Johnny Tomasiello- A System for the Synchronous Emergence of Music Derived from Movement


Abstract :


A System for the Synchronous Emergence of Music Derived from Movement is an immersive audio and visual work whose purpose is to define and explore a relationship between the movement of an artist’s hand (brush or pen, etc.) and a generative interactive computer-assisted compositional and performance system that is directly informed by those movements in real-time.


The system was initially designed for a specific artist who creates kinetic visual artworks in a live setting (digital paintings), in collaboration with performing musicians. At first, the idea was to offer the artist a self contained generative music system, granting them independence as an element of the work, while allowing complete focus on their visual practice.


The concept evolved to focus specifically on how a visual artist was, or could be, influenced by music, and how a reciprocally responsive real-time generative system would affect the outcome of a visual piece.


The project collects movement data through a non invasive MUGIC sensor tracking motion on the pitch, yaw, and roll axis. The melodic and rhythmic content are derived from, and constantly influenced by, the user’s movements.


The data are used to generate real-time and interactive music compositions, which are simultaneously experienced by the user, influencing choices, and ultimately the final visual works, while simultaneously presenting a live immersive audio and visual piece.


The data is sonified though a patch built in Max 8, which manages the sound generation and DSP, and most importantly, is where the translation from movement to music is defined.

Bio :


Johnny Tomasiello is a multidisciplinary artist and composer living and working in NYC.


Tomasiello approaches sound making not only through his choice of instruments, but by pushing the technical limitations of the musical systems employed, and questioning their validity and truth. His work is malleable, and is informed by extensive research into history and technology, neuroscience, and political movements. He uses that knowledge to develop significant, collaborative works that examine new means of production.


Evidence, education and research are integral aspects of Johnny’s projects as seen, for example, in his exploration of how humans interact with, and are affected by, the external world on a physiological level.


He started his academic career as a painter. Interested in the connections between science and art, he completed a Bachelor of Science degree in cognitive science/ psychophysics and was awarded a research grant at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of NJ, Medical School. His thesis was entitled "Musical Stimuli and its Effects on Human Physiology". In a broad sense, that research was the beginning of a lexicon for sound and color, defining auditory and visual stimuli through its quantitative effects on human physiology.


He has looked to the shared characteristics between art and science for inspiration. His personal work balances social and historical references with allegorical storytelling, designed to provoke awareness and critical thinking. He has performed his work live and organizes performances and public workshops.


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