MATTHIJS MUNNIK

Microscopic Opera

Matthijs Munnik

source: highlike

Work: Can micro-organisms also be performers? How does our relation to these creatures change, after they are seen in an artistic and theatrical context? Looking for a micro-organism that would have the qualities of a performer, I was introduced to C. elegans; a tiny worm, less than a millimetre in length, that moved just as elegant as its name implies and the first creature to have its entire genome sequenced. I was intrigued when a researcher told me that, to tell the worms apart under a microscope, he used different mutations that altered the way they moved. Some move in a spiral, other rolled or twitched and some became morbidly obese because of their mutations. In my installation I have five petri dishes filled with five different mutated worms, which each move slightly different. These five groups of performers are filmed with a usb microscope shown live on the five screens. I wrote special software that tracks the worms, and translates their movements into sounds, making them the unware performers of the music in the macroscopic world above their heads. While researchers are almost like gods to these helpless worms, controlling them from their first to their last cell division, I hoped to give the worms the power to affect us in our world as well. Realized with help of NCSB, NGI and Waag Society.
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source: jotta

Matthijs Munnik creates large-scale installations that incorporate light, sound and on one occasion, worms.

Munnik’s most recent works are entitled Common Structures and Lightscapes. They are both part of a series of installations that investigate optical illusions and hallucinations caused by flickering light. This series, Citadels, was inspired by Brion Gysin and Ian Sommerville’s Dream Machine, a flickering, stroboscopic device that creates visual stimuli. The Dream Machine was viewed with eyes closed, which allows the user to experience patterns of colour as a result of the strobe effect. Citadels continues to explore these effects, but allow the viewer to keep their eyes open, creating “a layer of vivid patterns instantly laid over reality”. Munnik’s Microscopic Opera bridges the boundaries between art and science. Five different, mutated worms move in different ways. Their movement is filmed and shown live on five screens, whilst their movements are translated, in real time, into the sound of an opera.
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source: franceinterfr

Matthijs Munnik a conçu un système générateur de musique pour cinq boites de petri contenant des vers invisiblees à l’oeil nu, et fréquemment utilisés par les scientififques pour leurs expériences. Ainsi à chaque fois que ces C. Elegans, c’est leur nom, font un mouvement dans leur petite boîte, ils déclenchent une séquence musicale. A cinq, ils sont un petit orchestre.
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source: rtvslo

Matthijs Munnik (Worm opera) je v sodelovanju z nizozemskim konzorcijem za biološke sisteme razvil avdiovizualno instalacijo, v kateri majhni mutirani laboratorijski črvi proizvajajo zvoke in podobe. Foto: Pixxelpoint