Performance by Christopher Bauder & Robert Henke [2007]


Atom is quite simple: 64 helium filled balloons can be independently moved up and down via a computer controlled cable winch. Each balloon also contains a bright white LED, allowing to illuminate it from within. The balloons are arranged in a 8 x 8 grid, turning it into a spatial, warped ultra low-res LED pixel matrix. The LEDs and movements are controlled in sync with music.


The audiovisual sculpture allows to produce a surprisingly wide range of geometric shapes and illuminated patterns, which are explored in nine distinct pieces or movements.

The performance is improvised based on pre-defined patterns. These patterns control musical events and associated visual shapes. In some pieces, there is a one-to-one relationship between musical notes and associated balloons/LEDs, in others a single musical event triggers a geometric pattern comprised of several LEDs / balloons.


In some other cases there is a complex visual figure running independently and only their global movement properties are synced to sonic events.

The Atom 'object' itself has been designed by Christopher Bauder and his team at whiteVoid. The visual patterns and the music are from myself.

During the performance, Christopher is controlling the movement of the balloons, I control the music and LEDs.


In 2008 the music for the performance has been reworked and made into a CD and vinyl album release:


atom atom atom atom atom atom atom atom atom


Balloon motion control during performance: Christopher Bauder. Music, sound design, LED patterns, LED pattern control software and performance by Robert Henke. Winch control software and hardware engineered by Christopher Bauder, Till Beckmann and Holger Pecht at whiteVoid.

Photos by Justine Lera, taken at TESLA-Berlin, September 15 2007 and at Centre Pompidou, Paris, April 4 2008.