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eMuse (TM) by Jeff Talman


Sensation: Sense and Sensibility


<< Continued from page 2


The user may mistake both new physical and content driven sensation for depth. The dazzle is confused with a sometimes all-too-shallow message in both new technologies and blockbuster special effects movies. Regardless, people want to be dazzled, and there is no reason why they shouldn't be. There is nothing wrong with seeing what she'll do, twisting the steering wheel west and slamming foot to the floor. Everyone loves a parade. But when the dazzle begins to wear, then hopefully the content has depth beyond the pyrotechnics.

Technologies are developing so quickly that they are stepping on the toes of content development as we jump from sensation to sensation. The new technologies are replacing the old faster than idiomatic content can be invented, much less produced. As new formats are being continually evolved it is hard to know if there will be a stabilization of some sort, such as the decade or so of stability that CDs yielded. The likelihood is that we will see a vortex of continuing change amid a few shorter-term stabilities. With that as the case, it becomes apparent that depth of content is imperative to any sensation that stands as more than the next passing fashion. Otherwise all we will have is passing fashions.

For the new technologies to be meaningful beyond these initial, incredible, enjoyable sensations we must perceive, interpret and have the imagination to recognize their promise early, to demand and aim for more than tech-exploitation, to recognize in the promise of the new that which Rilke recognizes in The Book of Hours:

I'm living just as the century ends.
A great leaf, that God and you and I
have covered with writing
turns now, overhead, in strange hands.
We feel the sweep of it like a wind.
We see the brightness of a new page
where everything yet can happen.


Copyright © 29 January 2000 by Jeff Talman, Saratoga Springs, NY, USA



eMuse is published by Music & Vision on alternate Saturdays.

Next, on 12 February, Joshua Fried: Subverting Technology




Jeff Talman is a composer, soundspace installation artist, performer and digital audio technology specialist. His recent site-specific installation, Vanishing Point 1.1, was heralded by The New York Times as 'A Building With a Song In Its Heart and Vaults.' He has had numerous artist's residencies at the MacDowell Colony, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and others. From December 1999 until March 2000 he will be creating a new installation at Yaddo, an artist's residence in Saratoga Springs, NY, USA.

He has held teaching and conducting positions at Columbia University, the City College of New York, Heidelberg College and others. He has also consulted and produced for numerous firms including AT&T, SONY Music Special Products Group, Simon & Schuster and Dalet Digital Media Systems. Currently he maintains a digital studio in New York City.



Jeff Talman:


Vanishing Point 1.1:




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