INPULSOS: Music and technology in its most innovative state for connectivity and interaction between people, places, sounds and culture

Do you believe that combining music and technology is going to become a permanent trend? This was the topic of inPULSOS, organised and co-produced Artshare, held in the scope of S2S – S+T+ARTS Towards Sustainability in partnership with Guarda2027 – Bid of Guarda’s municipality to European Capital of Culture 2027. inPULSOS brought to the audience a spectacular interaction between musicians in different places, interconnected by sound waves in real time. A combination of technology and music in its most innovative state: creativity and connectivity to provide the interaction between people, places, sounds and cultures.

However, before going further on inPULSOS, it is important to briefly speak about the S+T+ARTS Towards Sustainability [S2S] project. Created to implement a European network of S+T+ARTS Regional Centres, S2S is a pilot project which aims to contribute to the creation of European Digital Innovation Hubs, promoting networking and seeding activities in the regions of Northern and Central Portugal; Namur, in Belgium; Île de France, in France; Piedmont, in Italy; the South-Western region of Bulgaria and in Estonia. S2S is developed by the consortium formed by the institutions: Serralves Foundation, Artshare, KIKK, 104, Fiminco Foundation, Nesta Italia, Digital National Alliance and STARTS.EE, at Tallinn University.

In this sense, inPULSOS took place on October 6th, 2021, in three locations in Beira Interior, Portugal – Seia, Fundão and Guarda. In convergence with the purpose of S2S, inPULSOS had the goal of positively influencing the modernization of the music industry, with the adoption of emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, 5G, among others.

The concept of inPULSOS originated from the concept of synapse, which was also applied in the context of Guarda2027’s ECOC bid. It sought to challenge the intelligence and creativity of the population. The concept of inPULSOS is that it sought to stimulate and connect the cultural agents and the population through the use of various cultural stimuli, like a “cultural nervous system”. The event unfolded in creation and interpretation poles, or “neurons”, whose real time relationship and interaction resulted in a visual performance, where music was is the cultural impulse.

Sara Jorge, General Manager & Communication at Artshare’s, participated intensively in the organisation of inPULSOS and was present at the event. In light of the organisation, Sara highlights: “Through an intergenerational and eclectic language, inPULSOS combined simultaneous music performances with a visual experience to connect the city of Guarda to the region and, in turn, to the country.“

Throughout the event, various musical performances were broadcasted to various local radios, and the visual artist was able to create visual pieces using the input provided by the musicians. Through the use of local radios, it was possible to create a live performance that strengthened the relationship between the contemporary and the traditional. The goal of inPULSOS was to promote the fusion of the two artistic languages and build a more cohesive social fabric.

Sara complements: “The different dynamics on which the activity focused allowed anyone, of any age and in different places of the region or the country, to be connected and/or present in a whole; and, finally, it allowed to raise the awareness of the local, regional and even national population to the physical, natural and cultural heritage that exists in the region of Beira Interior.”

In a long-term approach, inPULSOS was designed to enable a more transversal and cultural door for the city and its surrounding regions. It also sought to raise awareness of the various creative and territorial wealth such as local, national and international talent; creating space for the development of new artistic languages; highlighting the potential of culturally disadvantaged territories in relation to major urban centres.

inPULSOS presented three simultaneous performances of the work “The Construction of Time” by Vitor Joaquim. These performances were held in two concerts with the artists Vitor Joaquim, João Silva, Ulrich Mitzlaff and André Heencleday. In addition, Alba Corral performed a live visual performance at the Teatro Municipal da Guarda, where she used the outputs of the two concerts as inspiration for the real-time visual creation.

Aside from the live performances, the event also featured a Round Table – “Transdisciplinarity for a culturally integrated society” – that explored the potential impacts of technology on the development and production of artistic technologies, such as the recording and transmission of musical content in real time, potential applications and impacts of these results on society, namely in the territory of Beira Interior, in Portugal. The roundtable brought together the School of Arts of the Portuguese Catholic University – Porto, Guarda 2027 and media artist Alba Corral.

The activities associated with inPULSOS were disseminated through the various digital platforms of S+T+ARTS and Guarda2027, reaching a wider regional and international audience.

The event was conceptualised by Maria João Silva, Sara Jorge, Daniel Swann with the support of Luis Miguel Girão and Luis Teixeira. The co-producer for the event was our friend and media expert, Patrícia Delgado.

Do music and technology together have the potential to make music experience more accessible and innovative?

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