Article “Artistic Research Practice in Experimental Sound Art” in Zeitschrift der Gesellschaft für Musiktheorie 19/2
Bovermann, Till / Thomas Grill / Almut Schilling (2022), »Rotting Sounds. Artistic Research Practice in Experimental Sound Art«, Zeitschrift der Gesellschaft für Musiktheorie 19/2.The majority of today’s media is produced in the digital domain. Although digital data are adorned by a myth of perfection, everyday experience does provide evidence for the existence of degradation and, ultimately, data loss in various forms. The multi-year artistic research project Rotting Sounds has investigated the causes, mechanisms, and effects of such deterioration, specifically in the context of digital audio. This report gives a condensed account of some of the theoretical foundations and methodical approaches chosen. The digital-analog interface, information encoding, as well as the deep time perspective are specifically highlighted. We present a number of artistic works that have been developed as experimental systems to co-generate questions and finally lead to various conclusions. These concern the controllability of such experiments and the interrelationships between (sound) information and its environment. The term of digital patina was introduced to characterize observed aesthetics in permanent transformation and to open up a new perspective on the existence of the digital in a material context.