My creative practice revolves around the basic building blocks of digital media: the character, the sample and the pixel. I regard these works not for what they are but for how they came to be. For me, the process is the product. Recent samples of my work can be found on my personal Instagram account. Mostly, these works are a way of documenting my creative process.
Submitted to an open call on “screen-based new media art with a focus on light” by the New Media Caucus, Opus Luz attempts to give viewers the ability to freeze the complexities of sound in light and space on their own terms and to take this snapshot of sound with them. The product presented here is just one of the infinite numbers of variations that would emerge from a single catalyst, a series of light patterns transmediated from an atonal composition that can only be captured through bulb photography. The light patterns emerging from the sound are the work, a work almost ephemeral unless captured by the ultimate light catcher: a camera.
The haptic/textile-like qualities of this particular version of Opus Luz are an artifact of the movements of the camera. The image above holds a particular aesthetic but says little about the process.
It starts with a song. An atonal piece “designed” to accommodate a mathematical scale (as opposed to a normative, musical one) by customizing the frequencies to produce consistent patterns when transmediated to visual outputs. In other words, this “music” is composed to be seen and it cannot be played through traditional musical instruments. Although the piece is binaural, each channel has its own character and purpose. The left channel plays higher tones, while the right channel plays lower. This difference plays an important role in the later parts of the process. You can listen to it here (headphones or earbuds are recommended).
Visualizing sound. The song is now visualized as a map of sound waves’ density (or pressure). The difference between both channels’ signals is represented through the colour of the patterns: magenta for the right channel and cyan for the left channel.
Light painting. The sound visualization in combination with a slow shutter app is then used to create a visualization of the sound that also accounts for time: The longest the piece, the more complex the final image could be, but that is part of the viewer’s agency.
This work was originally intended to be displayed as a vertical light pole with a speaker playing the song and an Instagram filter that viewers could use to capture both the light trails and the music from the piece.
Other selected works
Sequential image fragments displayed in a mobile device as animated GIFs, captured and rebuilt through a long exposition photography app (Slow Shutter).
An homage to early animation and a personal reflection on the COVID lockdowns. The dancers is based on “A couple waltzing”, a zoopraxiscope by Eadweard Muybridge.
Animated Graphic Interface Format (GIF)
The GIF is the work. The source material. The Dancers are consistent and stable but their dance is too slow for our eyes. You can capture their dance but then it becomes erratic and capricious.
That’s the trade-off.
A variation on light drawing, Textilite (light weaving) is about creating holograms of Huastec embroideries in public locations in Vancouver. Textilite is a text about migration and ephemerality. All of the patterns for the embroideries are based on the work of Tenek artists, collected and published by Mexican educator Leona Santos Concepción in the book Iconografía Tének. This project was developed in collaboration with Diana Ortiz.
Animated Graphic Interface Format (GIF)
The patterns rest within these shapes, they are visible but not observable.
The result of years of experimentation with glitch art practices (especially data-bending), Print Music is a series of exercises in transmediation between audio and visual raw digital signal. Print Music is an attempt to respond to John Whitney’s challenge to create art for the eye and the ear by ‘taming the glitch’ and overlooking some of the typical Western musical canons.
This is what these data sound like. Each of these pieces was produced using standard scales defined not by Western musical canon but mathematical relationships between each note’s frequency and the length of the entire piece.
This is what these data look like. Each of these pieces was produced by visualizing the same raw data used to produce the audio pieces displayed above. My only intervention is the use of colour to emphasize particular passages and artifacts encountered during the audio production.
This is what these data look and sound like. The visual and aural versions of the same data run concurrently through the screen window. The visuals seem to react to the sounds and the sounds to the visuals.
An ongoing study of the optical affordances of pixels. An attempt to re-visibilize the minimum unit of digital imagery, not just as a component but as a protagonist.
Transparency is in the eye of the beholder. A project heavily informed by remix culture. Using a simple grid technique, multiple images can be both layered together and isolated.
Images sourced from
Livre d’Or de la Santé (1903)
First came the film, then came the GIF. A “classic” remix project, the purpose of Broken GIFs is to take animated GIFs specifically created from films and freeze them by exploding their frames to maintain their kineticism.