did a really fun workshop on how to construct acoustic laptops.
In a lighthearted and comical presentation at the end of the week,
he said they were not meant as an "anti-laptop"statement,
as he uses them frequently and also makes music with them - but
to highlight the computers' rather narrow interface." - XLterrestrials
acoustic laptops work well as target objects in a workshop setting.
The boxes in themselves are open to input, and I have had good
experiences with people from various backgrounds - artistic, musical
or neither, getting together and gather around them.
a one or two sessions each workshop participant will create his/her
own acoustic laptop to bring home.
friendly appearance and low-threshold "interface" of
the boxes work as an equalizer regarding status or previous knowledge.
These workshops are not about "circuit-bending", where the focus
is usually put on the technical aspects of building your own musical
tiny microphones needed will be quickly soldered and connected,
leaving more time for selecting and testing of objects to put
inside the box, exploring new depths of reality through sound.
always strive to create a comfort zone that in itself inspires
creativity and reflection. This in turn leads to dynamic discussions
and surprising lines of association. It is important to make each
participant feel welcome and included, the workshop progress should
be as democratic as these boxes are.
workshops for children:
are certain aspects that can be tuned down, like the practical/technical
issues (soldering, etc.) to allow more focus on sound exploration
and the fun of making the boxes. Sometimes the children participate
in groups, and parents are usually welcomed (to help out with
the hot gluegun and such).
from 6-15 years work well. The emphasis can be finely "tuned"
into the main thematic field of the organizer; themes like sound
exploration, reframing of objects, recycling etc...
Optimally over 2 days (ca 4 hours each), or one day (ca 4 + 3
hours + break)
organiser must have:
Various tools (drill, soldering irons, glueguns, scissors, tiny
A little linemixer* and small sound system/active speakers (for
to second hand stores or waste heaps
Extra "found possible sound objects" and woodboxes for
participants that don´t bring their own
Some fruit or cookies, water, coffee
I normally bring a line-mixer
participant should bring:
wood box (cigar box or similar, try to avoid felt/paper linings)
As many tiny items that might create sound as possible (brushes,
toy motors, pins, string, springs, etc.)