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New grants awarded Upstream: Music x Design

08 october 2019

In the second round of the Upstream: Music x Design grant programme, projects by one-man band Spinvis and techno producer Albert van Abbe received grants. The grant programme focuses on innovative applications of design and technology in pop music. An advisory committee with representatives from both the design field and the pop sector considered all the proposals and managed to keep the selection just within the available budget. The next possibility for submitting an application is 23 October 2019 at the latest. The budget available for this round is € 115,000.

grants awarded
Spinvis in collaboration with International Silence
'Alles Is' is a live electronic music performance by Erik de Jong (Spinvis) and Saartje van Camp in combination with an AR app developed by the designer duo International Silence, Twan Janssen and Johannes Verwoerd. The musicians and makers are examining the current role of digital media in our lives and the way in which digital technology can actually create more connections with each other. While the musicians play and rotate on a circular stage, the AR app allows the audience to see a cloud of texts and images merging around the stage. The music, texts and images will reinforce and question each other during the performance. In autumn 2020, the performance can be seen in various museums and at festivals. Other partners are Ruud op den Kelder (creative software developer), Esther Lutgendorff (production), Excelsior Recordings, Mojo Concerts and Hans Klik.

Johannes Verwoerd had this to say about the project:
'Unlike a regular concert, the AR and live music keep to the same script, complementing and questioning each other in a tension curve that you would expect to see in the theatre rather than on a concert stage. It's an intimate performance using an app about the things in life there isn't an app for.'

Albert van Abbe in collaboration with Ricky van Broekhoven
Sound designer Ricky van Broekhoven and techno producer/musician Albert van Abbe are developing a hybrid musical instrument called 'PhasingWaves', which combines kinetic light sculptures with electronic sounds. The installation consists of a flexible string, at least five metres long, which displays magical spatial forms and patterns through light. By controlling the speed at which the installation moves, synthetic sounds are created. The team is also developing an interface to operate the instrument and to create an interactive live performance with the audience. Van Broekhoven and Van Abbe together with Innovation Space and TU Eindhoven. In addition, industrial designer/researcher Mathias Funk, mechanical engineers from the European Prototyping Centre and audio engineers from the Willem Twee pop venue are also involved in this project.

Ricky van Broekhoven said about the collaboration:
'We noticed that we could join forces very effectively in an iteration of a project that I recently developed with the TU/e. I couldn't explore the musical potential of this installation because I lacked the skills to do so. However, Albert did have the necessary expertise. In addition, our teaming up offers an opportunity to work with parties that have their specializations, such as the Willem Twee studios and E.P.C. This allows us to transcend ourselves.'

the advisory committee's impression
The advisory committee chaired by Jeroen van Erp, consisting of Arjo Klingens, Brian Elstak, Eva van Netten and Klasien van de Zandschulp, is very satisfied with the quality of the selection. Despite the fact that the number of proposals submitted was rather limited, the round had a diversity of project forms and applying parties. The committee's selection also demonstrates the broad spectrum of the grant programme. In both projects, music and design come together in a special, artistic way, creating a new experience and visualization of music and performance.
For the next deadline (23 October 2019), the committee is once again interested in projects in which an interesting application or crossover with technology, design or visual culture is sought. Ideas and concepts can always be discussed by telephone or e-mail with the team behind the Upstream: Music x Design grant programme: Sean Gilis and Ibrahim Alaoui Chrifi.

Upstream: Music x Design
With Upstream: Music x Design, the Creative Industries Fund NL, together with the Performing Arts Fund NL and Sena, supports innovative artistic formats and collaborations within Dutch pop/urban music. The Upstream: Music x Design grant programme is run by the Creative Industries Fund NL and is intended for projects in which artists work together with designers and makers on new applications of design, visual culture and technology within music. With the help of Upstream, the Funds and Sena aim to broaden and strengthen the music industry in the Netherlands, to come across more strongly internationally and to stimulate crossovers into other disciplines. The annual budget is made available in three application rounds.