The main idea of this project consists in proposing to the spectator to enter into a living organism, called “Mendel.” Entering this space, the spectators discover a group of “units,” considered as Mendel’s “organs.” The goal being to communicate with Mendel, the spectators have the possibility to act upon these “units” ; their actions are then analyzed by Mendel which can react in two different ways : Instantly producing a sound result and storing useful data for his apprenticeship and his evolution in time.
In a more concrete way, the units are constituted, either by captors (which detect the movements and the sounds made by the public), or by information terminals (which can be reached by the public through different means). All the actions made generate a flow of data analyzed by the system and producing a sound landscape perpetually moving.
Through this exhibition, three fundamental aims can be found: To create an innovative sound environment, nearly autonomous and reactive To create an interaction with the public through several zones of exchanges To consider this project as the realization of a living organism (hence the name “Mendel,” from the father of genetics : Gregor Mendel).
In this space, the spectator is thus in presence of a “sound entity” and he must try to establish a “dialogue” with it ; the music produced being the concrete result of this exchange.
Mendel, in its basic function of interactive exhibition, addresses itself to a wide range of public. Its aim, musical as well as scientific, playful as well as upsetting, should arouse everybody’s curiosity. It can also be an extraordinary pedagogic tool for all pupils. Human beings permanently live in a continuous sound flow : whether in shops, public places or at home ; they often are in a “polluting” sound environment. The constant presence of this standardized “uproar” in every day life, tends, in the long term, to deaden the “ears’ ” curiosity and to assimilate the sound phenomenon to a “consumption.”
One of the aims of the exhibition is thus to give again to a sound environment its uniqueness, its mystery and to provoke, from the spectator’s part, a feeling of curiosity and pleasure in listening: there are some uses more fundamental of sounds than that of a commercial message; we don’t discuss the fact that seeing an extraordinary landscape, we must discover again the beauty of the sound landscape. In our time of numerous communication networks, this project tries to raise an essential question through a musical, and initiation path : how to communicate ?