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Jaaga voice – embodied

June 15, 2011
Jaaga-sculpture

In addition to the technical work (Natural Language Processing and Speech Synthesis) I am doing here at Jaaga, I am also working on a sculptural component of the piece. The idea is to really highlight this collision between global/local and high/low tech that is so representative of Jaaga, Bangalore, and India more generally – by embodying this concept in a sculptural form.

About 2 weeks ago I visited a great museum here in Bangalore called CKP and was entranced by this body of indian sculpture by the Bastar tribe of Chhattisgarh. These works are built of appropriated scrap metal from tin trunks which were once quite common here. The metal is reworked and embossed to create life size abstract yet figurative sculptures. I love how they straddle this line between looking ancient and looking almost robotic (note the joints fused with rivets). It seemed like an ideal form from which to derive the body of Jaaga voice.

We started with some scraps of rusty steel and with much perseverance and assistance from the amazing helpful tech Kiran, the sculpture is taking shape. See in the images a few of the sculptures which originally inspired me as well as our piece unfolding – or rather folding together! Hope to have it standing tomorrow.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Winston Hagborg permalink
    June 16, 2011 12:09 pm

    Looks very interesting and very different for you? I will be interested to see what you come up with. Dad

    • June 16, 2011 1:43 pm

      In some ways, yes a departure. From my perspective though the form continues a line of thought or an inclination stemming all the way back to netlingua – totem – jaaga. This interest in 1. bringing physical form and sound and algorithms together 2. and interest in abstract, vaguely figurative shapes that exist somewhere between the primitive and the robotic. I enjoy the similarities of our perceptions of both these types of icons.

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