A networked multiuser virtual environment for sonic experimentation and telematic performance. New Atlantis emerged from a multi-year series of workshops and exchanges between French and American art schools under the name “TransAtLab” (a trans-atlantic laboratory). The project refers to the “sound houses” in Francis Bacon’s short novel New Atlantis, a space in their utopian society for marvelous devices and rooms for storing and manipulating sound. It is an open-world project, in which any user can create and share virtual spaces. It draws inspiration from virtual environments like Second Life, but while most similar virtual environments focus primarily on visual representation, New Atlantis also focuses on audio capabilities such as virtual acoustics. We see it as a multipurpose platform: for educational use, for networked performance, and ultimately as a public virtual space. It is presented in both an interactive installation format, and in a performance format with participants connecting remotely to perform for a live audience.
Networked performance for the Ear Taxi Festival in Chicago, showing the “Chicago space”, with pieces created at SAIC. This video shows the RPI node during the performance, using the CRAIVE Lab 360 degree screen and multichannel audio.
A Grove in Winter with Birds
A meditative space I created in New Atlantis, a small grove of trees in a valley in winter, home to a flock of birds and their nests. The sound of each bird is made from heavily processed acoustic guitar samples, including the scraping sound of the strings, percussive sound of the guitar body, and manipulating overtones. This video shows the RPI node during a performance at Le Cube in Paris, using the CAVE screen at the Emergent Reality Lab at RPI.
Networked performance for the Ear Taxi Festival in Chicago, showing the “Troy space”, including pieces created by students in a workshop with Rob Hamilton’s “Designing Musical Games” class.
This video shows the RPI node during the performance, using the CRAIVE Lab 360 degree screen and multichannel audio.
Peter Sinclair, Locus Sonus, École supérieure d’art d’Aix-en-Provence
Roland Cahen, ENSCI-Les Ateliers, the École nationale supérieure de création industrielle, Paris
Peter Gena, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Ben Chang, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Rob Hamilton, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Jonathan Tanant, lead developer
Daan de Lange (ESA-Aix)
Théo Paolo (ESA-Aix)
Alexandre Amiel (ESA-Aix)
Gonzague Defos de Rau