FULCRUM 2022 is a multichannel, ambisonic audio-video live performance that addresses the ecological loss caused by the climate crisis and the potential for environmental and societal disturbances, including wars, as a result. The recent Covid-19 emergency can also be seen as a consequence of non-sustainable growth. Additionally, current Russian aggression and atrocities towards Ukrainian civilians serve as a reminder of the delicate balance our existence relies on. The burning of hydrocarbons not only harms the planet, but also undermines democracy, fueling the worst war in Europe since 1945. Corrupt politicians continue to use public funds to support the Russian war machine through their purchases of gas and oil.
To understand and come to terms with this situation, it is necessary to grieve and find new spiritual strategies. The concept of "Dark Ecology" by Timothy Morton is particularly useful in this regard: "This is the state of affairs of the Anthropocene, where ecological awareness (...) implicates us all in some sort of environmental film noir: just as the detective is also the criminal, the philosopher is part of the massively distributed thing that is the human species and contributes to mass extinction".
FULCRUM implements a fully multichannel, polyphonic ambisonic synthesis and spatial sound propagation method, using state-of-the-art virtual modular environment combining various techniques to create a unique sonic and composing experience. It can be tailored to different existing speaker arrays, bringing spatially rich electronic compositions to the widest possible audience and venues at the lowest possible cost. It can drive 4 or 64 speakers, and anything in between, also unusual floor plans, scaling seamlessly according to given possibilities.
The compositions are prepared with surround information embedded directly into every instrument's characteristics. Each note is routed and spatialized independently via complex audio synthesis and propagation chain, allowing single sound's building parts to be scattered around in virtual space. This approach differs widely from the more common approach of adapting stereo tracks to multichannel setups, leading to a much more detailed and sophisticated modern electronic sound experience.
FULCRUM's avant-garde and electro-acoustic heritage, combined with its emphasis on spatial awareness, brings to mind the figure of Iannis Xenakis, an important pioneering 20th century Greek composer. All compositions extensively employ a number of procedural, parametric, or algorithmic tools and strategies, both in sculpting sound timbres and notes character or occurrence. Additionally, the spatial characteristics of instruments are programmed to allow for lively and sometimes unexpected resolutions. All of these elements come together to create a living, breathing musical organism, a development and performance tools that are custom-tailored using the newest synthesis and spatial sound technologies.
The accompanying contemplative videos of nature were captured over the last 3 years in many European places cherished by the artist for their simple beauty and fragility.
FULCRUM was developed during artist residency at A4 in Bratislava, supported by Visegrad Fund