Wearable Instrument: Octav

2019, Fall

Octav is a bodysuit equipped with gesture sensitive technologies designed to be an electronic musical instrument that responds to the choreographic movements of performers and compose music.

The goal of this project is to create an innovative tool for musical performance. We tried to explore an unconventional form of acoustic performance that is closely tied to the human body and bridge the virtual analog signal and the human body as an interface.

Collabration With Owen Wang

︎Exhibition Concept

The project initiated with the idea of creating an external MIDI controller to collect analog data and have them delivered and processed through Arduino and PureData to generate sound. As we kept exploring the relationship between the human body and musical performance, the idea of generating sound directly from body movement presents an opportunity for reinventing live musical performance.

As designers, we understood performance to be a representation of a series of dynamic actions and emotional reflections. With the aid of the bodysuit, we want the performance to reflect the body gestures of the performer and at the same time, to have the performers respond to the music with their intention of composing and taking control of the stage. In the context of post-human philosophy, we want to start a discussion on body-technology relationships and inspire the audience to look into the interaction between the vocal avatar of the performer and the performer and their inherent relationship.

Materials and Methods:
The technology involved in the fabrication is mainly based on the conductive thread sewing technique and the adoption of rubber cord stretch sensors. The pattern is designed to maximize the stretchability of certain parts of the fabric to provide the most eligible data. the choices of fabrics, which varies in stretchability, alone with the special sewing technique allows the sensor to function efficiently without restricting the movement of the performer.

︎PureData GUI interface in use

︎Soft Goods Design

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