“To accompany each track on the album, interactive design wunderkind Scott Snibbe, the man behind Björk’s Biophilia app album, created an iOS app that contains interactive visualizations for every track on REWORK_.”
We are enormously proud to announce REWORK_ (Philip Glass Remixed). This App Album takes the incredible remix album made in collaboration with Beck that was released last month, and gives it a feature-length interactive visual treatment.
REWORK_ features eleven “music visualizers” that take the remixed tracks and create interactive visuals that range from futuristic three-dimensional landscapes to shattered multicolored crystals, and vibrating sound waves. People can lean back and enjoy REWORK_ end to end, or they can touch and interact with the visualizers to create their own visual remixes.
In addition to the visualizers, the app includes the “Glass Machine” which lets people create music inspired by Philip Glass’ early work by simply sliding two discs around side-by-side, almost like turntables. People can select different instruments – from synthesizer to piano, and generate polyrhythmic counterpoints between the two melodies.
The REWORK_ app features interactive audiovisual mixes by critically acclaimed musicians and remix artists including Beck, Tyondai Braxton, Amon Tobin, Cornelius, Dan Deacon, Johann Johannsson, Nosaj Thing, Memory Tapes, Silver Alert, My Great Ghost, and Peter Broderick.
The app was directed by Scott Snibbe, produced by Ahna Girshick, and engineered by Graham McDermott, with music visualizer programming and design by software artist David Wicks. Lukas Girling designed the Glass Machine and Amon Tobin sequence. Many others helped to make this project come alive, including Philip Glass’ assistant Trevor Gureckis (My Great Ghost) who created miles of MIDI tracks and patiently explained Glass’ idioms at an 8th-grade level. See all the app credits below.
REWORK_ is available exclusively in the iTunes App Store, and is a universal app for iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch.
The “Passion Pit: Gossamer” App is is a new interactive music app for iPad and iPhone released in conjunction with their new album Gossamer. We started with a project at the Webby Awards a couple months ago, doing a video backdrop to their new single “Take a Walk.”
Then we expanded the collaboration to an app “EP” featuring two songs, including a new track: “Carried Away.” Each song can be experienced in two modes – one is an interactive music video, where the sequencing of graphics, animation, and photographs by Mark Borthwick are different every time. And if you touch the screen you make your own unique music video.
The second mode for each song is a “remixer” in which people can create their own music with Passion Pit’s raw material. For “Take a Walk” people can create new melodies on top of a backing track, by creating a kind of harp-string spider web. In the remixer for “Carried Away” all the parts of the song can be turned on and off via touch tiles. Some loop, while others are synth notes. If you’re skilled enough you can actually play the song through, and I’m looking forward to seeing if anyone pulls it off and posts to YouTube.
The imagery for the app is all based on a bubble-like diagram that’s technically called a “Voronoi Diagram.” Snibbe learned about this pattern in college and it always fascinated him because it relates to everything from the structure of cells to the gravitational influence of stars. We chose it for this app because the first song, “Take a Walk” is about the financial bubble, and the hangover healing process coming out of it, so we thought this fragmented bubble imagery fit both metaphorically and psychologically.
High-resolution images can be found below.
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Scott Snibbe was featured in a half-hour program on CNN’s The Next List, which profiles forward-looking thinkers in the fields of technology, science and social change.
Host Dr. Sanjay Gupta, and producer Tracy Dorsey brought her crew to Snibbe’s studio in San Francisco for a three-day shoot that resulted in an intimate and extensive portrait to discuss, among other projects, recent work with James Cameron’s interactive “Avatar” exhibition at the EMP Museum, Bjork’s breakthrough Biophilia App, and the future of interactivity.
Tripolar, an interactive iPhone and iPad app by artist Scott Snibbe, is now officially released in conjunction with the Whitney Museum. It is one of the first artworks commissioned by a major museum to appear as an app for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. Tripolar was commissioned by the Whitney Museum of American Artfor the CODeDOC Exhibition curated by Christiane Paul.
Tripolar animates the tangled, abstract, ever-changing forms a pendulum makes as it swings over a base of three magnets, tracing the path it follows when released from the point you touch. The drawing that results is a chaotic system in which minute changes to the start position produce large changes in the pendulum’s path. By invisibly moving the starting position in microscopic increments towards your finger’s position,Tripolar lets you explore the points between pixels, simulating a resolution thousands of times that of the screen.
Tripolar was commissioned for CODeDOC, an online exhibition curated by Christiane Paul in 2002 for the Whitney Museum’s Artport website that explored the relationship between a software artist’s code and the resulting work of art. The original Java source code demonstrates that changing any of the few parameters determining its operation radically alters the work: in most cases making it non-functional, hanging, exploding, imploding, or oscillating.
Tripolar’s name suggests the connection between mental states and chaotic phenomena: if even a simple physical system is so unpredictable and sensitive to initial conditions, what about our minds? Chaos and complexity reign at all scales.
To further explore the boundary between a software artist’s work and the interactive creations made with “users” of the work, the iPhone and iPad versions of Tripolar allows you to move, add, and remove magnets to create an infinite array of configurations besides the original Tripolar configuration. Once you make a change the the original artist’s configuration, the title of the work changes from Tripolar to Untitled, marking this boundary even more clearly.
After fifteen months of development, and three months of teasing, Björk’s full Biophilia App Album is now available in the iTunes App Store – the world’s first App Album. Enjoy the six new apps: Thunderbolt, Sacrifice, Mutual Core, Hollow, Solstice, and Dark Matter, as well as the already-released Virus, Moon, and Crystalline.
There is some great press coverage today featuring Björk’s inimitable voice and words:
Virus is now available in Björk’s Biophilia! The second app “single” tells the story of a cell attacked by a virus. You can protect the cell by thwarting the virus, but in order to hear the whole song, you must let the viruses win instead. Virus is a game you have to lose in order to win. Watch as viruses latch onto the cell, inject their DNA and reproduce themselves, all while Björk’s beautiful, cheeky love song progresses. The app is a unique combination of gaming, interactive art, music, and science, not quite recognizable as anything you’ve seen before.
Here’s a roundup of some recent press in the first week of its release:
“in some reviews of Biophilia, people said, ‘Wow, I haven’t had this experience in 20 years. Before CDs came out, I’d buy an album and hold the 12-inch cover in my hand, sitting cross-legged on the floor while I listened to the music, read the liner notes, and looked at the pictures.’ People used to have this very tactile, multimedia experience when they bought an album.
But with the digitization of music, we’ve lost that special moment. You can think of the app as, finally, that chance to unwrap the box and have a personal, intimate experience again with music. It might be the case that people spend a lot of time with the app when it first comes out [as they did with album covers] and then perhaps they’ll move on to purely enjoying the music after that. But we’ll really have to wait and see.”
“This is like the birth of cinema. It’s an extremely exciting moment for musicians, for artists, and I think this project is a nice step towards fully leveraging the medium with one of the world’s great artists to see what you can pull off when you get one of the world’s greatest musicians and some of the world’s top developers in interactivity to work together. And I think you’ll see a lot more of it. I know the artists want to embrace it, and if the record companies and labels can find a way to make this work financially and contractually for the artists, I think everyone will really thrive.”