Robert Jarvis

Concerto for Light Sculpture (2012) 

Robert Jarvis

Robert Jarvis is a Melbourne based, audio-visual artist.  Specializing in Jazz Bass he completed his Bachelor of Music (Hons) at the Elder Conservatorium, Adelaide, in 2006. Since then he has worked in the fields of music, video production and software development. Robert has made two records of experimental indietronica pop music under the pseudonym Zeal, the latest With the Moon Alongside Racing Us Home was Sydney community radio station 2FBi’s album of the week.  His animated music videos for bands have shown at The St Kilda Film Festival, The Future Film Festival and Portable Film Festival. He also develops software for music and video performance and in 2009 released Axis, a tool for enabling a Guitar Hero controller to be played as an expressive musical instrument. ‘VIZZable’, his suite of video performance plugins for the music performance software Ableton Live, has been downloaded over 10,000 times and has attracted a strong community of performers and developers. He is currently studying his Masters in Computer Science at RMIT as well as producing an animated music video for the Sydney duo Agnes Kain.

Web links & you tube links:

Favourite concerto?

Chick Corea's Spain for Sextet and Orchestra

Career Highlight?

Watching the first music video I'd ever made being screened at the St Kilda Film Festival in a packed theatre.

What inspired you to compose this piece?

Musically, the piece is inspired by much of Steve Reich’s work, in particular, Music for 18 Musicians and Music for Large Ensemble. Visually, the piece is about data visualization, the mutual re-enforcing of musical and visual patterns and the emerging artforms arising from augmented reality.

What should the audience look out for when listening?

The light sculpture is designed to be played completely live, just like a musical instrument.  A digital musical interface called a Monome, with notes set out much like a guitar, is used to play both sound and light in tight sync. The piece is written to explore the interplay of musical and visual patterns.

How has technology changed your relationship to making and listening to music?

I'm excited by technology's growth and how it empowers people to create things that were previously impossible.  Any acoustic musical instrument is a piece of technology and if someone hadn't created it, entire genres wouldn't exist.  I like to work on the edge of technology, making tools and processes that might contribute to future artforms and deeper levels of creative expression.