Students learn how to build an electronic instrument and how to explore and present it acoustically. They learn how to handle tools and equipment in various inputs with group exercises. In self-study, artistic positions are investigated by means of research, then discussed and debated in the group. Autodidactic learning as well as peer learning is specifically encouraged (e.g. with skill shares) in order to acquire specific skills and to stimulate exchange among each other (network thinking).
Hacking, appropriation (DIY), and trial and error are taught as methods to advance students' own work in the design process. Students are able to use these strategies for themselves and combine theory inputs with practical elements. They also develop skills in presentation and performance.
The SoundLab module consists of different parts:
1. An electronic instrument/setup is built, physically or digitally or a combination thereof, and continuously developed during the module.
2. In parallel, the instrument/setup is explored acoustically and sounds are captured and developed. Participants will inspire each other, in creation as well as performance.
Students decide where they want to focus: sound design, prototyping, or performance. For the module conclusion different formats are possible, e.g. performance (live set), A/V installation, audio track as soundtrack (album, EP, single) and also "choose your appropriate medium".
In smaller blocks, introduction to electronics, soldering, audio recording and DAW will be taught. Where desired and necessary, going deeper into CAD drawing, laser cutter and 3D printing can take place. The introductions are combined with practical exercises, which are also deepened either through self-study or in the group. Parts of the exercises can be used for the own realization and inspire the project.
In addition to the practical introductions, various artistic positions are worked through by the students in short presentations and presented to the others. This forms the basis for the joint analysis and discussion of various works. Further guided group work takes place in which the students are sensitized in their perception and with regard to the final presentations (exhibition, performance, etc.).
In self-study, the brainstorming takes place which is formulated in writing and presented orally. The project plan should serve as a guide or compass to help the students with the implementation. At regular intervals, short presentations (jam sessions) take place among each other, in which ideas can be exchanged and new directions can be taken. In individual discussions, students receive tips and suggestions for the realization as well as the final presentation. The students decide for themselves how they want to present their instrument.
Chris Obrist, Ivana Lakic