Friday 7 April

Sound x movement x engineering = mechatronic art. The second part of the evening features two live performances. Jon He (Singapore) presents ‘Serrate Study I’ on an ensemble of mechatronic scrapper percussion and ‘g.qin’, a custom-made gestural controller. Bridget Johnson & Jim Murphy (New Zealand) present ‘Pivotal Space’, merging new technologies with natural environments to create a spatial exploration of mechanical, processed, and organic motion, featuring their unique mechatronic instruments ‘swivel’ and ‘speaker.motion’. Introduction and Q&A with Jon He.

Serrate Study 1

pieceSerrate Study I is an electroacoustic work that features a human performer and serraE, an ensemble of mechatronic scrapper percussion. Their interaction is mediated by g.qin, a custom hand gestural controller. The piece explores the amalgamation of ancient and modern sonic territories, to create imagery by the choreography of sound and movement across time and space, as well as between mediums. The ensemble of mechatronic scrappers is developed by re-visioning the yu. Yu (敔) is an ancient Chinese scrapper percussion used to indicate time in Confucian court ritual music, via the musical gestalt of striking the body of the percussion 3 times and scrapping across 27 serrates using a brush mallet. This work marks the preliminary research of the mechanization of historical musical devices and their application in new electroacoustic works.


Jon He is an experimental sound and integrated media artist, researcher and educator. He works within a hybridized culture of art and technology, exploring the frontiers of contemporary sonic and visual arts practices via new and emerging technologies. His works have been published at major international academic conferences/ journals and performed at specialized events and venues. Currently, Jon is a postdoctoral teaching fellow in Sonic Arts with the Humanities division at Yale-NUS College. He recently completed his Ph.D at Victoria University of Wellington. His research presents new tools and methodologies that enable new approaches to guqin music analysis, its documentation, and musical interaction modalities with new technologies.