Champlain Sound and Color - Burlington VT - Paris
Champlain Sound and Color. Pictured here is the color stream projected at La Bellevilloise gallery in Paris, France. The stream was live from the ECHO Center in Burlington VT.



Artists: Jenn Karson, Matt Larson

When and Where

In April 2010 CiTu labs of the University of Paris held the first synchronized international event for The Art Collider. In Vermont, sound artist Jenn Karson and photographer Matt Larson participated from ECHO Lake Aquarium and Science Center in Burlington, Vermont. They contributed live sound and video streams from the Burlington Waterfront using max/MSP.

The Art Collider is an online platform that supports a collaborative creation of media art through a system of Peer-to-Peer and Artist-to-Artist production.

Sites in the Paris, Montreal, San Francisco, New York & Linz participated in the event.


Lake Champlain is a place of global history and natural beauty. Its cultural communities have included
the native Abnaki, early French & British settlers. Presently Burlington is a place of
Asian and African refugee resettlement programs. Traffic from Burlington’s international airport is a dominant element of the Lake’s soundscape. Accompanying its cultural communities are its natural communities. Spring in Vermont is always a dynamic season, a combination of snowfall and snow melt, mud and ice, rain, sleet, sun and frost. It is a time when people and the animals who made their way south for the winter, return. Currently, the weather in the area is more turbulent than usual as the northeast region of the United States is experiencing record flooding and temperatures.

Sound and Color: Exploring Time and Place on the Lake Champlain Waterfront is an exploration of
these natures and cultures that are the Lake Champlain Waterfront.

The Streams

Champlain Sound Stream


NEW ORLEANS CITY SOUNDSCAPE, 2010. This image was created from midi data used to create SOUNDING THE STREETS OF NEW ORLEANS




When and Where

DuMois Gallery, New Orleans
November 11 – December 3, 2010
Opening Reception: Friday, November 19
Image: New Orleans City Soundscape, 2010.


Fragments of song float from street corners and weave throughout
the open-air bars and restaurants that line Bourbon Street. For the
passerby, pieces of numerous songs are threaded into one melody.
Time signature is determined by the walker’s gate, notes by the chance
encounters with the sound events of the place, points on a map. 

On December 31st, 2004 I walked through the French Quarter and down Bourbon Street recording the experience described above. Music, the sounds of busy streets and celebrations all became part of the recording. Using midi conversion, I translated the original eldrecording into digital data. The data now works as a master score, open to diverse interpretations.

In 2010 I’ve worked with this score to create the sound piece SCORING THE STREETS OF NEW ORLEANS and the image NEW ORLEANS CITY SOUNDSCAPE.



Learn how E-textiles are an accessible and fun introduction into the world of electronics

Come to Champlain Mini Maker Faire to stitch with conductive thread and make Champ, The Lake Champlain Sea Monster, light up!


You’ve probably heard me talk about my enthusiasm for Champlain Mini Maker Faire , coming right up on September 29, 2012. This event will bring together innovators of all ages in engineering, science and the arts. Today I want to share my excitement about a particular maker who is coming to the Faire:  Beverly Ball, a teacher from Denver Academy in Denver, Colorado who will show visitors how E-textiles are an accessible and fun introduction into the world of electronics.

Want to try working with conductive thread? At Bev’s booth you’ll get to help sew a huge LED glowing CHAMP, The Lake Champlain Sea Monster!

Below are descriptions of her booth and workshop, designed for all those curious! See you there!

11:00 am– 11:30 am | Maker Stage

This pictures’n’talk presentation is for teachers, craftspeople, artists, and hobbyists who want to combine hands-on arts and crafts skills with emerging digital technology. Learn what E-textiles are, how to get started, and why they’re such an accessible and fun introduction into the world of electronics. See examples of some of the ways to incorporate embedded computation into your own projects, from simply decorating a hat with LEDs to using shape-shifting wire to add kinetic elements into otherwise static objects.

Booth #32

See for yourself how soft circuits work at this hands-on/demo booth. Stitch LEDs and batteries together with conductive thread to see just how delicate and flexible electronics can be. All ages welcome.  We’re building Champ! – The Lake Champlain Monster.

Also demonstrating soft circuits at Champlain Mini Maker Faire is Soft Circuit Saturdays from neighboring New Hampshire!

10,000 Year Clock

10,000 clock concept by Eddie Sottto
10,000 Year Clock concept by Eddie Sottto

We are huge fans of The Long Now foundation‘s 10,000 Year Clock. The Long Now Foundation as an organization “hopes to provide a counterpoint to today’s accelerating culture and help make long-term thinking more common.” This is the idea behind the 10,000 Year Clock, as it will keep time for 10,000 years and therefor provide some girth (time and place) for the concept of long-term thinking. Naturally, it’s taking a really long time to build it (the project started in 1989). Those of us who are interested in long-term thinking really enjoy the process and gradual unfolding of the endeavor – watching its measured, smart and steady progress.

The project began with an observation and idea by computer scientist Daniel Hillis :

“When I was a child, people used to talk about what would happen by the year 02000. For the next thirty years they kept talking about what would happen by the year 02000, and now no one mentions a future date at all. The future has been shrinking by one year per year for my entire life. I think it is time for us to start a long-term project that gets people thinking past the mental barrier of an ever-shortening future. I would like to propose a large (think Stonehenge) mechanical clock, powered by seasonal temperature changes. It ticks once a year, bongs once a century, and the cuckoo comes out every millennium.”

Here’s a recent update:

Clock One – Raise Bore from The Long Now Foundation on Vimeo.

More information is available here:

The Long Now Foundation also hosts a very thought provoking seminar series in San Francisco. If you become a member, you get access to live  audio broadcasts, no matter where you are.  We are members of The Long Now and encourage you to join to! The more of us exploring long-term thinking, the better.

*All quotations in this post were taken from

Salon Pod

Salon Pod traveled to indoor and outdoor locations in Vermont. Participants seated in its chair chose from a menu of soundscape options. Once choosing their soundscape it was played, just for them, through the Salon Pod sound system.


Salon Pod


Ken Mills

When and Where:

Salon Pod traveled to cafés and small venues in Central and Northern Vermont in 2006. It was part of the South End Art Hop in 2005 and 2006.

The Experience:

“I forgot to tell y’all that I checked out the Salon Pod over the weekend at The Langdon Street Cafe in Montpelier. Maybe you’ve seen the short items I’ve written about the Pod in Weekend in recent months. Maybe you haven’t. Anyway, the gist is that Burlington musician Jenn Karson (formerly of local riot-grrrl band Zola Turn) converted an old-school hair-salon chair into a listening station for her ambient music. She pumps her music through small speakers installed in the spaceman-styled hair dryer – one of the most brilliant musical-equipment ideas I’ve ever seen – and gives dark goggles to the listener to block out as much sensory interference as possible. I selected a musical number called “Le Coiffeur,” which was appropriate considering the setting (and I needed a haircut, anyway, and a virtual one seemed so much easier and cheaper). It was a pretty freaky experience, lemme tell ya, but very cool. The blend of impressionistic synth-driven music and snippets of cutting scissors and French-speaking barbers was a first for me, frankly. I’ll be writing about it more at length for an upcoming article in the Free Press, so keep your eyes and ears open.“- Brent Hallenbeck, Burlington Free Press


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