May 15, 2017

Saturday. I undertook a radical reconfiguration of the performance sound set up. The sampler/loopers were both placed in the decks mixer’s send and return loop and linked together in series, rather than in parallel (as they were previously). I also introduced a TC Electronic Mimiq effector into the send and return loop to improve the spread of the sonic image at the output end. Unlike the delay effector (which was removed last week), the Mimiq does not colour the signal; instead, the device subtly doubles and separates it across the stereo field:

Today. I was recovering from a poor food reaction, which I suffered yesterday; this has left me nauseous, washed out, and aching from top to toe. Sometimes, I wish my immunity could be as easily remedied as my sound system. 8.30 am: This is the first of two weeks’ assessments (which will begin tomorrow). But, this morning, medical appointments needed to be rearrange and initiated; tutorials, confirmed; and postgraduate reports, composed. ‘The spirit is willing, but the flesh is week’.

I require structure. As such, improvisation (for me) cannot be a open-ended, free-for-all free fall. Demarcations, developmental phases, directionality, resolution, and technical and methodological constraints must, together, provide a framework within which in-the-moment and responsive activity can take place. In short, spontaneity doesn’t obviate the requirement for discipline. Nor, I believe, the need to be interesting and challenging too. I’m considering a venue to trial my improvisational process: a chapel or a church.

1.40 pm: After lunch, I drifted like disembodied spirit from one exhibition area to another, making myself generally available for advice and helping hand:

For some, this is the first time that they’ve encountered a bradawl, spirit level, mirror plate, and mount. These are tools and means that they’ll be using to set up their first home. (Transferable skills, as they say.)

3.45 pm: Up the hill to meet with Mr Ruddock (who is setting up his PhD Fine Art show at the Arts Centre) and several eminent bore-sample scientists and their offspring, who were attempting to extract a 500,000 year old mud sample from a plastic sheath to prepare one of the works. Witticisms about constipation were the only things that flowed:

7.30 pm: I’m still working at 50% efficiency. Back to my reports and other assessments. Nothing like as much fun. Just keep typing and the words will trip-off the keyboard. In the background, some post-Cream Jack Bruce to ease the body, mind, and spirit. He was an exemplary upright-bass player. 9.20 pm: A profound tiredness in my arms forced me to take cover.

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