Ouroboros Edition | 4.24 kHz

Ouroboros Edition | 4.24 kHz

TITLE: Ouroboros 4.24 kHz

48″ x 48″ Chromogenic Color Prints | Edition of 3

30″ x 30″ Chromogenic Color Prints | Edition of 10






It has been well over 200 years since the German physicist/musician Ernst Chladni used a violin bow to vibrate plates covered with sand and in so doing discovered what were named after him as the “Chladni Sound Figures”. This work was followed in the `60´s by the Swiss scientist Hans Jenny who expanded Chladni´s approach by using fluids, eventually defining the science of Cymatics. A few notable artists have since used Cymatic sound in their practice by exploring the use of fluids, magnetism and gaseous media. My new work is fueled by my discovery that the exploration of the original Chladni sand patterns has typically been isolated to, and adopted by, university Physics labs merely to study waveform phenomena. I have been deeply moved by the sacred geometry I see in the creation of these sublime figures. Their simple beauty mirrors other ageless forms seen in walking meditation paths, Tibetan mandalas, and figures of the Chinese I Ching. I hoped to further explore this organic minimalism through my practice of live cinema and ambient improvisation.

In the Fall/Winter of 2009 I was an artist in residence at the Banff Centre for the Arts conducting research to expand my work as a Live Cinema and New Media artist. The Banff New Media Institute residency enabled me to experiment with tools and ideas that will drive my artistic practice for many years. Isolated in the bunker of the New Media Lab I started with the origins of Cymatic sound, and through documenting my performance created a bank of visual images of the phenomenon of sound. The analog frequencies became a brush I could use to animate sound with the most simple of media – sand.

Frequency Painting is a body of work that looks deep into the visualization of sound by looking at the sculptural potentials of resonant frequencies. Using a custom designed Analog Modular Synthesizer and several hand-built “wave-driver” speaker instruments, I manipulate audio frequencies to push their signature wave shapes into fine particulate sand. Producing the quality of images displayed in this body of work has taken nearly a year of work and an endurance of mind and body that I could never have imagined. In order to produce the energy necessary to force granular particles into these wonderful patterns I have had to consistently push my sound equipment to deafening levels of close to 120dB, for hours at a time. The sheer violence and cacophony required to create these images is hidden behind their still serenity. Many a wave driver speaker coil has been melted and sacrificed through this process – may they rest in pieces. Creating these works has required an almost meditative balance between the intensity of sound and the delicate movement and patience needed to sweep frequencies and finesse the images I present here. This is truly order from chaos…

Gary James Joynes | August, 2010