AI assisted resurrection of Morton Feldman

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This performative installation is an attempt to use capabilities of artificial intelligence to re-enact one of the composers I regard highly – Morton Feldman – as if he was (still a)live on the stage. Feldman is best known for his longitudinal, seemingly never ending minimalist composition, often for just one single instrument – grand piano. For this performance, I chose to utilise laboratory equipment – two precision dripping banks, alongside a thumb piano. The drips from the banks trigger samples generated by AI model that was trained on Feldman’s body of work. Performer, i.e. whoever takes hold of thumb piano, is asked to ritually circle around the set „altar“ evoking an algorhytmic ritual and establishing a human – computer – spirit/legacy – live improvisation. The performance ends once the connection is no more – when dripping banks are emptied.
While this piece utilises AI it is by no means using most optimised algorhythms, nor does it yield amazing results, mathematically speaking. Rather, it seeks to appropriate the technology and its conceptual base as a starting point for an artistic and aesthetic investigation and conversation.

These are some pictures from the beginning of the installation. The liquid drips onto piezo elements which in turn trigger the sound samples from AI training data set. Instead of building an AI model of Morton Feldman’s style, I attempt a “different kind of magic”. I circle around the object in a ritual manner. I play the thumb piano, attempting to converse with Feldman’s condensed signature. Temporarily, the dead composer is summoned into space. Longitudal, minimalist, tones floating in a vacuum of compositional non-progression. This is how (A)I imagine Feldman’s style.

 

These were shot after circling around for over an hour till the banks were emptied.