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PhD Thesis
 
  In the Ear of the Beholder: Ecology Embodiment and Complexity in Sound Installation.

 
 

Abstract



Through a study of an application of models from Complexity Theory to music, focusing on Artificial Life inspired techniques applied as musical processes, this thesis identifies two important issues that are subsequently explored through the medium of sound installation. Firstly issues pertaining to the application of models from one field of research to another, a concern with transference of metaphor, a grounding of referents. Secondly, through a discussion of the employment of process in music it identifies a need to employ increasingly open generative techniques. Techniques that are not closed in nature but rather open, on both a structural and interpretive level.

This thesis thus puts forward a conception of process, which is open in an ecological sense, in which a level of agency is prescribed to both the technological agents that construct the installations, their environmental context and the human interactants within them. A conception of sound installation that exploits a notion of emergent musical structures as a process of timely perception rather than fixed objects of empirical observation, in which aesthetic meaning comes forth through a conjoined action between the agents the environment and the human interactant. It suggests that the agency of the environment, the installation and the interactant are each contingent on the other, that they all co-define each other and thus discusses an understanding of sound installation from an ecological, enactive and embodied perspective.  
 
 
Please email me if you would like an electronic copy of this.