"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on unrassonable man." (George B. Shaw)

Argentine Sergio Avello is part of a new trend of artists who conceive art work in interaction with the environment. Bringing together light, sound, technology, concept, public places, society, and new media, they generate an artistic and social happening (Art in Situ, Site Specific Art, Environmental Art, Public Art, Art in Public Places, Architectural Intervention). These new forms of art are also endorsing the move towards intelligent cities.
On the invitation of MALBA - Colección Constantini, Avello created his 7 - meter - high piece Volumen, a giant urban vumeter, in operation since December 2006 in the open air on the Museum's esplanade.

Inspired in the city of Buenos Aires, Volumen is an aesthetic indicator of ambient sound, wich translates audio data into light, in real time. It indicates the intensity of the sound it captures, with colored light, making the invisible visible:
Green indicates normal. acceptable sound. Well-being. The possibility of moving forward.
Yellow indicates tolerable, intense sound. A call to attention. A warning.
Red indicates loud, unpleasant sound. It bothers. It encourages reducing the intensity.

"Predicting the future is easy. What is difficult is to know what is happening now."

Volumen is instant environmental information; a marker of environmental quality standards, indispensable to preserve our biological capital.
Light and sound are internal sensations stimulated by environmental vibration. When a body is knocked or rubbed, the molecules that conform it move rapidly, i. e., they vibrate, and these vibrations, transmitted through the air, reach the ear in sound waves that propagate, producing successive condensation and rarefaction of the air itself in a straight line (sound ray).
The World Health Organization (WHO) considers 50 decibels (dB) as the desirable ceiling, sounds exceeding 70 dB are unpleasant, and if they go beyond 90 dB they become harmful. A standard conversation is 30 dB. According to the WHO, Buenos Aires is the noisiest city in Latin America, though since 2004, the city has passed legislation to control sound pollution.

"Do not leave for tomorrow what yesterday you left for today."

It is human beings who are responsible for environmental pollution, who only think of our own importance as "encapsulated" individuals and of our inmediate circle. Self-centeredness is not self-love; it comes from an inner void that need to be constantly filled. Self-centered behavior turns a deaf ear to his contaminating effects: carbon dioxide emissions, strident sounds and visual effects, all types of waste, even toxic and in large quantities.
Quality life depends on our decisions, decisions depend on knowledge, and knowledge depends on perception. Intellectual capital.
It is important understand the tolerance limits of our health, understand that loud sounds and noises harm, our auditory cells, irritete and tense our state of mind, causing unpleasant states which depreciate our emotional capital.

"If you don't know where you are going, you will probably end somewhere else." (Laurence J. Peter)

The most important thing to anyone is how that person feels, and we always want to feel good. Even thoughts affects us because they create feelings. According to Macedonio Fernandez, to be is to feel. Therefore, either we improve the general conditions or we will become ever more insensitive. Insensitivity that ward off pain also numbs enjoyment. And let's not forget that sensitivity also warns us of any danger. If we choose not to feel, we are depriving ourselves of being.

"The conscience is like an unspecific immunological reply. There is no evolutionary limit that indicates how much conscience a species may acquire. And there is no end to the degree of advantage of adaptation that the gaining of conscience may confer on an individual or the species." (Terence McKenna)

Persons or things do not exist without an environment. We all share biological, family, social, economic, and cultural systems.
We integrate and are responsible parties in the interactive network of life, and each one may act one's own level -without making excuses for the lack of activity or negligence of others- encouraging and increasing what is good. Social identity is an element of an individual identity, Identity is a self-concept, an imaginary representation, determined and changeable of something deep and immeasurable: it is creative freedom.
Creativity is there at all times and in every place seeking to manifest itself.
Sergio Avello's Volumen may be considered a work of art of international scale, and as such, it is defined in is excellence of form, in a love for creativity and the beauty of life itself.

Erika Escoda

This text can be copied and be distributed whenever it is mentioned the author.

More references of the text:
The impact in the ear: photos of auditory cells
Administrations in Network: humorous phrases
Model of Five Capitals
Terence McKenna

Correctors: Vera Capilla / Facundo Sanchez


_ Similar and simultaneous work: "Volume", in a Museum of London. _

It causes to me astonishment to know that a work ' Volume ' exists in London, similar and exhibited in simultaneity with "Volumen" of Avello:

is an installation formed by vertical columns of light and sound, aligned in the center of the garden, that interact with the human movement on having walked between his columns, creating a series of audio-visual experiences.

Volume can be contemplated in the gardens of “Victory and Albert Museum” of London. This piece is a collaboration between the designers' group United Visual Artists (UVA), Robert Del Naja (aka 3D) of Massive Attack and Neil Davidge (part of his company of musical production “ one point six ”).

This project is a part of the collection “PlayStation Season" a series of events of interactive art promoted by Sony.
From November 24 until January 28, 2007. Free entry.

Links to more information: VIDEO / Volume and United Visual Artists / Robert Del Naja / Massive Attack / Victory and Albert Museum / Volume / PlayStation Season / Pixelsumo / GráficaColectiva / coffe please

In the right column of this blog, it arrives, there is a link to an automatic translator of texts and/or of web pages who can facilitate the reading.
We followed it, can write a commentary clicking in “comentarios”.

_ Post-opening _

Of now in more, already inaugurated, we will see how "Volumen" interacts with the environment. It will be in functions, somewhere here, until September, 2007.

At first, chatting with Sergio (Avello, the author), we notice that the young people are who more understands and appreciates the work. Also there are critics of art that good comments and foreign journalists have made they have been interested in writing notes.

On the other hand, any innovative slow work in being included; many people, even inside the world of the art, tend to classify the innovations inside old schemes, they it is difficult to open to the new conceptions of reality that an artist can propose.

The new generations, the scientific advances, the technological development, the social interactions, the economy of the information, the shared knowledge and enormous quantity of things are producing many changes to global scale. The people of different disciplines exchange information on this matter and they are interested in coordinating contexts The people of different disciplines exchange information on this matter and they are interested in coordinating contexts and references so that we all could face ourselves towards the best possibilities.

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_ Opening of "Volume" _

On Thursday, the 7th of December it inaugurated the work, which will be in the Raised area of the museum until September, 2007. It was one very agreeable evening; for the climate and for the people, the vernissage spread until evening.


Only for this day, the sound sensor was manipulated so that it could appreciate the most aesthetic and dynamic aspect of the lights of color. To the sensor it is possible to give him direction to different points of the ambience to take the sound and to translate it to light.

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_ Post-installation, pre-opening _


_ Installation of the work _




_ Pre-volume, pre-installation _