Samantha Vilkins, Michael Vilkins | Australia WAVE MACHINE

Human vs Synthesizer - who does it better?

Wave Machine explores the idea of a ‘perfect sound’. What do we consider to be perfect, and how do we create it? Analog instruments are limited to the waveforms they can produce. A car horn cannot replicate the sound of a cello, and every cello will sound slightly different to each other. Digital waveforms are generated with the precision and accuracy of mathematical formulas — we can make a waveform to any specification, altering and inventing sound. Digital signals can be replicated perfectly, over and over again. Is an electronic musical note more ‘perfect’ than its analogue counterparts? Synthesizers use a combination of many layered electrical waveforms to approximate real-world instrument sounds. Be part of a live, visual juxtaposition of synthetic sound and the familiar human voice amongst a wall of oscilloscopes.

Image: Gavan Mitchell

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The Artist: Samantha Vilkins

Samantha Vilkins is a PhD candidate in science communication and Communications and Engagement Officer at the Australian National Centre for the Public Awareness of Science at The Australian National University in Canberra. She has a scintillating and mysterious past in discrete mathematics and computational science, and still sees graph theory everywhere. Her work has been on display at the National Museum and the National Library, and her research focuses on what gets left behind by metrics and statistics.

The Artist: Michael Vilkins

Michael Vilkins is an author, producer, and performer from the Queensland Conservatorium. He’s performed his children’s picture book (“THE BEE’S SNEEZE”) at schools around Australia, and at the Somerset Celebration of Literature Festival. His podcasts have let him interview some of Australia’s best athletes, scientists, rock stars, comedians, and librarians. His podcasts have been nominated for industry awards, and are being preserved by the National Film and Sound Archive.

12.09.2018 - 03.11.2018 Perfection

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