words and art by w a l t e r w s m i t h

Posts tagged “Ambient Music

into abstraction | form and place | holding our absence | a returning ecstasy

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“Into Abstraction | Form and Place” continues my exploration of various forms that manifest elements of the surreal, abstract and memory attachments. The piece structure is centered around a time-lapsed progression. It moves from a visual kinetic movement to a slower more meditative movement. The electronic sound scape mirrors this movement with several layers of organic and industrial sounds centered around a continuous ambient drone. Within this complex musical structure, different distinct modalities emerge. And after several minutes of frenetic movement, the sound structure slowly washes away (with ocean waves) into a quieter more delineated infused drone. In each new video in the series “Into Abstraction”, I am attempting to find new ways of manipulating the film software. This process is very satisfying because the possibilities seem endless.

I have been working on this piece for several weeks. And over that time, I found myself contemplating many aspects of my life, as I often do, and searching for visual parallels that may compliment the emotional context of the moment. As in most of my work, I find that I repeat and remix many of my images, sounds, thoughts, and voices. Sometimes I wonder if the emotional connections of the past and the present ever change at all, or just evolve into the future: Evolve into the continuum which is the work. Evolve Into Abstraction, where form and void, form and memories, form and mutation, form and impermanence, form and dreams and form and place become one. Art has a way of giving us a moment of clarity, but does not necessarily save. Our work at times can reveal the life that lives in shadows. But may never quite give us the answers we seek to sustain us. So we are driven to go at it as if there were no history before now.

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your world beginning | transcending the mundane – day 1 – video art HD


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On the edge of everything beginning … the further away we are, the closer the moment. Waking, dreaming and making pasta.


traveling without moving | your world beginning – video art HD


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“Traveling Without Moving,” is the bridge between the past and the future i.e. “Your World Disappearing” and “Your World Beginning.” A video self-portrait that is a visual journey of memories, delineated thoughts, dreams and aspirations. There is a slight contradiction at work here. The body is in motion in time, and the mind is still; the painful past and uncertain future struggle against the stillness of being present in this time and space i.e. traveling in the present moment.


we can never go out and play | your world disappearing | HD video art

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Recently I had the opportunity to view a documentary by German filmmaker Werner Herzog entitled “From One Second To The Next.” The subject was texting and driving, and the effect it had on several individuals, including victims, family members, perpetrators, and law enforcement. While watching the film I could feel the emotional pain of all involved.

Texting and driving is a senseless act, and within a moment of lapse concentration can produce tragic results: Loved ones lost, lives ruined.

My video entitled “We Can Never Go Out And Play” was influenced by one family and one child named Xavier featured in the film. X-Man was his nickname. He was struck by a distracted driver texting while he crossed the street with his older sister. She says, “One moment he was holding my hand and the next moment he was gone”. His mother, riddled with pain and sorrow explained his massive injuries. Including paralysis and respiratory injuries requiring constant connection to ventilators to breathe.

What caught my attention, and what was the impetus for my film, was her stating that the most painful thing for her was not being able to say … “go out and play”. She sat there, her eyes focused on the lens of the camera, and repeated that this simple gesture of love, in saying, “go out and play,” would be lost forever.

My film work usually comes from a place of the abstract. My series entitled “Your World Disappearing” explores ambiguity, magic and lost, isolation, and endings. In the series I am imploring, in the abstract, environmental landscapes and organic forms to convey these existential concepts and personal entropy.

Because I see things in the abstract when revealing my emotional state there may appear to be a disconnect between what the viewer is seeing and my personal objective. A perfect example is this series, and this video piece in particular. All my work is created concurrently with how I am feeling emotionally. Presently, I am feeling a sense of separation from a loved one, and from my own aspirations and intentions. And most notably my place in this world. Like the wind blowing fiercely in an atomic storm and tree branches succumbing to the will of the unknown, I find my sense of self searching for its own survival.


form and void | your world disappearing | video art

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Please select the 1080 HD in the setting tool, to view in High Definition.

My fifth video “Form and Void”, in my short film series entitled “Your World Disappearing” continues the exploration of ambiguity, magic and lost, and on the edge of everything ending. Again, I am using film that I shot from various locales such as the shore, mountains, and forest combined with some sampled imagery to bring this series into an elemental sense of organic ambiance. I composed the music from samples and each piece is constructed to give the feeling of alienation, detachment and a bittersweet wonderment.


give your tears to time | your world disappearing – video art

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He wrote
in fervent oscillation;
through the center that does not hold …

fingers bloodied and broken
the painful past
and uncertain future,
forged together
in this present moment,

penned with tears given to time
and his world disappearing …

My second video in my short film series under the title “Your World Disappearing”. Exploring ambiguity, and emotional constructs through the lens of ambient minimalism fused with organic and natural elements. “Through art I feel like subtracting”.


your world disappearing | high definition video art

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A short film of ambient minimalism. Exploring the theme of “through art I feel like subtracting” i.e. Memories fading, dreams ending and your world disappearing.
For High Definition viewing, please select 1080 HD in the setting tool icon.


music for backgrounds | sound artist chihei hatakeyama

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Chihei Hatakeyama is one of my favorite ambient sound designers. He weaves beautiful tonal soundscapes for enriching the creative process and for meditative reflection.


January 21. 2012. 05:59 PM (A Heavenly Slideshow Remix)

2011 and now 2012 promises to bring to the forefront—images and ideas for the contemplative and visionary mind.

Here is just a sample of recent work.

http://youtu.be/uJHrGjLq3Dw

Music by Tomasz Bednarczyk


Music For Backgrounds 03: Brian Eno – Discreet Music

Discreet Music is an exquisite moment in classic ambient music….

I love the work of Brian Eno. Followers of ambient electronic music are quite familiar with his work. Throughout the years he has been well received and recognized as the founding father of the ambient music genre. This song entitled Discreet Music embodies the term classical ambience; circa 1975. His work, and especially this piece has always been an influential support mechanism for a lot of my creative pursuits and processes (most notably—repetition and pattern in my visual design). Some of my favorite moments with this piece has been the repeated playing of the song while entertaining guests for dinner. I believe it is perfect for any setting while enjoying a wonderful epicurean delight.

Once again in keeping with the structure of “Music For Backgrounds” I am imploring a song of some length. Discreet Music clocks in at just over 30 minutes long.

Peace in ambience….

http://youtu.be/SrBoE0ItRLc

Below is a small excerpt of his career.

Brian Eno

Brian Peter George St. John le Baptiste de la Salle Eno (born 15 May 1948), commonly known as Brian Eno or simply as Eno is an English musician, composer, record producer, singer and visual artist, known as one of the principal innovators of ambient music.

Eno studied at Colchester Institute art school in Essex, England, taking inspiration from minimalist painting. During his time on the art course at the Institute, he also gained experience in playing and making music through teaching sessions held in the adjacent music school.

He joined the band Roxy Music as their keyboards and synthesizers player in the early 1970s. Roxy Music’s success in the glam rock scene came quickly, but Eno soon tired of conflicts with lead singer Bryan Ferry, and of touring, and he left the group after the release of For Your Pleasure (1973), beginning his solo career with the art rock records Here Come the Warm Jets (1973) and Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy) (1974).

Eno extended his reach into more experimental musical styles with (No Pussyfooting) (1973) and Evening Star (1975), both collaborations with Robert Fripp, The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway (1974) by Genesis where his work is credited as “Enossification”, and his influential solo records Another Green World (1975) and Discreet Music (1975). His pioneering ambient efforts at “sonic landscapes” began to consume more of his time beginning with Ambient 1: Music for Airports (1978) and later Apollo: Atmospheres and Soundtracks (1983) which was composed for the documentary film For All Mankind. Eno nevertheless continued to sing on some of his records, ranging from Before and After Science (1977) to Wrong Way Up (1990) with John Cale to most recently Another Day on Earth (2005) and Drums Between the Bells (2011).