Electric Rain

Sound installation.
Speakers and electronics.
Exhibited at Atelier Nord, September 2018.

Rain as a resonant and climatic phenomena is the point of departure for the site specific sound installation Electric Rain. Water is essential for all life on earth, and rain is a central part of the circulation of water. Rain is the result of large climate systems, but is also a complex sound phenomena.

The auditive qualities of rain can seem arbitrary, but there are complex systems involved; the distribution of each drops position, size and quantity are some of the many elements that affect the sound of rain. In the installation Electric Rain the resonant properties of rain are explored through a large number of sound-objects. Ninety six individually controlled speakers are situated in the gallery space, enveloping the listener in a three dimensional and spatial soundscape. The soundscape is colored by the acoustic properties of the room and by the movement of visitors. A custom-developed software package controls sound variables such as drop-size, quantity and duration. This allows the rain sound to be experienced through several permutations; from a light drizzle to tropical storm.

With Electric Rain, the work with sound as signifying communication and abstract resonance is continued from earlier installations. Rain is a complex phenomenon which is part of climate processes and shapes ecosystems. Rain affects solar irradiance, ocean currents, geological conditions as well as human activities. And as such, changes in rainfall can indicate changes in climactic conditions. In Electric Rain, these processes are the basis for a bodily and sculptural soundscape.

Electric Rain was supported by Billedkunstnernes Vederlagsfond, Komponistenes Vederlagsfond og Norsk kulturfond.

The exhibition is produced by Atelier Nord in collaboration with Ultima and Notam and opened September 6 2018.

Technology developed and produced at Notam by Asbjørn Blokkum Flø, Thom Johansen and Hans Wilmers.

Special thanks to Bitraf, Jon Ole Flø, Silje Høgevold, Ane Melhuus Jenssen, Thom Johansen, Nikolai Kolstad, Astrid Midtbø, Erla Silfá Hordvik Thorgrímsdóttir, Hans Wilmers, Dennis Reksten and Elektrisk Regn.

More on Electric Rain:
Cerpina, Zane 2019. Electric Rain.
Gjessing, Mona Dorothea 2018. En herlig følelse (in Norwegian only).
Rudi, Jøran 2018. About the Construction of Electric Rain.

Kristin Kverndokk: Elektrisk regn. Spillerom søndag, NRK P2, 11. November 2018 (radio broadcast, in Norwegian only).

Sound mix and video editing: Asbjørn Blokkum Flø
Video photography: Morten Rustad

Photo: Ivan Brodey.