Ed Osborn: Harvester

  • ©, Ed Osborn, Harvester



Artist(s) and People Involved:


Artist Statement:


    Harvester is an installation that employs sound, kinetic elements, and interactivity to create a shifting audio field from a system of controlled feedback.

    In Harvester the sounds heard are derived from the piece itself: a set of feedback tones that arise naturally from the electronic components. These tones are a real-time monitor of the status of the piece as it moves and changes. Harvester is constructed using a set of microphones held at the ends of slender, flexible support stands and moved by electric motors. The stands are distributed around a space so that visitors can walk among them. The microphones pick up ambient sounds, including their own amplified signal. These sounds are processed and sent to the speakers resulting in a feedback network whose sound varies as microphones move.

    As visitors move through Harvester, they can affect its behaviour by their physical presence in the path of the sound. The interaction in Harvester occurs without the visitor having to actively address any sort of technology; both the visitor input and its results occur in real physical space. It is a form of interaction that is both complex and subtle, one that is intuitively engaging and rewards extended interaction. The installation allows participation in a kind of living system that is both a metaphor for the myriad ways in which electronic and physical acoustic spaces are mapped onto one another, and an example of exactly such a space.