Miguel Carvalhais

ENGLISH

08 ABR · 18H30 · Miguel Carvalhais
Audição Computacional 

Moderador · José Alberto Gomes


A computação é omnipresente e invasiva, infiltrando-se, e radicalmente transformando, todos os aspetos da vida. A computação está crescentemente presente nos ambientes físicos e públicos, com códigos-espaços emergindo da sua metainterface. A computação obriga-nos a mudar as nossas formas de ver o mundo que partilhamos com ela, adoptando um olhar computacional que nos é ainda estranho mas que se torna fundamental para a experiência de meios e arte computacionais. Baseada em novas e únicas formas de comprometimento estético, a relação com o computacional começa com a estética como portal para a perceção do substracto computacional e a sua estranheza. Esta relação é profundamente ontológica, e é desenvolvida através de interfaces que emergem das relações entre sistemas computacionais; destes com os humanos; e dos humanos assombrados pela computação. Nesta conversa será explorada a forma como a perceção humana é reconfigurada pelo computacional, tornando-se multi- e transmodal, fazendo do som e da audição algorítmica recurssos epistemológicos fundamentais para públicos e criadores por igual.

 


INTRODUCTION by José Alberto Gomes
 
As a conscious activity, listening is receiving information through hearing. It involves identifying sounds and processing them into content. When we listen, we receive sounds and we use our brain to convert these into messages that mean something. The act of listening involves complex affective, cognitive, and behavioral processes. It is a skill that involves different levels of effort. It takes a level of concentration and focus. Listening has a key role in our lives, either in the context of survival or in the cognitive development. For example it is the first of the four language skills, before speaking, reading and writing. It is the primal form to connect and perceive the surrounding. Listening jumps between different levels of consciousness. To implement a listening ability to computers, since audio signals are interpreted by the human ear-brain system, that complex perceptual mechanism should be simulated somehow in software for machine listening. This notion of teaching a machine to listen was first widespread in the artistic application of computer music.
 
We live in a post-digital world in which an invasive computation is fundamental to how communication functions and becomes essential to artistic practice and the aesthetic experience. 
Today our very present digital prostheses are increasingly able to analyse and respond to sonic information as well. Machine listening is much more than just a new scientific discipline or vein of technical innovation. It is also an emergent field of knowledge-power, of data extraction and colonialism, of capital accumulation, automation and control. It demands critical and artistic attention. Initially inspired by models of human audition, Machine Listening deals with questions of representation, transduction, grouping, use of knowledge and general sound semantics for the purpose of performing intelligent operations on audio and musical signals.
 
 
Artists contribute to the ongoing process of thinking and questioning ourselves and the world through the engagement of artworks as tools, and art directly enroles with those technological practices, primarily as a way to understand how they affect us, and finally, as a means to reorganise ourselves. Computation is capable of endlessly generating new environments, not because the technologies are new in themselves, but because it allows the permanent re-articulation of environments and the constant development of new and sometimes unprecedented relations with their inhabitants. In a wider vision, computation is no longer only a means to create an artwork but can be the artwork itself. 
 
But we are in a new step of this ongoing process. The focus is no longer about machines emulating our auditory process. Nowadays, the ways of listening are going through a new reconfiguration pushed by the ubiquitous presence of computers, computer networks, and computational media in our lives. Emerged in computational technologies, our listening needs to adapt to online and offline environments marked by an “all-out internet condition” that turns culture into a code/space. 
 
This talk will explore how human perception is reconfigured by the computational, becoming multi and crossmodal, making sound and algorithmic listening fundamental epistemological resources for both audiences and creators alike.
 

BIO

Miguel Carvalhais é um designer, artista e músico. Professor Auxiliar no Departamento de Design na Faculdade de Belas Artes da Universidade do Porto e investigador no INESC TEC e no i2ADS. Ele estuda o práticas criativas com sistemas computacionais e ecreveu o livro “Artificial Aesthetics” sobre este tópico. A sua investigação e prática exploram como sistemas computacionais e processuais são lidos por humanos e como a descoberta e interpretação processual são soberanas na criação de significado e de experiências estéticas. A sua prática artística engloba computer music, arte sonora, live performance, audiovisuais e instalações sonoras. Ele dirige a editora de música experimental e arte sonora Crónica, a conferência xCoAx (on computation, communication, aesthetics and x), e o simpósio Invisible Places (sobre arte de paisagens sonoras e ecologia).

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