The perception of space and architecture depends on light and sound, but both need the physical room and its reflections to be perceived, and tell us different things about our environment. Light itself is not visible, it makes things visible. Sound is just air put in motion. What we see is the source of light itself and the effect of light through reflection. And how we perceive space through sound depends on a complex reflection pattern that brings the same sound to our ears in various ways.

As part of 1997’s documenta city program, Michael Vorfeld and Hans Tammen created an immersive visual and sound installation in the Kassel planetarium, using the computer-controlled Zeiss 1015 planetarium projector, set against low-tech light sources such as incandescent lamps, fluorescent light, neon light, light boxes, torches, and slide projectors; and a surround sound performance created with a wide array of mechanical preparations (including brushes, small stones, electric fans, cigarette lighters, Ebows and chopsticks) from guitars, and a theremin.

The performance was generously supported by Kulturstiftung der Kasseler Sparkassen.

HNA Review 1997: Tilting Away with the Earth

“Man´s will is his heaven” – a saying that, like all of it´s kind, bears a core of truth: the inside of the planetarium in the center of the orangerie doesn´t allude to such a heaven at first sight – even less so, when naked lightbulbs of diverse color are tangled with wires, cables, switches and slide projectors in thick wraps.

These were all utensils of “Art-I-Fiction II”, a performance of the Kassel-based musicians Michael Vorfeld and Hans Tammen. While Vorfeld interjected light actions in the projections of the planetarium, Hans Tammen emphasized the atmosphere with acoustic experiments: with live sampling and other alienating effects he manipulated his guitar in a way that created aggressive interferences and voluminous continuing sounds. Those were human interventions in the universe, even though simulated. Especially Vorfeld´s light projections dealt with the theme of human intervention into the cosmos, when he created new galaxies by the light radiations of pocket lamps.

Kassel Planetarium

Performance Flyer