materia vibrante (sonora) is a the most recent manifestation of
an electroacoustic installation developed by Ferracin during a
2015 Largo das Artes’ residency in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
It is an investigation into, and intuitive expression of, the notion
of Universal Consciousness, learning from and bridging to human
cultures that remain in deep contact with indigenous ecosystems
through their animist cosmologies wherein the originating energy
of life-mind resides and is manifest in all things and phenomena.
This project was inspired by Ferracin‘s exposure to shamanic
rites of Brazil’s indigenous peoples and the contemporary
multicultural ambience of Rio de Janeiro. Later, back in Australia,
she travelled to Arnhem Land and visited Bawaka and Bukudal
lands to directly experience Yolŋu Aboriginal understanding of
our universe as an ever negotiated system of balance between
Yirritja (water) and Dhuwa (earth) moiety entities.
At Articulate, materia vibrante (sonora) evolves through different
states. Comprising an array of 32 suspended speaker cones
hanging at navel height in loose clusters, the work begins as
a still, silent, empty sculptural presence imbued with potential.
At the social gathering of the opening night, in the company of
visitor witnesses, the installation is performatively activated by
the simultaneous introduction of immaterial electronic sound
signals and diverse material elements collected by the artist
from a variety of ecological sources. Many were collected on her
daily walks through suburban streets and nearby bushland,
noticing and gathering the changing seasonal offerings.
Ferracin and two assistants gradually add handful samples -
of pollen, sand, earth, water, pumice, feathers, shells, lichens,
seeds, leaves - directly onto the exposed, suspended speaker
cones. Different materials are carefully deposited into each of
the 32 sonic receptacles. Ferracin has experimented in her
studio to identify harmonic resonance relationships between
specific materials, sounds and speaker cones.
The artist’s actions complete this sculptural system of techno-
ecology synthesis. Her multi-track audio composition delivers
selected sounds to each speaker, causing the introduced
materials to vibrate, shake, tremble, dance.