A new creative project of connection between two worlds that of humans and technology where an industrial robot can act through music.
The Valse Automatique project was designed by great creative minds from different worlds such as designer Hermann August Weizenegger, born in 1963, studied Industrial Design at the Berlin University of the Arts. After graduation, he enjoyed 16 years of international success with his own design agency, Vogt + Weizenegger. In 2009 he founded his studio “HAW”. Since 2004 he has been Professor of Industrial Design at the Potsdam University of Applied Sciences.
Mihalj Kekenj, his real name, was born in Braunschweig in 1979, he fell in love with the violin from a very young age since his family has played this instrument for generations. He began to write his own lyrics and produce rhythms at the age of 15. In 2002, he started his first project of his own: “Opus 1”. Then for the temporary gallery MADE in Berlin he put aside his hip-hop experience and composed several works of chamber music in the classical sense. like the “Valse Automatique”.
Hermann Weizenegger with the collaboration of a group of specialists (sound design: Chris Jeff; interface: Stephan Thiel; Artis Furniture and Interior Design Concepts: Wolf Deiss, Roman Kühnert; organization: Jacob Blazejczak) were in charge of designing the general interface between the composer’s music and the robot’s production process.
For Weizenegger it was one of the most difficult and challenging productions he has ever participated in.
How was the process?
It started with the concept of general performance includes five variants of MIKI music represented in five objects. The material chosen was wax as the base because it can be handled quickly by milling and heating, and then used for casting. Therefore, the performance is defined as a two-stage production process that shows MIKI and a pianist the robot that polishes the objects. In a process prior to the performance, the shape of the wax base was polished to reflect the musical atmosphere. In the second process, the robot used the Bunsen burner to complete the processing of the object according to the reaction of the machine to the MIKI game.
A KUKA robot, he gave up pre-set precise movements and transforms himself into a sculpture artist. Played music is simultaneously transformed and represented by a computer program as digital data and converted into virtual three-dimensional geometry. This data drives the movement of robots for production, or in sculptures of space objects or cultural relics, capturing the characteristics of music, which is part of human emotions and the standards of the digital process.
In addition the project incorporated a Chris lighting system. With a large-scale sample with an open source renderer written in Java.
As a result the project carried out a process of transformation of live music together with an industrial manufacturing tool exploring music and technology together.