Number of the Machine – watch the video

RMIT Gallery debuted celebrated choreographer Antony Hamilton’s first ever work for an art gallery – Number of the Machine.

The performance based work, which ran for three weeks (19 May to 10 June) explored the complex relationship between humans and technology.

The time lapse video reveals how over four continuous hours each day, performers Melanie Lane and Amber McCartney laboriously assembled and disassembled a timber dwelling, moving it from one synthetic island to another.

Number of the Machine was created with the support of Darrin Verhagen, AkE Lab, City of Melbourne and Creative Victoria.

 

Kinetic sculpture explores tension between human and machine

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Number of the Machine, opening night performance, RMIT Gallery, 2017. Photo by Vicki Jones

Number of the Machine (19 May – 10 June) a compelling new performance-based work by celebrated choreographer Antony Hamilton at RMIT Gallery, explores the complex relationships between humans and technology.

In an age where Artificial Intelligence platforms are making inroads into both white collar and blue collar jobs, and climate issues are impacting on the most vulnerable in our communities as well as the environment, Number of the Machine is open to a range of interpretations and offers a powerful image of where we might be headed.

Audiences are invited to watch as over four continuous hours each day, performers Melanie Lane and Amber McCartney laboriously assemble and disassemble a timber dwelling from one synthetic island to the other.

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Number of the Machine, opening night performance, RMIT Gallery, 2017. Photo by Vicki Jones.

Number of the Machine is Antony’s first ever work for gallery spaces. “There is something about the very different spatial and narrative possibilities offered at RMIT Gallery that attracted me to presenting Number of the Machine in this environment,” Hamilton said.

Hamilton was invited by Darrin Verhagen, Director of RMIT’s Audiokinetic Experiments (AkE) Lab, to develop a work following a residency this year.

Verhagen, a senior lecturer in Media and Communication, said that the Audiokientic Experiments (AkE) Lab has facilitated a number of projects over the last three years which have been presented in various exhibitions at RMIT Gallery.

“Many of these projects, such as Object 2 (Experimenta Recharge 2014), Einsturzende Neubauten’s Klangbewegungmaschine (Geniale Diletanten 2015 – pictured below, left), blue|red: VIMS\SIMS (Morbis Artis, 2016 – pictured, below, right) explore the boundaries of what might be classified as fine art – philosophical challenges the gallery has been generous to platform.”

Antony Hamilton’s work takes the question to the next level – not only exploiting the choreography of two 6DOF Motion Simulators, but involving two live dancers in the installation.

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Number of the Machine exploits the choreography of two 6DOF Motion Simulators. Opening night performance, RMIT Gallery, 2017. Photo by Vicki Jones.

RMIT Gallery Director Suzanne Davies said that Hamilton’s kinetic work has a powerful resonance that complements the concurrent RMIT Gallery exhibition Ocean Imaginaries, which focuses on some of the contradictions and conflicted feelings raised by how the ocean is imagined in an age of environmental risk.

“We must not forget that climate issues impact on humanity – indeed, the most vulnerable in our communities, as well as the environment. Catastrophic environmental events will affect us all no matter how secure we think we are,” Davies said.

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(left to right) Antony Hamilton, Suzanne Davies and Darrin Verhagen, at the opening performance of ‘Number of the Machine’, standing in front of ‘Crossing the Rubicon, 2017’ a large scale photograph of an underwater sculpture by Jason Decaires Taylor that features in RMIT Gallery’s ‘Ocean Imaginaries’ exhibition.

Number of the Machine was created with the support of AkE Lab, City of Melbourne and Creative Victoria.

Kinetic sculpture performance by Antony Hamilton
Performers: Melanie Lane and Amber McCartney
Dates: 18 May – 10 June
Times: Mon-Sat 12.30-4.30 pm/ Thurs 2.30-6.30 pm
Venue: RMIT Gallery, Building 16, 344 Swanston Street, Melbourne.
Free – you are welcome to enter and leave at any time during the performance

 

RMIT University AUDIOKINETIC

EXPERIMENTS

(AkE) LAB

Antony Hamilton’s kinetic sculpture opens at RMIT Gallery

RMIT_NumberMachine_Evite_800pxIn an age where Artificial Intelligence platforms are making inroads into both white collar and blue collar jobs, and climate issues are impacting on the most vulnerable in our communities as well as the environment, Number of the Machine, a compelling new performance-based work exploring the complex relationships between humans and technology, opens tonight at 5 pm at RMIT Gallery.

Created by celebrated choreographer Antony Hamilton, Number of the Machine (19 May – 10 June) is open to a range of interpretations and offers a powerful image of where we might be headed.

Number of the Machine is Hamilton’s first ever work for gallery spaces.

Hamilton’s multi-award winning performances involve a sophisticated melding of movement, sound and visual design. He has worked extensively throughout Australia and overseas, predominantly with Chunky Move, Lucy Guerin Inc and Australian Dance Theatre (ADT), winning numerous awards including the prestigious Helpmann Award for Best Male Dancer (2009).

“There is something about the very different spatial and narrative possibilities offered at RMIT Gallery that attracted me to presenting Number of the Machine in this environment,” Hamilton said.

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Artistic Director Antony Hamilton watching a rehearsal of Number of the Machine at RMIT Gallery

In the work, which is performed continuously for four hours each day, two performers engage with a machine that reflects human intellect and biological physicality, but at the same time the task they pursue is seemingly futile and endless, and one that requires total physical activity at the expense of independent thought or creativity.

Combined with an ominous sound design by (((20hz))) that amplifies the rhythmic patterns in the two 6DOF (six degrees of freedom) motion simulators which activate the bodies, the machines exhibit a sentient quality that rivals the human body’s rank in the space.

“The idea is that people can stay as long as they want, watching the performance, and come and go throughout their visit to RMIT Gallery,” Hamilton said.

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Performers Melanie Lane and Amber McCartney in rehearsal for Number of the Machine at RMIT Gallery.

The original dance and motion simulator collaboration evolved through Hamilton’s residency with RMIT’s AkE Lab. The multidisciplinary research, teaching and learning laboratory uses motion simulators, 4D cinema seating, light and VR to explore relationships between sound, movement and vision.

The Audiokientic Experiments (AkE) Lab has facilitated a number of projects which have been presented in various exhibitions at RMIT Gallery. AkE’s associated artistic collective (((20hz))) has been supported by the gallery in presenting Object 2 (Experimenta Recharge 2014), Einsturzende Neubauten’s Klangbewegungmaschine (Geniale Diletanten 2015), blue|red: VIMS\SIMS (Morbis Artis, 2016) as well as Number of the Machine (2017).

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(((20hz)))’s Toby Brodel, from AkE (Audiokinetic Experiments) Lab RMIT, setting up the programming, system design and sound for Number of the Machine at RMIT Gallery.

Number of the Machine explores our entangled relationship with the constructed environment over countless millennia. The work invites audiences to watch as over four continuous hours each day, performers Melanie Lane and Amber McCartney laboriously assemble and disassemble a timber dwelling from one synthetic island to the other.

Hear Hamilton talk about Number of the Machine:

Hamilton’s kinetic work complements the concurrent RMIT Gallery exhibition Ocean Imaginaries which focuses on some of the contradictions and conflicted feelings raised by how the ocean is imagined in an age of environmental risk.

Daily performance times: 19 May – 10 June – Mondays-Saturdays 12.30-4.30pm and Thursdays 2.30-6.30pm.

Artistic Director Antony Hamilton, Programming, System Design and Sound (((20hz)))

Timber structure Justin Green Performers Melanie Lane and Amber McCartney

Sponsors Created with the support of Darrin Verhagen, AkE Lab, City of Melbourne and Creative Victoria.

RMIT Gallery Christmas & summer opening times

RMIT Gallery will be closed from Saturday 24 December to Monday 2 January 2017, reopening on Tuesday 3 January. 

Are you in the city over summer? Come into our air conditioned gallery right in the centre of the cultural district and enjoy our interactive summer exhibition – Morbis Artis: Diseases of the Arts (until 18 February  2017).

Have a play with (((20))) VIM\SIMS which explores visually and sonically induced motion sickness (pictured above). Place your hand in the well of the plinth and watch shadows dance to the sound.The experience is in turns dissociative and enveloping – and potentially nauseating. This is serious academic discourse as popular entertainment; physical discomfort as fine art.

For those who prefer gentler interactive experiences, explore the work of Andrea Rassell. We are silently surveilling one another is a microscopically mediated installation that puts the human organism on the slide and offers up a perspective of that humanity as a crawling seething mass.

In his review on the exhibition for The Article, Sam Leach commented “The works provide scope for a poetic and elliptical understanding of the interactions between humans and non-humans and the ideas of connection and contamination.”

Don’t forget – RMIT Gallery is open until 7 pm every Thursday night, and from 12 noon to 5 pm every Saturday during exhibitions.

Merry Christmas from RMIT Gallery and thank you for your support in 2016. We look forward to seeing you in the New Year with more compelling exhibitions in 2017.

 

 

RMIT Gallery videos explore Geniale Dilletanten exhibition

Celebrating the radical movement and alternative artistic scene that exploded from Germany in the 1980s, RMIT Gallery’s new videos document the current exhibition Geniale Dilletanten [Brilliant Dilletantes] Subculture in Germany in the 1980s + Australian Ingenious Amateurs (13 November 2015 – 27 February 2016).

Watch the video – sound designer Darrin Verhagen talks about the Einstürzende Neubauten’s Klangbewegung Maschine, an audiokinetic jukebox by (((20Hz))), which provides a viscerally embodied, multisensory experience of three classic Einstürzende Neubauten tracks from the 1980’s.

 

Watch the video – Munich based exhibition curator Mathilde Weh and Dr Motte, Berlin
based DJ and founder of The Love Parade, talk about the exhibition and subculture in the 1980s during their visit to RMIT Gallery in November 2015.

 

Watch the video – Australian musician Ash Wednesday, photographer Peter Milne and artist Jenny Watson talk about the Australian subculture scene of the 1980s.

Experience the exhibition for yourself at RMIT Gallery’s exhibition Geniale Dilletanten [Brilliant Dilletantes] Subculture in Germany in the 1980s + Australian Ingenious Amateurs until 27 February 2016.

 

Exploring the legacy of 1980s subculture – Ash Wednesday & Darrin Verhagen

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Einsturzende Neubauten’s Klangbewegung Maschine by (((20Hz))). Photography: Mark Ashkanasy, RMIT Gallery.

Join us at RMIT Gallery on Tuesday 8 December 1-2 pm as sound artist and RMIT senior lecturer Darrin Verhagen and sound designer and musician Ash Wednesday discuss the legacy of 1980s subculture on their music and sound design.

Ash Wednesday is an innovative Australian synth pioneer and a member of self-styled groups, JAB (1976 – 1979) and MODELS (1979 – 1980), where he combined analog synthesizer and experimental tape textures with punk/rock rhythms. He continued working with electronics throughout the 80’s with numerous and diverse, but relatively low profile projects – most notably, perhaps, being ‘Modern Jazz’, an ingenious, impromptu assemblage of electro-based, musicians/non musicians, performing live on stage to a randomly programmed drum machine/sequencer beat.

Darrin will discuss the research behind the intriguing Einsturzende Neubauten’s Klangbewegung Maschine by (((20Hz))). This single participant installation for sound, movement, vibration and light invites participants to experience a viscerally embodied, multisensory internalization of three classic Einsturzende Neubauten tracks. The Klang is current installted in RMIT Gallery as part of the exhibition Geniale Dilletanten: Subculture in Germany in the 1980s.

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Einsturzende Neubauten’s Klangbewegung Maschine by (((20Hz))).  Vicki Jones Photography, RMIT Gallery, 2015.

What: The legacy of 1980s subculture on sound design.

Who: Darrin Verhagen and Ash Wednesday

When: Tuesday 8 December 1-2 pm

Where: RMIT Gallery, 344 Swanston Street Melbourne.

Bookings: Free. (03) 9925 1717

New date for Klangbewegung Maschine talk

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Darrin Verhagen, creator of the Einsturzende Neubauten’s Klangbewegung Maschine by (((20Hz)).

Attention – new date: Tuesday 8 December 1-2 pm. The Klangbewegung Maschine: Darrin Verhagen in conversation with Ash Wednesday at RMIT Gallery.

Due to illness, Darrin Verhagen is unable to participate in the scheduled Thursday 26 December 5.30-6.30 pm talk with Ash Wednesday. The new date  is now Tuesday 8 December 1-2 pm at RMIT Gallery. We apologise for any inconvenience.

In this floor talk  sound artist and RMIT senior lecturer Darrin Verhagen and sound designer and musician Ash Wednesday will discuss the legacy of 1980s subculture on their music and research.

Darrin is the concept designer of the Einsturzende Neubauten’s Klangbewegung Maschine by (((20Hz))), an installation featuring in RMIT Gallery’s + Australian Ingenious Amateurs exhibition that is showing as part of the current Goethe Institut’s international touring exhibition Geniale Dilletanten: Subculture in Germany in the 1980s.

 

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Einsturzende Neubauten’s Klangbewegung Maschine by (((20Hz))), Geniale Dilletanten opening night on November 12 at RMIT Gallery. Image: Vicki Jones Photography, 2015.

The ‘Klang Maschine’ is a single participant installation for sound, movement, vibration and light that invites participants to experience a viscerally embodied, multisensory internalization of three classic Einsturzende Neubauten tracks.

MORE ABOUT THE SPEAKERS

DARRIN VERHAGEN

Darrin is a senior lecturer RMIT in sound and electronic music – currently doing his PhD on the ‘brutality of noise’.  He was the founder and curator of Dorobo records, which showcased Australian sound art for 15 years. Darrin is also a  freelance music writer for Dance, Theatre and Computer Games, and  has released a variety of albums under his own name, as well as a range of pseudonyms. Darrin has performed his more minimal, experimental soundworks at festivals around the globe, and more recently has started performing his dark orchestral material as shinjuku thief in concert.

ASH WEDNESDAY

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Ash Wednesday, with Einsturzende Neubauten, 2004. Photo by Daniela Ceglie.

Ash Wednesday is an innovative Australian synth pioneer and a member of self-styled groups, JAB (1976 – 1979) and MODELS (1979 – 1980), where he combined analog synthesizer and experimental tape textures with punk/rock rhythms. He continued working with electronics throughout the 80’s with numerous and diverse, but relatively low profile projects – most notably, perhaps, being ‘Modern Jazz’, an ingenious, impromptu assemblage of electro-based, musicians/non musicians, performing live on stage to a randomly programmed drum machine/sequencer beat.

Ash says of the 1980s “in Melbourne where I was aware of the concept of the ‘Ingenious Amateur’ as it existed at that time, to the point of implementation into my own work, as well as instigating the idea to others.”

He later gravitated to Berlin in 1992 where he was to acclimatise to the results of such a state of mind and method as it existed then. He was later to become a live performance member of Einstuerzende Neubauten – working with the group consistently between ‘1997 – 2010’.

What: The Klangbewegung Maschine – legacy of 1980s subculture. Discussion.

Who: Darrin Verhagen and Ash Wednesday

When: Tuesday 8 December 1-2 pm (NOTE  – new time and date)

Where: RMIT Gallery, 344 Swanston Street Melbourne.

Bookings: Free. (03) 9925 1717