History of Design [ IM ] – Soundscape of Body

Soundscape of Body (大音希聲) was a recent performance created for the 2018 Body Donation Day by the Body Donation Program of the University of Hong Kong. It was choreographed specially to introduce the audience to “life and death education” while provoking thoughts about the value and meaning of life and our body.

The performance works by scanning the body using low energy lasers, then translating the readings into music and lights. It was designed to bring a new perspective to how perceive the body, transforming flesh to soundscape; it reflects the body’s nature and relationship with our life.

“The largest square has no corners. The greatest vessel takes the longest to finish. Great music has the faintest notes. The great form is without shape.”
Tao Te Ching, chapter 41

Keith Lam talks about natural raw building blocks (hair and skin etc) and uniqueness of each body – different shapes and sizes. The form are like “mountain ranges and coastlines”, thus a landscape which can also be read as a musical score. The concept makes this performance is very similar to John Cage’s Variation V as it used the same idea of the human body as the subject to produce sounds and projection.


Performance Process

The audience are first introduced to a body as the dancers enter the scene, wandering among them, wearing only bodyline.

When the dancers lie down on the bed, the lights turned off followed by the start of the audio and visual projection.

The bodies are scanned twice each to generate the music and visuals one by one. They start with subtle movements “with the idea of exploration” before making bigger movements beneath the scanner; starting with the fetus position signalling the start of a new life.

Different speed and volume of movement generate different layers and rhythm of audio and visual. The musician (people that control the system) and dancers coordinate to allow wider gestures such as sitting up.

As the end approaches, the performance reaches its peak and becomes more intense. The strong and fast change in movements leads to more layers that are louder and stronger before a diminuendo to calm and peaceful movements.


You may watch the video here -> http://dimensionplus.co/sob/gallery/20180304/154459/ 


At last, the dancers rises from the bed after the music fades out, turning to watch their own body soundscape.

After the performers leave the stage, a voice over leads the audience to feedback and rethink about our own body with expressive arts self exploration process and to think about life.


The ending script is as follows:

Life creates stories,
and our bodies contain all these chapters,
none of our bodies are the same,
every life is unique …
And now…I’d like to invite you to notice your breath,
with an appreciating heart,
notice the rhythm of your heartbeat and your pulse
listen to the message from each and every single part of your body,
(1 min)
and now… (House light fades in)
in your house program, there is a sheet with the outline of a body,
if that was your body,
what kind of picture/landscape would you draw in this body?
(5 mins)
Life is precious,
For sure our bodies are worthy,
and even when we reach the end of our lives,
our bodies are still precious.



This performance is quite a lengthy one, about half an hour. A very slow burn process to immerse the audience into a ‘meditative’ state where they can tap into their own existence. The ending script uses phrases similar to “you are breathing manually” to awaken your conscious awareness of your body functions that are usually natural and done without your control.

You are now breathing manually meme



Soundscape of Body 大音希聲


History of Design [ IM ] – Keith Lam

Keith Lam, 林欣傑, a New Media Artist from Hong Kong.

As a new media artist, can you create without electricity? I think the question raised in the video is worth pondering. In the video he talked about stepping outside your comfort zone and searching for new approaches. If you cannot create outside of your field, then it is your creative process that needs to be reviewed. The materials should not be a burden.

He is interested in the boundaries between technology and art and is very open to integrating ideas from different disciplines, forming ‘mutant’ projects as well as cultivating the T-shape designer instinct in his students.

He explains his preference for tangibility when being asked “So you Prefer Something more tactile in your art?” in an interview. Stating that physical form adds a different aspect to an artwork, “something direct, real, and perhaps a formal way of communicating with our audience”. There is a disconnection between the content for VR and its usage. He says VR is uneccessary unless you want to create an experience that cannot be created in real life. In his opinion, “virtual reality should be used out of the of necessity in creating un-real things”.

As New media refers to the means of mass communication using digital technologies such as the Internet, Keith Lam associates with the label as he plays with the interaction between user and modern technology.


PRIX Ars Electronica, Japan Media Arts Festival and Young Artist of Hong Kong Arts Development Awards, selected as “40 under 40′′ of Global Creative Talent by Perspective Magazine.


Invited Festivals:

Ars Electronica Festival, FILE, ISEA, New Technological Art Award, 404 Festival, Split Film Festival, Microwave International New Media Arts Festival and Hong Kong Arts Biennale, around the world at Austria, Belgium, Brazil, UK, The Netherlands, Italy, Japan, Argentina and Taipei, etc.



External Examiner of Hong Kong Design Institute, Visiting Associate Professor of Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts, Art Director and consultant of Shenzhen New Media Arts Festival. He taught at the School of Creative Media of City University of Hong Kong, Visiting Lecturer of Hong Kong Art School, Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts, School of Design of The Hong Kong Polytechnic University and Hong Kong University, University of Hong Kong and Chinese University of Hong Kong. International Jury of GDC.

Dimension Plus

He founded Dimension Plus, a New Media Creative Studio, in 2009 with Escher Tsai. Their works revolves around New media spaces and cross-discipline interactive design; experimenting with new ways to enhance the communication and experience between the product and user.

“In the digital era, we still believe the sense of existence while we are living in the real world. By mixing-and-matching of Digital-Physical, we transfer the invisible and digital into a tangible and visible texture, creating works with combination of digital and analog, linking the digital and physical from two heterogeneous dimensions.”

Dimension Plus is recognized worldwide as they are often exhibit in expos and art festivals etc in various of cities and countries including Italy, Austria, Japan, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Taiwan, etc.

They have also earned multiple awards all over the world including Gold Award of DFAA2013 (Design For Asia Award 2013) and Asia Digital Art Award 2012 at Japan, etc.

LAB by Dimension Plus

Under Dimension Plus, there is the Maker Space LAB and common room & co. (a collaborative cultural space that consists of a makerspace of LAB by Dimension Plus and an independent bookstore, Book B). These spaces allows the community of creatives to gather, share and exchange ideas; connecting people from various kind of discipline for more organic discussions.

common room & co.