Tectonic Resonance is a 3D-printed sculpture and sound work which explores parallels between ancient geological formations and new modes of fabrication. This complex and innovative form has been created with emerging technologies, including 3D printed sandstone processes and artificial intelligence (AI). Tectonic Resonance explores human manufacturing, naturally occurring phenomena and the potential intersections between technological and earth formations.
This evocative work has been intentionally placed in a highly-designed and urbanised site. Formed concrete and hard edges of brutalist architecture surround and offer a strong physical contrast to its intricate and flowing articulation. Comparatively this concrete space is also made from sand and aggregate, the same earthly matter used in this 3D-printing process. Cast bronze elements are integrated into the work and reference forms created when liquids such as magma or water fill voids within landscapes.
This work is a collaboration by innovative Melbourne-based, multi-disciplinary architecture duo Snooks+Harper and Philip Samartzis, a sound artist, curator and academic. The collaboration offers an opportunity to consider how the natural environment around us is formed through long-term geological processes: tectonic shifts, erosion, deposition of sediment, and glaciation. In Tectonic Resonance, technology evokes geological landscapes, and highlights the potentials of new human processes of fabrication such as additive manufacturing (3D printing) to produce these forms. An AI model has been developed to help synthesise the work by integrating photography of geological features and images of previous design works.
Philip’s rumbling sound composition is designed to be localised and affective. As you move around the work the multichannel experience is revealed and what you hear and feel may change. Reverberating from the sculpture the composition is inspired by ground vibrations and phenomena generated by topography, weather, and wildlife. Philip has integrated site-based recordings from remote locations and the oldest geological phenomena in Australia. Sound is another somatic expression of geology and evocative of our relationship with the natural world, including the Earth’s magnetic field, provoking questions of our relationship with cosmic and geological forces.
Situated in the centre of Brisbane city, Tectonic Resonance is both familiar and otherworldly. It reminds us of the deep layers of Earth’s time and the fleeting duration of human existence and technological advancements, and our exploitation of the Earth’s resources.
Tectonic Resonance was developed with support from RMIT School of Art and School of Architecture and Urban Design
Tectonic Resonance is free to view. If you’d like to learn more about Snooks + Harper’s inspirations informing their work, please purchase tickets for Conversations on Art & Science – Tectonic Resonance. To hear Philip Samartzis’ present his geophonic recordings and discuss his work in the field, please purchase tickets for Conversations on Art & Science – Subterranean Sonics.
About the Creators
SNOOKS+HARPER is a Melbourne-based art, design and architecture practice that embraces emerging technologies in the creation of innovative spaces and objects in the public realm. Their 3D-printed prototypes and installations have been exhibited and collected internationally, including by the National Gallery of Victoria, and the Pompidou Centre in France. They are specialists in robotic fabrication and additive manufacturing.
PHILIP SAMARTZIS is a Melbourne-based sound artist, scholar, and curator with a specific interest in the social and environmental conditions informing remote wilderness regions and their communities. Philip’s project Polar Force with Speak Percussion was awarded an honorary mention at the 2019 Prix Ars Electronica. He leads the Sound Art and Auditory Culture Lab at RMIT University.
View Snooks + Harper website.
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