Ove Holmqvist is a sound designer, independent researcher and conceptual artist studying new forms of expression and listening experiences through participatory works, real-time complex adaptive systems and generative concepts.
In his recent work with biomusic, Holmqvist has created a form of audiovisual bio-art that explores inferred mental states from biosignals and attempts to imagine tomorrows popular music in doing so. Holmqvist eschews brainwave measurements in favour of other biophysical reactions in a decidedly behaviourist approach.
Holmqvist's performances are site-specific, contextually adaptive, interactive sound environments for multiple participants that study biofeedback through the interplay between biosignals and biomechanics. The biomusic performances question the current pursuit of control and the hegemony of the ocular by using movement and biosignals to generate the sound synthesis, while completely omitting visual music control interfaces in favour of passive, non-volitional operation. Paradoxically, relinquishing control results in greater expression.
Prevailing views on how music should sound and be experienced, such as the concepts of author-audience and linear composition, are challenged. Through the diffusion of roles of listener and performer, Holmqvist has largely ejected ideas of authorship and composition in favour of the abandon of improvisation.
Through the performances, concepts such as entrainment, dueting and chorusing can be explored in an intuitive way, while the biophysical feedback loops of the performers provide a coherent visual element along with body-controlled lighting and stage effects.
The performances include elements like shared instrumentation, collective parameters and topographic control, which situates the event in the chosen setting. This is a step towards holarchic form in music.
Ove Holmqvist is one of the founders of biomusic.cc, a group that sonifies human biosignals and movements. They are currently creating a contextually aware music app for sonification of everyday activities.
Holmqvist is based in Barcelona and Helsinki. He can be reached at +358-45-111 0379 or email@example.com