Speculative Terrains Concert

  • Erik Nystrom (Invited speaker)

Activity: Academic and Industrial eventsGuest lecture or Invited talk


Shale (2016, Live, 36ch)
Texton Mirrors (2018, Live, 36ch)
Spheroid (2017, Live, 36ch)

Total duration c. 35 min


The title is a geological metaphor for vertical layering of sound in both physical and spectral space. The distribution of texure motion affects the emphasis on global spatial architecture, on one hand, and a stratified, sedimentary interior, on the other. The work is composed of real-time multichannel synthesis processes, which combine live performance and internal algorithmic structuring.

Texton Mirrors

The neuroscientist Bela Julesz proposed that visual texture perception relies on the processing of aggregates of small elements he termed textons. If we consider the multimodality of spatial sound experience, sonic grains and blots may also be perceived as spatial shapes and colours in cluster formations. In this work, textons are connected to both the physicality of performance and the spatial materiality of texture. They also have an active role in shaping texture since they are connected in a structural network. A texture montage is created by improvised performance in collaboration with machine learning algorithms which cluster and connect morphologies to create a heterogeneous texture. Textures are also controlled and animated by the use of spatial feedback networks and cellular processes. The work is a free form improvisation.


The spine of the work is an irregular loop which synthesises, sequences, deforms and attracts material as it revolves in symbiosis with performance. Developing the piece I was compelled by the idea of a synthetic ecology where unnamed organisms elasticate and reposition categorical conceptions of species, nature, and technology in a posthuman morphogenesis.
Period17 Apr 2018
Held atInstitute of Electronic Music and Acoustics, University of Music and Performing Arts Graz, Austria
Degree of RecognitionInternational