I made the vitbrotactile soundtrack for Maria Fernanda Cardoso‘s work initially for a gallery space, so it was quite a challenge transforming the idea into a format that would work as a three channel video, outdoor experience.
The spiders courtship dance is visually stunning, but it is the vibrations that they produce, which are the most spectacular aspect fo the ritual. The spiders are the size of a pin head, so the initial sound recording was done using a laser vibrometer, capable of capturing the minute vibrations made by the spiders. I used these barely audible sounds to re-create the sounds and vibrations in the studio using a variety of techniques. The resulting soundtrack was a combination of foley I recording with expert foley artist Blair Slater, and synthesised sounds designed to recreate the specific vibrational language used by the courting spiders.
Three round stages reproduce the sounds and tactile vibrations which were largely felt through the audience’s feet as they stood or sat on the floors. The audience were convinced that they were actually hearing and feeling the sounds made by the spiders, and not the hyperreal, vibrotactile soundtrack.