Bjørn Erik Haugen

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Baudrichord, 2007

Video installation , 300cm x 300cm x 300cm

20,000 USD

Baudrichord is a soundsculpture based on a videoloop of an interview of the french post-modernist theoretician Jean Baudrillard. His speaking is analyzed by a program that interprets his voice into tones, or midi-notes. These notes are then fed into a piano that plays these notes mechanically. With that I mean that you can see the tones played, the keys are playing without anybody but the computer moving them. The piece is a soundsculpture. The videoloop has a duration of three minutes and twentyfour seconds.

Documentation of the work can be seen here: http://bjornerikhaugen.com/Websted/Baudrichord.html

Jean Baudrillard is one of the foremost interpretors of the world and being in the world as a constant regression of simulacra. According to Baudrillard, what has happened in postmodern culture is that our society has become so reliant on models and maps that we have lost all contact with the real world that preceded the map. His opinion is that reality itself has begun merely to imitate the model, which now precedes and determines the real world: "The territory no longer precedes the map, nor does it survive it. It is nevertheless the map that precedes the territory —precession of simulacra—that engenders the territory." The link between the sign and the real is broken, thence the concequence is that everything moves away from its origin and looses its original or real content. Mechanical piano I have in this piece wanted to make use of Baudrillard`s theories of the simulacra on himself as a source. The use is ambivalent since I both am inpired and critical to his theories. The piece is a simulacra, that makes use of Baudrillard speaking, both as a source and a symbol of his theories. His speaking is made into a soundpiece made out of notes. This is a regression since his voice is reduced to notes. The audience looses the content of what is being said in the interview. Instead they hear a piece for piano made out of him talking on the video. Pianos like this is an exclusive and elegant instrument. But the Disklavier that plays midi-notes sell a lot in USA, the buyers are uncultivated rich people that wants a bit of class. The choice of the piano is intended to both be a critique and a hommage to Baudrillard and postmodern thinkers like him as they rst started with theories that revolutionized and transformed our world, and ended up as virtuous theoretical performers. The audience knew excactly what they were getting when they entered their lectures.

Artworks by Bjørn Erik Haugen

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