made a special appearance as a sound installation at the
Burning Man in Black Rock Desert, Nevada in August 2019. The work was realized at the Finnish camp's,
Steam of Life's sauna, where the mechanical soundscape created it's own tranquil atmosphere to
give the visitors a break from the noises of the Playa.
photo - Hannu Rytky
In just around the corner by choreographer Iina Taijonlahti and sound designer Atte Olsonen, the foresight of the future is examined through the movement of the human and the robot ball. Taijonlahti performs the piece with a robot ball.
A black swan also visits the piece. The black swan theory is a metaphor used in future research, which comes as a surprise due to its rarity and is often rationalized afterwards. The working group has consulted future reacher Marko Ahvenainen during the work process.
I was responsible for the sound design of the work. The soundscape of the piece consists of footsteps and the sounds of robots and solenoid motors drawing shapes in the acoustical performance space.
Bruce Nauman's video work Walking in an Exaggerated Manner Around the Perimeter of a Square, based on walking, served as a reference for the piece.
The Solenoid System I've developed stands at the heart of many of my sonic explorations. This custom motor controller,
synchronized with MAX/MSP and integrated with Ableton Live, has played a pivotal role in shaping my sound design and individual sound art projects.
Version 3 of the System, coompleted in 2023, commands 178 Solenoid motor channels, enabling a diverse range of movements from subtle nuances to
impactful tapping, driven by PWM pulses.
Beyond sound, the Solenoid System transforms physical space into an auditory canvas. During recent trials, this latest
version, built in collaboration with Lucas Weidinger (Solisynth) and firmware by Andrea Vogrig, spans
the venue in a grid layout, allowing for variedsound movement shapes. Whether creating circular patterns, square formations, or
swaying sequences, rapid motor actions across the space immerse audiences in an interactive sonic journey.
The most notable works featuring the Solenoid System are Mechanit Project's
Tanssiteatteri Hurjaruuth's "Talvisirkus Super",
and my solo work, the interactive installation "Listener".
These creations spotlight the immersive soundscapes crafted by the Solenoid System, researching the synergy between technology and art.
They invite audiences to explore captivating sonic environments brought to life by the latest evolution of the Solenoid System.
Mechanit Project's latest performance Koneistos is a synthetic nature experience,
a performance installation in which the light modules and mechanical sound machines are the main performers. The work seeks beauty
and warmth from the versatile sounds and clumsy movements of physical metallic materials and machines.
The Mechanit Project group includes lighting artist Teo Lanerva, sound artists Atte Olsonen and Jani Hietanen, playwright-choreographer Soili Huhtakallio,
the set builder Ville Metsätalo, experience designer Ukko-Pekka Itäpelto, and producer Anita Parri.
“Mechanit Project's Koneistos is one of the highpoints of the Lux Helsinki  festival” - HBL
In Koneistos, the audience is invited to a “synthetic forest” spread over an area of 100m2. The forest,
built of five-meter aluminum and carbon fiber pipes, is the habitat of dozens of small, mechanical creatures that
communicate through movement, sound, and light. Mechanical light-creatures climb along the tree trunks in dialogue with
sound objects sounding around the forest. As performers, we are present in the space,
but more as equal residents of the forest with the machines and the audience, rather than in a hierarchical position as performers.
Koneen Säätiö, the Finnish Cultural Foundation, The Swedish Cultural Foundation in Finland and Arts
Promotion Centre Finland is funding the project.
Listener is a spatial interactive audiovisual sound installation. The audience is invited one by one into a
darkened room to explore the vivid interactivity of the surrounding rattling sound in the light of a flashlight.
”The visitor enters the fully blacked out space alone. The only light is the flashlight they are handed at the entrance.
There is a continuous uneasy rattling, a cricket-like sound that soon surrounds the visitor completely.
The rattling goes suddenly quiet when the visitor lights the flashlight.
The visitor searches around the space with the flashlight, the rattling gradually fades in.
It feels like the source of the rattling is though continuously evading the light beam however hard you try to find it.
The visitor can slowly see the “root system” of cables that has grown like a vine over the carpet, the tables, the walls.
Some are even hanging from the ceiling. In the end of every vine is a little metallic thing, a motor of some kind.”
Aesthetically the work investigates the agency of machines. The timid character of the motors invites the viewer to meditate
on the presence shared between her/him and the mechanical beings in the shared space.
Technically the installation is built around a modular solenoid motor and light sensor system.
The fully acoustic and spatially articulate soundscape of the work is produced solely by the
mechanical action of the solenoids. The work is adaptable to a wide variety of spaces and is
scalable with its 20-54 solenoid motors and can accommodate spaces between 20-70m2.