variant:SONiC is an audiovisual artwork that creates beautiful, ever-changing music and imagery. The app combines user input and built-in randomness to create images and music that will continually change, grow and evolve, offering a new and different experience every time. For users of all ages, variant:SONiC is a chance to explore and experience a unique work of generative art.
variant:SONiC was commissioned by the American Composers Orchestra for the 2015 SONiC Festival. The musical composition is built entirely from individual notes played by different participants in the festival, including:
- Andy Akiho
- Alarm Will Sound (Miles Brown, Michael Clayville, Erin Lesser, Courtney Orlando, Jason Price)
- Clarice Assad
- Christopher Cerrone
- The Crossing
- Melody Eötvös
- Angelica Negron
- Nieuw Amsterdams Peil (Gerard Bouwhuis, Heleen Hulst)
- Nina C. Young
To interact with variant:SONiC, tap the screen; each tap will trigger a randomly selected fragment of the musical composition, as well as a visual element that responds to it. You can steer the visuals by dragging after tapping, and you can trigger up to 10 sounds at one time. To repeat a sound, keep your finger held down and that sound will loop. By using some fingers to loop sounds and others to trigger individual elements, you can build up complex combinations of sound and visuals.
You can view the indeterminate audio engine by tapping the dot in the lower right. The display shows the different elements of the musical composition as they are loaded by the engine through a combination of chance and user input. The center button opens a menu of settings for the app, and the button to the right allows you to take screenshots of the visuals, automatically saving them to your photo library.
The Variant apps are a new series of generative audiovisual artworks from Interval Studios featuring visuals by Joshue Ott and music by Kenneth Kirschner. Each Variant features a unique visual composition by Ott based on his superDraw visual performance software, as well as a new indeterminate musical composition by Kirschner. Each Variant app also offers a different set of interactive controls for the user, ranging from the ability to subtly influence the development of the piece to total interactive control over both visuals and sound. All of the Variants are generative artworks: through a varying combination of built-in randomness and user input, each Variant will continually grow and evolve over time without ever directly repeating itself either visually or musically, offering the user an ever-changing, ever-evolving audiovisual experience.
variant: SONIC on the app store (free)
variant: blue on the app store (not free)
variant: flare on the app store (also not free)