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Last update: December 01, 2008, at 10:35 PM

Mini Mobile "Musicing" Workshop & Performance


Art Clay, Media Artist
Dennis Majoe, Hardware Designer


12. July 2006*
Part I: 10:00 - 12:00
Part II: 13:00 - 15:00


ETH Zurich FW A 32.1 (Workshop) & Platzspitz (Performance)

Workshop Concept

The early experiments of Charles Ives’s father with marching bands crossing at intersections and his son’s adoption of it, proves that interest in exploring mobility has fascinated even before electronic devices. As with Ive’s marching band polytonality, we also have the opportunity using modern technologies from the Walkman to the Wearable not only to interact with local surroundings like Ives, but for the first time to do so on a world wide level. Global networking systems such as GPS amongst others have created ubiquitous sensor environments in which we can now make art in and at the same time and run wild making it.

This workshop on Mobil Music addresses the above issues in a practical way. Consisting of a theory and praxis section, the workshop will ground participants in aesthetical and technical issues of Mobil Music and will demonstrate their applicability in a “hands on” manner through being involved in an actual mobile music performance. This is done in that each participant functions as an ensemble member in a place specific performance of China Gates, a new work for custom "GPS Wrist conductors" and a choir of specially tuned hand held gongs.

Most mobile music-works tend to isolate the public due to a focused use of headphones. The resulting isolation of the performer from the audience therewith deprives both sides of the most important function of public performance: social interaction. China Gates also addresses this problem with the concept of engaging pedestrians to create a “random audience” within the public space. This is done by using the possibilities of the GPS Wrist Conductors to synchronize all of the players regardless of where they are geographically and through the acoustic concepts of music making in public spaces which, due to changes in the sound reflection qualities of things in the environment, automatically include those of resonance, reverberation and echo.

The workshop will be held on the ETH Zurich and the performance, regardless of whether conditions, will be held at Platzspitz. The Maxium number of active articipants is 12. There is no charge for active participants, but passive participants must pay a fee of 150 CHF. Active participants are given an Event Pass for the Digital Artweeks, which allows them to go to all lectures and concerts free of charge. Anyone interested in joining the workshop is welcome. No special knowledge of computers or music is needed.

  • The times may vary somewhat.

Concept: Art Clay, ToneText©2006

Information on Instructors:

Art Clay, Ensemble Direction
Is the artist and the director of the workshop. He has been working intensively in Mobile Music and ARt for the last five years, developing new applications for innovative technologies developed at the ETH Zurich. He has taught and lectured throughout Europe and North America in Sound Art, Mobile Music & Art as well as Media Enhanced Performance. He is the Artistic Director of the Digital Art Weeks held in Zurich each year in conjuction with the ETH.

Dennis Majoe, Hard & Software Design
He has a PhD in Navigation related Electronic systems and has worked extensively in the design of a variety of motion and orientation sensing systems and computer generated environments including 3D audio. He is director of MASC, an innovative electronics and computer design company active in the field of wireless communications having designed GPS and GPRS Bluetooth systems, RISC based wearable computing platforms and large real time motion sensing systems for the CG industry. In addtion to his activities at MASC his is as a researcher on the ETH Zurich for the Computer Systems Department.

MaxTalk: a Users Group

Art Clay, Direction

MaxTalk is a tutored Users Group for Max, MSP, Jitter, Cyclops and other third party software for the Max environment. In addition to discussing software use, a large range of related topics to media art are also discussed and demonstrated. These have included in the past, MIDI, Audio & Video Hardware, Image and Pitch Tracking, Multi Computer Networking, Sensors and Micro Controllers. The Users Group is for musicians and artist, who like to work with computer mediated and hybrid art forms. Short talks by celebrated max artists and developers are an integral part of each of the MaxTalk evenings. For newbies, the evenings have always started with some basic element of the Max environment and for seasoned artists it has ended with more complex uses. A series of MaxTalk ‘workshop patches’ are developed for every task discussed and are available for downloading along with other information pertaining to the evening at the Digital Art Weeks website.

To take part in the evening talks please send an email to in order to make a reservation stating your name and that you would like attend.

More information concerning the MaxTalk is obtainable here:

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Page last modified on December 01, 2008, at 10:35 PM