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Digital Art / New Media > Installation

Visionaries 21 : The aesthetic of sensory overload

The work of Ulf Langheinrich

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Visionaries 21 : The aesthetic of sensory overload


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DVD Price $220
Streaming Price (1 year) $220
Streaming Price (1 year) + DVD $330
Streaming Price (3 years) $528
Streaming Price (3 years) + DVD $638

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2 DVDs

These DVDs are a unique compilation of the works conceived and created by Ulf Langheinrich between 2002 – 2010. His projects utilise photography, sound and video, light, and technology, to create sensory environments that seek to question the conventions of multimedia.

The videos in this compilation are based on original HD videos that often have aesthetically crucial frame rates of 30 or even 60 fps, some are monochromatic 3D-images.
For these DVDs, they are rescaled, reframed, retimed and sometimes remixed excerpts for PAL single screen playback. These unique creations are de-contextualized since the original material is part of installations or performances requiring specific conditions and additional technical elements such as stroboscopic flash patterns. The contrast range and interference patterns between stroboscopic lights and flickering video as used in many of the featured original works can not be conveyed here.

The second DVD is a collection of mostly short documentations.
LAND is stereoscopic, it requires red/cyan glasses in this DVD version.
All videos containing flickering material (including OSC) may not play back glitch free on some displays.

DRIFT (movie with live sound) - premiere: 2005 Ars Electronica, Linz
original length: 50 min
original source format: 1920x1080 — 30 FPS
original display: large cinematic projection
original sound: 4.1, live mix of multiple tracks
concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
compositing assistance: Wolfgang Schwarzenbrunner, Tanja Tomic
original playback software: Dirk Langheinrich
production: ACMI, Melbourne
co-production: Epidemic, Paris and Muffatwerk, Munich
supported by: Kulturstiftung des Bundes, Siemens Kuturstiftung, Federal Chancellery of
Austria, Department of the Arts, RMIT, Melbourne, Goethe Institut, Melbourne. DRIFT is an abstract HD-movie that has been performed in several versions. Various soundtracks were developed including live orchestra versions (not used in this DVD).

DRIFT-LINE-BLUE (performance) - premiere: 2009 MACBA, Barcelona
original length: 60 min
original source format: 1920x1080 — 50 FPS
original display: large cinematic projection
original sound: 4.1, live mix of multiple tracks and generated sound concept, compositing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
MAX MSP / Logic environment: Matthias Haertig, Ulf Langheinrich
additional modules: Chan Ho Choi, Chau Kwan Ki

WAVEFORM A (installation) - premiere: 2005 ACMI, Melbourne
original length: 30 min, loop
original source format: 4 x 720x568, 4 DVDs in sync
original display: 4 x vertical white plates 3.5 m x 2.5 m hanging next to each other in black cube, original sound: 4.1
concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
compositing assistance: Wolfgang Schwarzenbrunner
compositing assistance: Gerhard Daurer
production: ACMI, Melbourne

WAVEFORM B
(installation) - premiere: 2005 Lentos Museum, Linz
original length: 31 min, loop
original source format: 4 x 1280x1024 — 25 FPS
original display: 1 long field on floor out of same source 8 stroboscopic flash lights (4 x blue / 4 x white), black cube
original sound: 4.1 flying speakers
concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
original multi-layer control software: Dirk Langheinrich
commissioned and produced by: Ars Electronica / Siemens Kulturstiftung

MOVEMENT C (performance) - premiere: 2012 Transart, Bolzano
original length: 60 min
original source format: 2 x 1280x720 into stereoscopic image live processed and mixed with other images
original display: stereoscopic image onto one silver screen pure red filter in front of lens for enhanced colour purity additional pure red flash light
original sound: 4.1
concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
original body performance: Maureen Law
MAX MSP environment: Matthias Haertig, Ardrian Hardjono
compositing assistance: Chan Ho Choi
production: Epidemic, Paris
co-production: European Center for the Arts, Hellerau, Dresden
MOVEMENT C is a live show including live solo dance in the first part.

MOVEMENT X (installation) - premiere: 2010 Le Fresnoy, Tourcoing
original length: video 28 min, sound 34 min, non sync looped
original source format: 2 x 1440x1050 — 30 FPS
original display: stereoscopic image onto one silver screen, red filter in front of lens for enhanced colour purity, additional pure red flash light, black cube, original sound: 4.1
concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
original body performance: Toshiko Oiwa
original multi-layer control software: Dirk Langheinrich
production: Epidemic, Paris
co-production: Le Fresnoy, Studio national des arts contemporains, Tourcoing

MOVEMENT Y (installation)
premiere: 2012 Run Run Shaw Centre, Hong Kong
original length: 30 min
original source format: 4 x 720x1280 — 30 FPS
original display: 4 x vertical white plates 3.5 m x 2.5 m hanging next to each other in black cube, original sound: 4.1
concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
original body performance: Toshiko Oiwa
Second excerpt on DVD is a close up of one screen in original resolution.

SOIL (installation) - premiere: 2008 Sonic Acts, Amsterdam
original length: 6:00 min, 6:01 min, 6:02 min, 6:03 min, loops
original source format: 4 x PAL wide of 4 DVDs, no sync.
original display: 4 x plates 3 x 2 m hanging next to each other in black cube, original sound: 4 x stereo
concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich

OSC (installation) - premiere: 2005 Zendai MoMA, Shanghai
original length: 30 min
original source format: 1280x1024 — 60 FPS
original display: whole white wall variable dimension 8 stroboscopic flash lights (4 x blue / 4 x white) black cube
original sound: monophonic out of multiple speakers
concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
original multi-layer control software: Dirk Langheinrich

MOVEMENT A (performance) - premiere: 2007 CynetArt, Dresden
original length: 60 min
original source format: 1280x1024 — 25 FPS
original display: screen on floor, 16 stroboscopic flash lights
(8 x red / 4 x white), black cube, original sound: 8.1
concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
live performance: Toshiko Oiwa
original multi-layer control software: Dirk Langheinrich
production: TMA Hellerau

HEMISPHERE (installation)
premiere: 2006 Palladium, Romaeuropa, Roma
original length: 25 min, loop
original source format: 2880x2880 — 25 FPS
original display: 5 projections into hemispheric white surface,
8 stroboscopic flash lights (4 x red / 4 x white), original sound: 6.1 (speakers in circle) concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
compositing assistance: Wolfgang Schwarzenbrunner, Brandon Tay
original multi-layer control software and hemispheric set up: Dirk Langheinrich
hemispherical display design: Dietmar Lupfer, Muffatwerk, Munich
production: Muffatwerk, Munich
co-production: Epidemic, Paris
supported by: Kulturstiftung des Bundes (Germany)

LAND (installation) - premiere: 2008 FACT - Liverpool Biennial, Liverpool
original length: 28 min, loop
original source format: 2 x 1920x1080 — 30 FPS
original display: stereoscopic image onto one silver screen, 8 stroboscopic flash lights (4 x blue / 4 x white), black cube, original sound: 4.1
concept, compositing, editing and original composition: Ulf Langheinrich
TX transformation software and initial playback environment: Dirk Langheinrich MAX MSP environment: Matthias Haertig
commissioned and co-produced by: Liverpool Biennial
co-production and presentation: FACT, Liverpool

On the eve of his first solo release, Degrees of Amnesia, Langheinrich has an understanding of his work and the life that brought him to it, that is unparalleled. Having grown up in an industrial region of East Germany, Langheinrich's early life was filled with artificial and sterile imagery and sounds. He was born in Wolfen in 1960, and spent his first year in hospital with a life-threatening ear disease (it was actually six years before his hearing returned to normal), which certainly did much in shaping what he would hear throughout his life and the manner in which he would listen.

Langheinrich grew to understand and appreciate life, and his ability to experience it through his senses, in a way which few people ever do. Growing up with nearly every liberty removed from his existence, save that of his sensual freedom, Langheinrich came to respect the most basic human experience. Certainly passing the first six years of his life with a hearing disability, made sound and music essential to him as an artist. Ironically, the majority of his education in the arts was spent drawing and painting. At the age of 15 Langheinrich discovered the ability to store sound through the use of a small mono cassette recorder. From then on he was fascinated by the use of electronic devices in the making of music because through the possibility of storage, he discovered the ability to layer.

The significance of storage for him was that the approach and overall vision of the artist now had the potential to be, as it should be, more important than his individual skill; composition versus performance, perhaps ultimately the biggest difference between Degrees of Amnesia and his work with Granular Synthesis. While Granular Synthesis was designed to be a live experience, a performance - Degrees of Amnesia is a work composed to retain intense psychological power over time, it's density being the key element. Every sound, particularly those that are formed in repetitious patterns (from the sound of breath, to drops of water, to the pounding of industrial machinery) became influential and important in Langheinrich's early life. Not only because this repetition was a constant reminder of the opression he lived with, but because it is the sonic quality of such repetition he believes, that brings one to a state of semi-consciousness; an altered state of reality. In describing Degrees of Amnesia he refers to his work as a painter; "In painting I just added very thin coats of paint until the square was almost gray, huge paintings of insistent noise, not made with simple mixed paint but with layers of colour, very rich, very purist, very monotonous in the end."

It is the power of layers, the sensual experience, that concerns Langheinrich more so than any conceptual agenda. It was these same paintings which he would later sell to buy sythesizers. Although Langheinrich discovered the ability to store sounds and then layer them at such an early age, it was not until his departure from East Germany in 1984 that he gained access to any electronic equipment, apart from minimal tape recording devices. He spent much of his time prior to 1984, experimenting with the sonic qualities of various instruments. Langheinrich was more concerned with non-traditional methods of creating sound, than he was with mastering any given instrument. Rather than play an organs keys, Langheinrich fixed them and maneuvered it's pipes, he played a cello with an electric shaver - all in the effort to achieve the richest most dense sounds possible. This search for sound, which began so long before he even had the advantage of electronic equipment, has only now come to fruition with the release of Degrees of Amnesia. Although this album contains work from as far back as 1989 (most of it was conceived between 1994 and 1996) the development of Langheinrich's artistic purpose clearly began in childhood. In addition to Langheinrich's work as a musician and painter, he also spent some time studying photography, and has composed the soundtrack for several Austrian films.

When he moved to West Germany in 1984, he set up a studio for electronic music, developed the basics of his musical language and engaged in painting, drawing and photography. In 1988, he left for Vienna where a studio at the WUK (Werkstätten und Kulturhaus) was put at his disposal. From 1988 to 1991, he devoted himself again to regular painting and drawing, had a solo exhibition at Kunsthalle Exnergasse and released a catalogue of his work.

In 1991, he and Kurt Hentschläger founded the Media-Art duet GRANULAR-SYNTHESIS and have realised for more than a decade a number of international large scale projects including MODELL5, NOISEGATE and POL. They exhibited and performed at the Museum for applied Arts ICA London, Hull Time based Art, MAK Vienna, Museums of Contemporary Arts of Lyons, Montreal and Seoul, The Stedelijk Museum, Kunstverein Hanover, ISEA Montreal and Liverpool, ICC Tokyo, Creative Time New York and the Austrian Pavilion at the Venice Biennial 2001.

GRANULAR-SYNTHESIS received an Austrian state stipendium, a PS1 stipendium and the first prize of the International Biennial in Nagoya. The work is published on a number of DVDs including REMIX/INDEX (Austria) and IMMERSIVE WORKS (ZKM/Cantz).
Ulf Langheinrich also released a solo CD, DEGREES OF AMNESIA at Asphodel in San Francisco.

He composed SINKEN for symphonic orchestra and electronic as a part of the DANGEROUS VISIONS project commissioned and performed by Orchestre National de Lille and Art Zoyd. Later, SINKEN was also performed by the National Orchestra of Mexico and Tonkünstler-Orchester Niederösterreich. MINUS for the grand pipe organ of the Viennese Konzerthaus was commissioned and presented as the opening concert by Wien Modern in 2002.

Since 2003, Ulf Langheinrich has started to realise various large scale solo projects including DRIFT, WAVEFORM, HEMISPHERE (hemispheric film on a suspended dome granted by the Federal Culture Foundation of Germany and his first stereoscopic film commissioned by Liverpool Biennial ‘08, LAND. His artworks were exhibited among others, in Barcelona (MACBA), Berlin (Martin-Gropius-Bau), Dresden (Hellerau European Center for the Arts), Eindhoven (STRP Festival), Gent (Film Festival), Hong Kong (Run Run Shaw Centre), Madrid (ARCO), Melbourne (ACMI), Moscow (Red October and Platforma Winzavod Art Centre), Perth (PICA), Roma (Romaeuropa Festival, Palladium, MACRO-La Pelanda), Rotterdam (DEAF), Seoul (Incheon Digital Arts Festival), Shanghai (Zendai MoMA, Shanghai Sculpture Space and Science and Technology Museum), Taipei (Taipei Fine Arts Museum), Vienna (Wien Modern).

In 2005, he got a Siemens stipendium and was “Featured artist” at Ars Electronica Festival.
SYNTONY (for cello, English horn, French horn, bass-clarinet, javanese gongs, electronic and HD image) was commissioned and presented by Festival d’Art Lyrique of Aix-en-Provence in 2005. DRIFT LIVE (for three bass-clarinets, three bassoons, electronic and HD image) was commissioned and presented by Wien Modern in 2006. KU (for pipe organ, electronic and stereoscopic image) was commissioned and presented by TONLAGEN Festival for contemporary music, Dresden in 2010. In 2011, MOVEMENT B was performed for the opening of the Hong Kong City University School of Creative Media, where Ulf Langheinrich is currently Visiting Fellow.

In 2012, MOVEMENT C, co-produced by Hellerau European Center for the Arts, was performed as opening of Transart Festival in Bolzano (Italy)and later at CynetArt in Dresden.
He was Guest Professor at HGB University for Graphics and Book Design Leipzig (Germany), Guest artist and Lecturer of audiovisual Design at FH Salzburg (Austria), at RMIT in Melbourne (Australia) and at China University of Art in Hangzhou (China) and Guest Artist and Professor at Le Fresnoy, Studio national des arts contemporains in Tourcoing (France.

He collaborates with Japanese dancers Akemi Takeya (CE_I, WEATHERING) and Toshiko Oiwa (MOVEMENT A, MOVEMENT X, MOVEMENT Y) as well as with Chinese dancer Maureen Law (MOVEMENT C) and British artist Gina Czarnecki (SPINTEX.

Granular Synthesis won the first prize at the International Biennale, Nagayo, Japan in 1995 and have had their work published on number of DVDs.

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