Bend To My Will


Kinetic Sound Sculpture

Medium: Etched Copper Plate, Linear Actuators, Steel
    Foot, Arduino, Contact Microphone, Transducers.

Nor again is there anyone who loves or pursues or desires to obtain pain of itself, because it is pain, but because occasionally circumstances occur in which toil and pain can procure him some great pleasure.” - Cicero

Bend To My Will portrays the shortsightedness and opportunism that constitute much of the current communicative discourse. Ideologies are increasingly being replaced by volatile pseudo standpoints, arguments are being substituted by catch phrases, juxtaposed monologues are staged as proxies for dialogue. An increasing fear of ambiguity caters for reactive bursts of resonances within a growing number of echo chambers across the political spectrum, as people look for belonging and cohesion.

In Bend To My Will, Ehlin controls and manipulates an ongoing electro-acoustic feedback loop by continuously changing the bent shape of a 2 meter tall copper plate. As the shape changes, so does the plate’s inherent resonant frequency, thereby breaking each resonance build-up so that it has to start over again from its new fundamental frequency. In a perpetuum mobile fashion the plate reflexively changes shape every time the feedback gets too loud, literally making it shy away every time the resonance crosses a certain threshold.

The engraving Lorem Ipsum… is a scrambled version of texts by Cicero on the topic of hedonism, opportunism and shortsightedness. Mostly without any reference to its original meaning the text has been the default exemplary text used in printing, along with copper, the original material of early printing technology. Through the continuous changing of resonant frequencies, the audience is invited to experience the shift between moments of ambiguity and peaks of howling clarity. Can we in days of echo chambers and filter bubbles afford to trust resounding resonance or do we need to learn to find acceptance and fulfilment within the ambiguous and opaque?