Pop! Bang! Wallop! – TROVE’s 3rd Birthday Party

TROVE, whom I recently did an exhibition with, will be celebrating its third birthday on 12th October 2012 5-9pm. To celebrate this occasion they’ve invited past artists and collaborators to exhibit some work with them

TROVE's 3rd Birthday

Over the past three years TROVE have worked with 146 local, national and international artists that have created, exhibited and performed as part of TROVE’s programme.

TROVE have realised over 36 shows in the wonderful TROVE home, the Old Science Museum, and in offsite projects, with venues including Curzon Street Station, mac birmingham, Edible Eastside, DownStairs Gallery, FarGo, The Burlington Fine Art Club, Coexist and ARC.

TROVE is an independent art gallery who have worked with Fierce Festival, Hereford Photography Festival, Hedge Enquiry, Minnie Weisz Studio, Museum of Lost Heritage, Birmingham Architects Association, Birmingham City Council, Clarke Gallery, Birmingham City University and Crowd 6.

At Pop! Bang! Wallop! there will be presents, piñatas and pass the parcel! There will be artworks and cards from past TROVE artists! There will be a bouncy castle! And much much more!

Come and celebrate TROVE’s 3rd Birthday on 12th October 2012 5-9pm.

TROVE, Newhall Square, off 144 Newhall Street, Birmingham, B3 1RY

To celebrate the occasion, in addition to making/glitch a birthday card, I circuit bent a toy for them:

A present for TROVE

I received this toy as a present from the micro residency that I did in 2011 at Fargo Hack Play Space. Although it’s really small, this toy contains a lot of bits to bend and break! The toy originally played several nursery rhymes, contained a single-purpose light and had its own speaker and headphone port.

A present for TROVE

Using great science a lot of guesswork I added in a light-dependant resistor to control the speed of playback, repurposed the light switch to reset the device and made the light only turn on when noise is being made. Pressing and holding the play and skip button causes the speed of playback to double (or triple). I also replaced the sticker on the front with some of my own art. The below video probably explains it a lot better than words ever could:

(If pictures are worth 1000 words then the above video is worth 2095000 words)

TROVE call out for toys

In June 2012 I’ll be co-curating an exhibition about toys at/with TROVE and Daniel Salisbury. More info, including how to get involved, is below:

Toy Box at TROVE

Image by Daniel Salisbury

TROVE is an independent art space in Birmingham, UK, which run a monthly changing programme of contemporary art exhibitions/events.

In June 2012 TROVE are hosting an exhibition about toys. This project leads on from the discovery that the Jewellery Quarter, Birmingham, where TROVE is based, used to produce more ‘toys’ than jewellery, guns or pens; all things it is now more famously known for producing. When researching what toys were produced in this area of Birmingham it was discovered that the term ‘toys’ was used to describe items such as buttons, cuff-links and belt buckles.

Calling all hackers and Circuit-benders

With the misinterpretation of the word ‘toys’ TROVE are looking for actual toys, as is the current understanding of the word, that have been altered, hacked, modified or electronically changed, rather than ‘toys’ meaning belt buckles, buttons etc.

Sound like something for you? Email me with your hacked creations (antonio@hellocatfood.com) and include:

  • your CV and a short personal statement
  • a short description of the work/toys
  • links to online footage of the toy is available
  • max 6 photographs of the toy/s you are proposing

The deadline for submissions is 6th May 2012

Notes for application:

  • please make sure you can deliver and collect your toys from TROVE (map); 11th/12th June for drop off and 24th June for collection.
  • If the toys require power, only applications where toys are battery powered will be accepted

This exhibition is also looking for films about toys to show. More info on that is here.

Happy hacking!

Circuit Bending at Fargo Hack Play Space

On Sunday 27th November I did a one-day micro-residency at Fargo Hack Play Space in Coventry. I was asked to bring unfinished projects, completed projects or something completely new that I wanted to start on. I have a fair bit of Pure Data and Processing code and ideas that need(ed) a lot of attention but I had serious doubts of whether they could be completed in six hours.

To say I had absolutely no idea what I was going to achieve in one day would be quite an understatement.

Fargo Hack Play Space

In the end I took along my laptop, the unfinshed audio cable hack, an Arduino, and the Vtech Learning Alphabet Classroom Toy toy that I had previously bought for a fizzPOP Circuit Bending Hack Session:

My previous attempts to hack it back then were largely unsuccessful. I was able to cut out the audio completely and break the toy on several occasions, but what I was after was a way to control or glitch the audio and LCD screen.

Fargo Hack Play Space

Part of my problem was that there were very few components to play around with. Aside from the buttons themselves all I had was a circuit board that had very tiny components.

Thankfully, with the help of Dom and Ashley I was able to locate the resistors and attach a potentiometer. Results varied throughout the day, but I was able to get it producing something out of the ordinary!

But then it borked.

Regardless, it’s progress! I’ll be continuing work on it soon, and may even try hooking up the buttons to an Arduino or my computer to trigger other things.

Thanks to Dom and Ashley for inviting me down there for the day, and for the pizza 🙂