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Chromesthetic Variations

Online streaming of recent work
by Umut Eldem

‘Chromesthetic Variations’ is a set of audiovisual generative set of variations, created from a single synaesthetic theme. The work is focused around the PhD research of the composer Umut Eldem, which explores synaesthesia (the experience of colors and visual forms upon hearing music) as a contemporary artistic medium. For some synaesthetic people, notes, chords, and music suggest specific visual elements. This suggestion happens on the subconscious level, and the person experiences multiple senses 'together'. It is this impression that the Variations explore: the intersection of visual and sonic ideas developing together. The notes, textures, and visual feel of the main theme are explored through different styles in each variation; in some variations the visuals direct the progression of the sound, and in some the sounds dictate visual shapes on the canvas.

The style of Generative Art is the driving force behind each variation. A few simple simple rules such as "The note A becomes the color Green", or "The movement of the visual cells becomes the rhythm of the music" are programmed into creating more elaborate miniatures. The main idea behind the creation of the work is to access and simulate the 'inner eye'- the level of perception where deep listening of music automatically suggests feelings, sensations, and visions. This is of course not synaesthesia, yet it functions on a similar principle. The audience is encouraged to focus on how they feel towards their experience, if the combination of the sounds and images fit well together or not.