Junto Project 0557: Condensation Is a Form of Change [repost]

Someone suggested that Suss Müsik repost our contributions to the weekly Disquiet Junto projects, because they enjoy reading the explanations of the tracks. While you’re reading the original post, make sure you check out the other contributors’ works as well.

Condensation is a form of change, but this is only half of the story. Condensation is what happens when vapor transforms to a liquid state; evaporation is what happens when liquid changes back to vaporous form. It’s a constant, cyclical form of reclaiming what was lost.

Michael John Harris, author of the book The End of Absence, has an interesting perspective on loss vs. gain: “My child will never know the value of learning to read a map without GPS. This is the problem with losing lack: it’s nearly impossible to recall its value once it’s gone.“

Some cognitive scientists argue that digital media has rendered our brains into mush. Others believe that, like how the clouds above manage moisture content, it’s simply a matter of displacing one form of cognitive processing with another.

For this Junto project, Suss Müsik explored the cyclical nature of something being there and then not there. The original photo was scanned and rendered to high-contrast, which revealed two distinct patterns: the first a reasonably formed outline comprising a circle (we’ll call that v.1), the other a series of amorphous blobs (v.2).

high-contrast scan of four condensation rings

high-contrast scan of four condensation rings, abstracted

v.1 became the basis for a cyclical riff played on fake bass and a DIY synth device. v.2 was played by tracing a finger across a DIY piezo mic resonator (constructed from old hard drive enclosures) and passing the signal through a Meng Qi Wingie 2. Some sloppy piano was overdubbed; interruptions were designed per interpretation of the “score.”

The piece is titled after Hieronimo Squarciafico, the 15th-century Venetian editor who warned that the invention of the printing press would inhibit humankind’s ability to remember things.

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