Couple Transforms Sex Acts into Live Music with Motion-Based Sensors
Listen to the soundtrack here.
A sound artist from Japan has created a real-time sex soundtrack by wearing motion sensors during intercourse and feeding the results into a synthesizer.
Rory Viner programmed each sensor to trigger a specific note, playing the sounds aloud in real time so he and his partner could hear them during their moments of intimacy.
You can listen to the aural representation of Viner’s sex acts here:
To achieve his goal, Viner attached piezoelectric sensors around his and his partner’s waists and limbs.
The sensors linked into a microcontroller that triggered the notes within open-source interactive electronics software Arduino.
The Arduino program (called a sketch) sent out the notes as Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) data and into the synthesizer.
Viner wanted to help couples feel more intimate by tapping into the desire to record personal data, according to a post on his blog.
He described the experiment as creating “a feedback loop” because he and his partner could control what they were hearing by changing their actions, while at the same time using the sounds as sexual inspiration.
He said it was “editing our actions in real time to change our behavior in order to change the musical output.”
“I…thought that this feedback loop would create a greater sympatico or feelings of connectedness.”
Intimacy or interference?
Perhaps unsurprisingly, Viner’s initial experiment was more awkward than arousing.
He confessed the results “were not as predicted” and created a “depersonalized effect.”
“Rather than collapsing distance, in fact, this created a distance that interfered with the emotional immediacy of the event,” he said.
However, even though it didn’t work as a sex aid, Viner’s idea still has the potential to record and define sexual activity.
It’s also an alternative, organic way of creating music.
Motherboard senior editor Brian Merchant described the musical result as “a bit more delineated and polished than, say, a porn soundtrack.”
“Personally, I find it melancholic and beautiful,” he added.
Viner said he wanted to “explore the increasing desire to log data about ourselves and what this means to the positioning or co-ordinating of self as extended through sonic feedback and music technologies.”
“The corporeal self is constantly being self-monitored and other-monitored as our technological self extends.”
“As the intimate becomes public, how does the emotional distance change?”
A classically-trained musician, Viner made headlines in 2014 after using a synthesizer to create music based on Japan’s suicide statistics.
His sex soundtrack has received more than 40,000 hits on Soundcloud.
Images source: Rory Viner