Insect Rhythmic Union - Vibroscape of Hochmoor Gais (Vibratory Installation, 2023)

Vibratory insect signals, 12 body shakers, hut, meadow

"Insect Rhythmic Union" is a vibratory installation rendering perceptible the vibrational communication among insects in a meadow. Grounded in the emerging science of biotremology, the project investigates the unique „vibroscape“ of the local ecosystem of a wet meadow in the Swiss Alps. Over several days, vibrational signals by insects were recorded with an array of six laser Doppler vibrometers. This recording material of 150 hours was then edited and distilled into a coherent composition.

The installation is equipped with 12 body speakers, mounted beneath the hut to make the wooden floor and walls transmit vibrations, each emitting unique insect signals. For the laying or sitting visitors, this setup simulates the experience of being in the midst of the meadow, surrounded by the vibrational communications among its insect population. The vibratory playback signals mix with the audible soundscape in front of the visitors.

"Insect Rhythmic Union" leverages the insights from biotremology to bridge the gap between human perception and the microscopic interactions occurring in natural habitats. By converting these vibrational signals into a format that can be felt and heard through the vibrating structure of the hut, the installation enables visitors to experience the complexity of insect communication and its role in the ecosystem in a corporeal way.

Realized at the Festival Klang Moor Schopfe, Gais, Switzerland 2023
Installation in collaboration with Juan José López Díez (National Institute of Biology, Slovenia)
All recordings made on site by Juan José López Díez
Editing and composition by Ludwig Berger
Photos by Juan José López Díez, Johannes Berger, Cathy van Eck and Ludwig Berger

Improvised concert-lecture by Juan José López Díez (scientific explanations) and Ludwig Berger (insect recording set)