Radio Mycelium 2018+

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A mycelial network has no organs to move the world, no hands; but higher animals with manipulative abilities can become partners with the star knowledge within me and if they act in good faith, return both themselves and their humble mushroom teacher to the million worlds all citizens of our starswarm are heir to.

Terence McKenna, The Mushroom Speaks

Radio Mycelium is a modular Mycelial Radio Research Platform (MRRP) conceived for workshops and installed as part of the Mycelium Network Society installation and performance/activation within Taipeh Biennale 2018.

Seventeen participants will form an inter-species, human-mycelial radio performance network, activating the molecular Mycelium Network Society installation and instantiating an active mycelial/mushroom audio networked circuit.

Within the mushroom molecule structure seventeen transmission devices are pre-installed which operate according to local mycelial conditions and transmit small-scale material change information across wide-band radio frequencies. These devices will interface with local humidity, temperature and radio signals within the growing mycelial bodies, sometimes creating rich signals, sometimes blocking or jamming signals within a very close space, parasitically riding on local space electromagnetic emissions.

Prior to the performance, seventeen sound artists will take part in an open workshop building DIY radio receivers and sculptural antennae, testing the reception of signals and interfacing with open examples of the Lingzhi growing mushroom. Throughout the workshop a fungal dramaturgy will be developed for the opening performance, comprising acts which are dominated by certain received sets of signals.

During the performance, the seventeen artists will work with spatially defined radio signals, and moving radio receivers within the constraints of an eight channel sound system which allows for precise localisation of sound signals. Artists will also play with their own approaches to handheld Lingzhi fungi which will serve as audio and full spectrum instruments. The performance is a collaboration between electronic sensibilities and the extra human realms of radio frequency and Lingzhi.

Radio Mycelium was first initiated as an open investigation and workshop at foam, Brussels as part of PARN (Physical and Alternate Reality Narratives) in 2011 and further elaborated in Ghent (Borrowed Scenery) in 2012 with Nik, Maja and many others. A further workshop took place in Edinburgh in 2014 with Laura Yuile.

With thanks to Maja Kuzmanovic, Nik Gaffney and all at foam, Shu Lea Cheang, Franz Xaver, Taro.

Further images

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Schematics, construction, notes and software

References and links

Author: root

Created: 2018-08-23 Thu 22:16

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