Cove-Park? 

 

Creating art surrounded by nature

 

Working in the midst of nature, isolated from the distractions of everyday life has undoubtedly been a factor that has allowed me to be quite productive; why?

Nature: inspiration, strength and relaxation.

 

As a multimedia artist using a computer, there are parts of my work that can sometimes become very stressful, for example: when I am programming and I inevitably encounter "bugs" or technical difficulties. At Cove-Park, every time my mind tensed, I contemplated the landscape.  Just looking at the mountains, or taking a short walk was enough to relax my mind and to gain strength again. The contemplation of the landscape allowed me to have a state of constant relaxation and this, in turn, allowed me to have a high performance: daily working days of 7 to 10 hours.

Cove-Park lives in my music work

 

To make music surrounded by a landscape caused that this land, literally, got inside my work.  The sounds of Cove are somehow represented in my musical work; for instance: We had a week of storm: a strong wind that never stopped: it was a powerful sound I had never heard before. I also heard frogs, cows, and water, a lot of water: running through the ground, falling from the sky, dripping from the branches. No doubt I can say that all that moisture permeated the music, as well as the life that grows on every rock, on every trunk of Cove, even on the roof of my studio.

Learn more about Cove Park here: https://covepark.org/

Daily coexistence with other artists, an enriching experience.

 

Living with other artists during my residency at Cove-Park was important for my career as well. Each of the artists in residence at Cove-Park that I got to know opened a window for me, through which I can see new horizons. The visual work of Alba G. Corral 

and from Push 1 stop [Cadie Desbiens-Desmeules] & Wiklow [Michael Dean] has inspired me to create more generative visuals. The conversations with Kian McEvoy have opened new horizons for me to make interact my Jitter visuals with the world of voltage. The work of Jorge Luis Crowe, has generated curiosity that motivated me to explore the world of Arduino (I already did my first Arduino after his work motivated me to do it). The work and conversations with Hakeem Adam helped me to explore the current electronic-music background from Ghana and the creation of holograms. The coexistence work of Madeleine Flynn & Tim Humphrey let me see the world of possibilities when working with Artificial Intelligence; thanks to them I am also inspired to compose a work for Moog synthesizer and trumpet.  The coexistence with Daniel Magee at the end of the working days was always pleasant and I could discover the instruments that he used.  I also discovered new secrets and new tools to compose music thanks to Alex Menzies [aka Alex Smoke]; Robbie Thomson's music has made me discover new ways to "write" for the kick drum and made me enjoy "digital" sound from which I had detached a little.  Heather Lander's work has motivated me to eventually make some art-installation using water.

 

In addition to the works of these artists, the coexistence with them was very pleasant; cooking, chatting, jumping frogs, walking in the mountains, everything was also important to be able to work with inspiration.

Conclusion

 

The impact that this residence had on my career has been very important because it allowed me to pause, do introspective work and create freely without any external demands of any kind. I want to emphasize that it has been very important that Cryptic and Cove-Park have given us full freedom and confidence to do our job. The fact that there were no external demands contributed to my being able to find my own voice.

Acknowledgements

 

I express my gratitude for this experience to the entire Cryptic-Glasgow team and to CMMAS. Special thanks to Cathy Boyd, Rodrigo Sigal and Silvia de la Cueva for their trust and support of my work. Thanks to the sponsors, because thanks to their support there is more art in this world- Thanks to the Cove-Park team that made me feel at home. Once again to the Cryptic team for their impressive organization and efficiency. (And also for helping me with my heavy luggage.....) Thanks to Louise Harris for the welcome and support at the Jitter workshop in Glasgow University. Thanks to my fellow artists for the moments of conviviality and wonder. And finally thank to Julia Sepulveda without whose support I would not have been able to win this opportunity.

Thank you <3,  Sabina. 

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© 2020 Sabina Covarrubias