mp3(abode) (2000)

A sound-based project led and coordinated by Loftus involving a range of participants from around the world. A call was sent out across the web, inviting people to send an MP3 file of their favorite or most hated bite of sound. These sounds then inhabit an old upright piano located in the basement of the Arthouse building. Visitors to the building will be able to play this collection of emotions from around the world and these "recitals" will be broadcast into people's daily lives via the Internet and a radio band.

Full Description

The object of this work was to capture emotions from across the globe as mp3 sound, a call was sent across the web inviting people to send their thoughts/feelings as an MP3 file, the resulting work has both a physical and virtual presence.

The sounds (accompanied by time, place and emotion) were collected via e- mail and involve 80 artists including pieces by, Marjetica portc, Loftus, Daniel Figgis and Ward Weis. Subject matter is irrelevant insofar as it's in the ear of the beholder.

A 120 year old piano in a basement in Dublin creates constant new soundsculpture through interaction with the public, the computer interface is replaced by sampling keyboard disguised to blend into it's new host. Each note triggers an mp3, each mixing of these sounds creates a different soundsculpture dependant on which artists the user interacts with and the force, timing and grouping with which the notes are struck.

The speakers are placed in such a way that the sounds travel above, below and all around the person playing, to give the feeling of movement from place to place.

The sounds vary from pieces deliberately written for abode to bites of life and death such as a children's choir caught in an earthquake in ljubljana 1963, a 70's pinball machine in N.Y. or the Dutch nazi youth call to arms.

Each sample is accompanied by it's time, place and emotion which were printed and left like sheet music on top of the piano. The inclusion of these three definitions gave a better insight to the overall thoughts and feelings behind each piece.

The web is not evident as the technical end is hidden so as to make the experience more personal, just sitting in a candlelit room playing and mixing feelings from randomly selected lives. Pieces of spontaneous work and samples can be played and listened to from the website.

An interview with Loftus and a soundsculpture from the piece may be found at

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