Picture Window

Now in its third year at Sonica, Picture Window is an ongoing public art projection project that transforms windows into screens after dark. For 2015, Picture Window focuses on the concept of song and its role and use within societies and culture.

Picture Window’s format subverts the expected, transforming the fabric of the city into a platform for new media art. Expanding the possible interpretations of a building’s structure and use, Picture Window allows the audience to reimagine the city and their place within it.

Johanna Billing // Magical World // Lost Without Your Rhythm 

Weaving music, movement and rhythm, Johanna Billing uses film to connect differing modes of performance and places subtle emphasis on the representation of individuals within changing societal contexts.

Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries // The Struggle Continues (Dance Version) 

Young-Hae Chang Heavy Industries is an artist collective made up Young-Hae Chang and Marc Voge. Their work is characterised by text-based animation that is highly synchronised to an original dance score.

Emerging Artist Space: Joanna Peace 

Programmed through open call, Picture Window has partnered with Market Gallery for Sonica 2015 to host an emerging Scottish based artist to realise and present new work within this artist-run gallery setting.

Picture Window was founded with a commitment to creating opportunities for Scotland’s vibrant community of early career artists and are delighted to partner with Market Gallery, offering a platform for the production and showcase of new work in response to the theme of song and music, and its role and use within societies and culture.

Mirror Lands

Still but full of movement; quiet but full of sound; nothing is quite as it seems…

Mirror Lands is an absorbing and dreamlike portrait of The Black Isle, an ever-changing peninsula in the Highlands of Scotland supporting a delicate balance between nature, industry and rural life.

Contrasting local voices intermingle, rising and falling across lingering shots of land, sea and air, sharing personal memories, feelings and experiences of this curious place. Sounds of the natural and man-made world are woven together with Mark Lyken and Emma Dove’s original score creating a unique audio visual experience that explores the complex relationships between people and place.

Rocking Chairs

Strijbos & Van Rijswijk invite you to sit back, relax and enjoy making music in a one-of-a-kind sonic rocking chair, where physical movement diffuses and modifies sound emanating from specially developed sensorpack and loudspeaker technology. Swaying back and forth produces an interactive, personalized performance where the compositions you hear are directly shaped by your individual movements and ability to coordinate and work in unison with your fellow rockers.

Oscillon Response

Composer and visual artist Mark Lyken interprets the forefather of Electronic Art, Ben F Laposky’s pioneering “Oscillon” Electronic Abstractions. Working in collaboration with Sanford Museum, Iowa this Cryptic commission for Sonica 2015 merges Lyken’s sonic responses and visualisations with Laposky’s groundbreaking 1950’s art works.

Responding to a selection of six strikingly different photographic works capturing complex, rhythmic waveforms, not only are Laposky’s images a visual inspiration for Lyken’s compositions but the original process behind the creation of the artworks has been utilised to generate the accompanying visuals for the performance.

M.E.S.S. Live

Melbourne Electronic Sound Studio (M.E.S.S.) is a newly formed organisation dedicated to the preservation of unique electronic musical instruments and to ensuring their ongoing use by individuals and community groups. The organisation is passionate about electronic sound and electronic music from the avant garde through to obscure production music. The two founding directors are audio-visual artist and composer Robin Fox, and composer and sound designer Byron Scullin.

Sonica 2015 marks the premiere of M.E.S.S. Live where samples recorded at the studio in Melbourne on some of the rarest synthesizers in the world are organised and performed as one 50 minute set.

The machines used range from one of only three existing EMS VCS1 synths (and the only functioning one) anywhere in the world, a Transaudio Pro Case 6 – never heard of it? There are only two of them and they were made in Melbourne in 1976 – amongst a host of classics from Buchla and Roland to Moog and, of course, the classic 808 drum machine.

15 Seconds

15 Seconds is part of an ongoing series of site specific performances by musician and sound artist Lauren Sarah Hayes. Evoking the unique aural and visual qualities of the iconic Hamilton Mausoleum, boasting the longest echo in any man-made structure, her work offers an intimate concert experience, where the music is formed out of a relationship with the unique architecture of the building.  Accompanied by sonically responsive flash light bulbs, the acoustic and visual possibilities of this remarkable landmark are truly revealed.


Explore Glasgow’s once treasured and now forgotten streams using Kathy Hinde’s interactive sound map, SUBMERGE.

Combining intriguing underwater sounds, with scientific data from OPAL Community Scientist Joanne Dempster, and the laboratories of Glasgow Scientific Services, this is an opportunity to learn more about Glasgow’s underwater ecology and discover the various life forms found in the most unlikely of places across the city.


Throughout the troubled production of Fitzcarraldo (1982), a film about a rubber baron who strives to build an opera house deep in the Peruvian jungle, the German filmmaker Werner Herzog kept vivid and shocking diaries which he published years later as the book Conquest of the Useless.

Caruso (Gold is the sweat of the sun), is inspired by Herzog’s initial image which drove him to make the film.

Scored for electric guitar, performed by Fennessy and Pete Dowling, who are accompanied by a ‘choir’ of Caruso gramophone recordings, this is a musical journey both obsessive and healing.


Based on CØV’s ongoing project TranscendingEtanan explores the psychological associations of modal music, microtonal scales and light, modulating the frequency and patterns to mentally link the various sensory inputs. It is designed using the properties of rhythm and frequency that lead to brain entrainment.

Order and After

Upcoming Indonesian artist Jompet Kuswidananto is part of an energetic, community-driven art scene in Yogyakarta and is renowned for his multimedia installations that often combine video, sound and mechanized elements.

Especially commissioned by Cryptic for Sonica 2015, Kuswidananto’s work deals with the elusive representation of Indonesian identity. Inspired by continuous transition, Order and After is focused on the period known as Reformasi, a democratic change that allowed for greater freedom of expression within the arts.


In celebration of the UNESCO International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies, emerging artists Wintour’s Leap present their first major installation, Helmholtz, commissioned as part of Imogen Heap’s Reverb Festival, at The Roundhouse, 2014.

Using tiny LED lights that visualize sound, Helmholtz is a truly interactive experience that engages participants in the creative exploration of sound, light and technology.



First commissioned by Southbank Centre, London, the Giant Feedback Organ is a powerful custom-built pipe instrument that has been re-configured as CONTRA, an interactive sub-bass sound installation where deep drones emanate, interplay and reverberate around the room.


TRANSDUCER & Fluorophone

Speak Percussion, Australia’s most innovative percussive ensemble collaborate with audio-visual artist and Sonica favourite Robin Fox, on a journey into unchartered sonic territory.

Inspired by Stockhausen’s seminal work MIKROPHONIE I, TRANSDUCER is an electro-acoustic spatialised performance work that places the microphone centre stage and redefines its function and potential as an expressive musical object.

Featuring compositions by Løffler, Ughetti and Fox, Fluorophone moves between music concrète and virtuosic instrumentalism, in a synaesthetic display of light and sound.

Onion Skin

French visual artist and co-founder of Antivj, Olivier Ratsi’s creative process considers objective reality, time, space and matter as intangible elements of information and uses these notions through installations that aim to question our perception of space.

Part of the Echolyse project, Onion Skin is a visually immersive, hypnotic work that creates a fictional, three-dimensional environment using perspective mapping, with a score composed by fellow Antivj artist Thomas Vaquié.

Concept, visual design: Olivier Ratsi // Music: Thomas Vaquié // Label: Antivj // Producer: Nicolas Boritch

The Terrestrial Sea & Soft Revolvers

The intersection between nature, culture and technology…

Mark Lyken worked alongside ecologists at Aberdeen University’s Lighthouse Field Station in Cromarty between 2012 and 2014. The Terrestrial Sea is the culmination of that work, highlighting the diverse and ever-changing environments of the Cromarty Firth that the ecologists are studying through music and film.

For this special Cryptic production, Lyken and award winning filmmaker, Emma Dove returned to the Lighthouse to create a new film for live performance.

Constructed from four-illuminated spinning tops, Myriam Bleau’s Soft Revolvers is an electronic music performance that uses motion data to generate playful musical patterns. With their luminous spinning bodies, the tops strongly evoke turntables and DJ culture, hip-hop and dance music.

Synap.sys & The Age of Digital / Analogue

Inspired by the work of Malevich and Kandinsky, Synap.sys creates a seamless narrative between sound, image and the emotive memories they arouse. Using a custom-built instrument and real-time visuals that symbolise receptive links and connections occurring between sensory neurons in the human brain, Henrique Roscoe forms an audio-visual symphony where pitch, harmony and rhythm are synchronised with laser generated colours, shapes and animations.

Having last performed in Scotland in 2012 at Cryptic Nights, Sisi Lu was awarded a 2013 Sky Academy Arts Scholarship to create The Age of Digital / Analogue. Exploring the relationship between man, machine and landscape, his work is a cinematic journey that combines live performance with digital modes of expression. Using elements of pop culture, music, film and sound design, this is a story of contrasts where the physical and digital complement and enhance one another.

Tipping Point

Audio visual artist and composer Kathy Hinde explores the sonic complexities and possibilities of combining glass vessels with shifting water levels in this Cryptic commission for Sonica 2014. Sound tones are produced live via a microphone that feeds back inside each glass vessel. As the water levels change, the feedback is tuned to different pitches based on the resonant frequency of the remaining space in each glass vessel. The work forms both a sound sculpture and a live instrument for performance.


The drama of the skies… a timeless story of love and loss during the outbreak of World War I.

WINGS, the 1927 Academy Award-winning silent movie by William A. Wellman is given a new life with live score for electronics and percussion performed by Sleichim and Belgian collective BL!NDMAN. Interlaced with fragments and quotations from 20th century percussive repertoire including works by Xenakis, Stockhausen, Reich, Cage, Scelsi, Billone, Tenney, Takemitsu and Wolfe, the romantic plot, impressive flight sequences and numbing absurdity of war are examined in an emotive musical spectacular.

LINK.C, AfterShock & Seismic

A triple bill performance by multifaceted audio-cinematic sculptor, Herman Kolgen of his audio-visual masterpieces, AfterShock and Seismik, along with the UK première of LINK.C, a moving, elliptical representation of our urban areas, based on Philip Glass’ String Quartet No. 2 and performed by the Maxwell Quartet.

AfterShock explores harsh post-human landscapes and the destructive consequences of brutal topological shocks beneath the Earth’s surface. Frictional resistance, fossil earthquakes and magnetic waves result in Seismik a frequency-fraught, tension charged performance that taps into seismic waves and the Earth’s tremor-related phenomena in real-time. True to Kolgen’s conceptual preoccupations and radiographic approach, he renders the invisible visible, generating abstracted sound and dramatic visuals.

String Quartet No. 2 (Company) by Philip Glass. ©1983 Dunvagen Music Publishers, Inc. Used by permission.

The New Alps

Following its successful showing at Fort du Bruissin’s Centre d’Art Contemporain in Franchville, Lyon, visual artist Robbie Thomson presents his immersive sculptural work, The New Alps.

A kinetic installation of mechanical sculptures that imagines a disorienting futuristic landscape populated by robotic inhabitants, this Cryptic commission for Sonica 2015 is inspired by the monumental interventions humans have made on the planet in activities such as mining and damming – creating manufactured landscapes that exist out with geological time.