Murat Ali Cengiz
Pauluskerk Project, Automata
Our first musical experiment as Automata took place in Rotterdam, Pauluskerk. I chose this building as a source of interest for two reasons:
• Being a very unusual building for its function (church)
• Though looking chaotic, consisting of very basic shapes (triangles)
I started by making sketches and notes at the building site. What spoke to me most were the structure of triangles joining in asymmetrical angles, coming together to form a polygon mesh. For me this was the essence of the being of its design. The small triangle windows mimicking a gothic rose window above the entrance and the nets where the bell is placed caught my attention as well.
The main problem of making a musicographic based on a building or an object without motion is that they have no motion, they’re timeless. Since the minimum of creating a musicographic is laying down a timeline, how do you make a timeline for an object that has no obvious time?
Deconstruction was my tool when I worked on the graphic score of Pauluskerk, what I did in musicographic of Pauluskerk was to get this polygon mesh made out of triangles as if it’s a toy I can hold in my hand and open it up like pealing an orange. The score moves on like the building is designed, made up of regular triangles repeated in an irregular fashion.
At the centre of the musicographic the rose windows appear, the bell sitting in its black spot. The latter part of the musicographic is representing the more ordinary looking part of the building on the east side, triangles fading into the rectangular shapes used there.
For this experiment my goal was to make a musicographic intended for improvisation. I have worked with four musicians, including myself, Giuseppe Doronzo (Baritone Saxophone), Erdoğan Cem Evin (guitar), Adnan Dura (alto Saxophone) and gave them the following instructions:
• This graphic score is based on Pauluskerk, Rotterdam
• The main idea are the triangles repeating in irregular ways
• You have to make a build-up towards the bell in the middle
• What you do at the bell is up to you but it has to standout.
• In the end you start to lose the shapes of the triangles as they transform into rectangles and fade away.
• The improvisation has to be 90 seconds.
One of the interesting results of this experiment was that, even though this musicographic was made for improvisation, with the given information, the musicians had to compose and prepare a significant amount of time before being able to deliver an improvised performance. Here you can listen to mine and Giuseppe Doronzo’s interpretation of the score combined together*. It is important to note that we have made our individual recordings without listening to each other.