“Lumière”, an audiovisual composition for lasers and sound, is a long term artistic research project by frequent CTM collaborator Robert Henke. The work explores syntax, meaning and narration within a newly developed audiovisual language. An exploration of the synchronicity and divergence of light and darkness, slow movements and sudden bursts of motion and noise, “Lumière” elevates Henke’s expertise as he commands six powerful lasers to draw repeating shapes, ephemeral objects, and ultra short pulses of light in an improvised dialogue where shapes create sonic events and vice versa.
The stunning sound and laser show is based on hundreds of audiovisual “notes”, creating a highly synchronized immersive experience. The lasers, projected onto a large screen, are partially obscured by a wall of fog, which also makes their intensive beams visible in the air, forming fragile temporary objects above the audience. The special quality of the laser light allows complete darkness to be combined with moments of extreme brightness, pure white with intense saturated colors and precise movements with complex organic shapes.
Premiered in 2014, the work has continued to evolve and is now ready to be presented as “Lumière II”. This latest version is driven by several pieces of software, written by Henke himself, which allow the creation of rapid successions of vector graphic images, as well as the associated sonic events, driven by a text-based scripting language. "Lumière II", the current version of “Lumière”, is a complete re-work of the initial ideas, with a different focus and aesthetics. While the first version was based on improvisation with resulting rough and spontaneous gestures, the second iteration is the opposite: a carefully crafted composition which is constantly refined and extended.
Alongside the peerless, timeless Monolake releases on Chain Reaction, Robert Henke is well-known for the music he has been creating under his own name since the early 90s: ambient, experimental soundscapes featuring material developed from or intended for an installation or performance in a particular space. Henke co-developed the omnipresent Ableton Live music software with Gerhard Behles, and his interest in performance of computer-based music had a significant influence in the development of the software. He launched his own imprint, Imbalance Computer Music, in 1997. Since 2009, he has taught sound design at the Berlin University of the Arts, and regularly gives lectures worldwide about music production, interface design, Ableton Live and composition of computer music in selected universities and conferences.
Supporting Henke will be Yair Elazar Glotman with KETEV, his post techno project made by phasing patterns from Reel-to-reel tape loops that are manipulated by 4-track cassette decks. The artist’s self-titled debut release on Opal tapes in 2014 was described as “picking up where the darkest records by Andy Stott and Sam Kerridge left off” (Boomkat), and was quickly followed-up by a second release, Singular Stare, on the UK label where to now?. Instantly noticeable in Ketev’s music is his willingness to dig into slower tempos and murkier territory than many of his post-techno contemporaries, a deliberate heaviness that through lengthy, patiently built tracks becomes totally immersive.
Mieko Suzuki provides music in the foyer before and after the concert.
KETEV is supported by the SHAPE platform for emerging European artists, an initiative that is supported by the Creative Europe programme of the European Union.