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The Geography

An Endless, Non-linear Orchestration

In order to display the duality of
The Geography
how something endless becomes something finite
by recording moments from an endless source
into arbitrarily measured segments,
fragments, moments, songs, ideas,
conversations, translations, meals,
snacks, vessels, pockets, dances, whispers, concepts:

"Black and white
Wooden floor boards
The smell of the rain"
- Geographer Ernst Grucken

"There were strings of cloth flags, and under each one a kind of elf-like creature holding baskets of chocolate cicadas."
- Geographer Oenthol Gritch

"It was strawberry season and I still couldn't get her off my mind. The orchard tickets. The altercation at the mining conference. The beach covered in pink mist."
- Geographer Rolm Sumner

"After we were separated at the swamp exhibit, she caught me looking for her by the pile of red sand. I caught her looking for me near the sealed-behind-glass copy of Casabella Magazine."
- Geographer Utem Roome

"I asked the Sherrif if they had heard about the accident at Sunflower Mill. The Sheriff just looked at me and smiled, and then they said,

"it is a beautiful day, and that is all that I know."

I left them with a basket of blue corn husks and my hiking permit."
- Geographer Basilicata Joheptãs

"On my second stay, I looked out of my apartment window. I was in a totally different part of the city. But just like last time, there was a flickering light in an outdoor stairwell of the apartment block just down the way. An ominous sort of flicker, uneven, erratic, an intentional malfunction, somewhat human. I have come to the conclusion and am quite convinced that a very polite spirit is following me, and is very interested in my presence in it's city. If I stare too long at the light,

I start to feel like I'm intruding on something."
- Geographer Enio Montgrapa Vilafrento Bogrula de Upi

"It was a delicacy. The cook, who I eventually came to know by name, prepared the dish every night for locals and tourists alike. I would pass him nightly on my way back from the dig site, and every night he would smile, almost preemptively. It was as if he had a mirror somewhere pointed at the street from an impossible angle. As soon as I came into sight he would lift his head, smile and nod. His name was Rolm Sumner, a retired Geographer. Very famous, but perhaps not in the east."
- Geographer Etna Tottiyk

"Take a long walk somewhere to where the air is thin, exhaust yourself, breathe deeply and with high frequency. Nature and altitude have a way of cleansing the circus of a complex thought."
- Geographer Unaio Osazu

"If it wasn't for Erol Beechum, there would be no Ernst Grucken, and without the both of them, there would never have been cause to build the suspension bridge between Kakoshima and Tenji City. For geographers, the pass through the mountain range, and the surveying techniques that came from it's construction, defined modern geography for many of us."
- Geographer Mandy Osha Beechum-Redberry

"She lived in Nara, in Japan, and smoked American cigarettes. Lucky Strikes. She wore a perfume made from white and pink plum blossoms, a scent custom crafted by Izåbël Töūrilöú. She never did approve of the happenings within the inner circle of the league of geographers, and she was right to protest. To erase a mountain and a valley from official maps was a crime, and she made the culprits known.

She brought them to justice."
- Geographer Rolm Sumner.

"The tenants in 503 got back late most nights, after about 1am. The ladies in 401 smoke in their room, even though they're not supposed to. It always smells like smoke in the hall just outside their door. The woman in 404 has a small child. A baby. I hear it cry sometimes but I don't mind. Sometimes the elevator is already moving when I walk up to it, and when it opens on my floor, it's always empty."
- Geographer Enio Montgrapa Vilafrento Bogrula de Upi

"As soon as I came into sight, every person along the market street turned and locked their gazes onto me. My presence was clearly felt immediately. People sorting vegetables two blocks down, frozen in place. Eyes wide, right on mine. Everyone. I kept walking. I had to. I had Beechum's maps in my briefcase. For a little while, I was sure someone was tailing me, but I lost them at the subway station."
- Geographer Utem Roome

"I followed the cat from the river, past the gallery and up into the high rise building with all the restaurants. The cat's name was Mister Microwave and he was Izåbël Töūrilöú's cat. I would recongnise that attitude from the moon. What was concerning was that Izåbël Töūrilöú had been missing for months, and Mister Microwave was supposed to be in New Mexico."
- Geographer Etna Tottiyk

"The foreman wouldn't give me a straight answer. Kept mumbling something about being over-worked and under paid. So I asked the Sheriff if he had any idea where the two detectives went. He just smiled that same smile and said; "We feel many things in this life, and one should never be ashamed for feeling. It is a most important thing to trust yourself with the feelings that you have, and let them be felt, fully." The Sheriff had been bedazzled by something. But even when I snuck into the mill, there wasn't a stray seed to be found. Everything was running like clockwork."
- Geographer Basilicata Joheptãs

"It's remarkable how something strange on a quiet night can really make your mind unravel in the strangest ways. For me, it was the girl on the park swing, just around midnight. She was knitting a scarf and when our eyes met, she looked at me with such offended fury, it was as if I, a complete stranger,

had just walked into her living room."
- Geographer Ernst Grucken

"She would describe her dreams to me, say, something like 'it started to rain one day and it never stopped. The rain filled everything, until the mountains grew coral.' Her dreams would feel like they were months long, she would say. She would have visions of great gusts of wind bringing colourful waves of flower petals cascading through the dunes of red sanded deserts."
- Geographer Rolm Sumner

"I caught a glimpse of legs disappearing into the canopy of a tree. At first I wasn't sure, but a few stray leaves fell to the ground from the darkness in the branches, the slightest sound of rustling, and a feint crunch, like soft celery between teeth beckoned me. So I walked closer and looking up I saw, there amongst the canopy, five businessmen-looking types crouched among the branches. They looked just as surprised as I did."
- Geographer Oenthol Gritch

"They really only wanted Beechum, so, eventually, they just let the rest of us go. But things were already pretty strange for us before then. Waking up in different beds to the ones we had fallen asleep in, walking into one building and out another, somewhere half way across the world. It was hard to tell if someone was following you down a street, or it was just your shadow being spontaneous."
- Geographer Utem Roome

"There was a tree at the top of the mountain and Osazu said it was called 'The World's Eyelash.' When I questioned her in a "The World's Eyelash?!" kind of way, she simply said "Well, they've got to be somewhere, don't they?""
- Geographer Enio Montgrapa Vilafrento Bogrula de Upi

"Laughter in the night isn't like laughter during the day. Light creates a field of noise, especially when it's from the sun. Laughter at night is clear as a visible face; you can hear a genuine laugh as if it were a genuine face wearing a genuine smile staring right at you."
- Geographer Unaio Osazu

"She found a quiet place to live. A pin drop heard for miles sort of place, and people could be found walking, or riding their bikes, well into the witching hours. It is calm, and it is tranquil. But most of all, it is very safe. "Everywhere you don't look is somewhere it might be!" She would say. It was a kind of mantra, and was useful when you had lost your keys or your field journal or something."
- Geographer Rolm Sumner

"When you're a geographer, the kind of geographer that I am, that we all were, your attachment to things gets all mixed up. Every flickering light I saw was somehow like a friendly face. A good piece of art was a hearty meal.

A mountain was a song, a river; a film reel."
- Geographer Rolm Sumner

"Töūrilöú was never officially a geographer. She was an artist, a gallery owner, a perfumer, lion tamer, a master of antiques and rarities, and a fine cartographer,

but never officially a geographer by the office's standards."
- Geographer Etna Tottiyk

"The day Sumner and Osazu were supposed to meet, the lines got crossed. A miscommunication. Osazu ended up on a hospital roof holding a white armadillo. Sumner was at the coast, standing in a tide pool holding a mallard duck. Our entire reality was just the result of an impression of another reality, clearer still that a line drafted on one map affected the line of another, and vice versa."
- Geographer Enio Montgrapa Vilafrento Bogrula de Upi

"As far as I am aware, the incident at Sunflower Mill has nothing to do with the geographers. They're not connected. Well, they're about as connected as everything is connected to everything else, but not directly, not as far as I know."
- Geographer Basilicata Joheptãs

"There were rules. Arbitrary things. Like how we weren't allowed to travel by rail, nor leave the city we were currently stationed in at the time. No speaking with people with olive coloured eyes. Only take walks in the moonlight. Eating only green foods. Drinking only clear liquids."
- Geographer Oenthol Gritch

"The sounds of the words change every time they are spoken. If you listen in a certain way as I tell a story of the place, it can sometimes sound like a song."
- Geographer Unaio Osazu

"A brisk evening.
Freshly fallen snow.
Coffee breath, cigar smell on a comfy coat.
A fuzzy flannel lapel. Warm bed sheets.

A feeling of connection.
A crate of autumnal vegetables.
A feeling of love.
A feeling of gratitude.
A belly full of rice."
- Geographer Ernst Grucken

The Geography by Michael Berto

powered by a secret piece of programming

and hypothetical proto-artificial intelligence
which is a collaboration 
between Michael Berto and Titouan Millet

The Geography's current musical compartments are composed by
Paws Menu and t e l e p a t h 

The Geography is currently in residency at

The Geography is an endless, non-linear, musical landscape; once instantiated, it will weave a continuum of new musical tapestries, creating an unique aural experience from moment to moment. For the duration of the resident, The Geography will stream for 24 hours a day from a local instance. During this time, The Geography will be all in one a live performance, an installation, and a seamless autonomous improvisational visual and musical composition.

Endless, non-linear music as a concept is at the heart of The Geography, and is an engagement with listenable music that is never the same, and will never repeat, and one that will play forever. A kind of programmable live spontaneity integration with the concept of ‘playback’. The Geography is an actualisation, after many years of research and experimentation, to realise the idea in an observable, displayable and listenable way. The Geography is an exploration of endlessness, in a harmonious and ambient context.

Light is the visual dancer in The Geography. Light and how it behaves and travels over geographical terrain data is what visual powers the installation, and is a dichotomy of the aural concept; the infinite made from tangible pieces. The Geography is a meditation on the infinite, when given a structure in which to observe something that is building into the infinite, infinitely, with the finite. In the interest of abstraction and re-contextualisation, each day of the residency, a thirty-second snippet of The Geography will be recorded live and uploaded to Instagram. To demonstrate how a song can be distilled from The Geography, which itself is an un-ending song. A unique part from a whole of parts. The Geography is an exploration of terrains; terrains of The Geography, terrains of sound, terrains of introspection, terrains of meditation, terrains of terrains. The Geography is an example of The New Music. The Geography is visual and musical, featuring an endless and non-linear evolving musical idea made of musical ideas. The Geography's visual data is taken from real world geographical data, an example of the natural gifts, and all that rest upon it. A natural marvel that should be an ambition to protect.

The Geography is inspired by and built upon the foundational and fundemental concepts and philosophies of creation of

Brian Eno, Brie Code, 

Dr Mick Grierson and Gwilym Gold.

The Geography is in residency with isthisit?
02-02-2020 - 29-02-2020

follow The Geography's arbitrary portions

collected daily by fictional geographers


The Geography: A Philosophy of The New Music
by Michael Berto.

Music is moving away.

Artists will continue to make music and their desire to share will only grow, the more the avenues become less for music to be heard in its new contextual paradigm. So then, music is moving away from the single state, and towards a return to an unbroken continuum of sound. Today, you might say, “I like this record, it's my favourite record.” That’s what you might say today. 

However, in the future, you may find that your favourite record, or rather, the favourite thing that you like to listen to, has no name, and has no timecode. You may then say something like “I enjoyed what I heard yesterday afternoon, at about 4pm until about 6:15pm in the evening.” and your friend might say “Oh really, and what did it sound like?” and you might say “It sounded a bit like this” and your friend would say “how interesting, I had never heard it sound like that before.”

There is no title for your favourite song, because what you are listening to is not a song, it is something else. Something more. Something endless. Definitively, such a thing can not be a song, but arbitrarily measured, perhaps song-like. The New Music may still be the output of your favourite composer or musician, but it doesn't exist on its own, between A and B, but rather exists between A and all the letters and numbers and combinations of all the letters and numbers, and only ‘ends’ when you stop listening to it.

Such is the interesting future of music. Then consider what it means to the marketplace of music. As technology evolves and music technology evolves and compositional technology evolves, it will create and is creating a new kind of music. The act of creating need not have an end point, never a tape to cut, wind, replicate and ship away, but rather embracing the current and future technology to formulate a kind of music distilled from an artists loom of sensibilities.

And so, The New Music brings together the creative aspect, the recorded aspect, the live aspect, and the experimental aspect, the improvisational nature of music, to the listener, wherever they are, in one contained form. 

You may hear familiar moments during The New Music, a motif, that returns and reappears along the infinite road, but some days it will be raining, somedays you will be in a desert, other days, perhaps a lush rainforest and a jazz standard.

Parameters, in the classical sense of music composition, can be supposed as the tuning of an instrument, the levels on an amplifier, the mix, and so on. Parameters of The New Music are more custom, more unique to the artist. Classical composition informs the New composition, and are largely the same, except that the process now has more layers, more avenues in which to compose the music and the way the music can continue to freely evolve. The act of making music does not end when the album is complete, because the album never ends, and is never the same from minute to minute. The layers of creation go beyond the sound, and into how the sound behaves, and the feeling of potential sounds, potential sonic baths. These layers create The New Music, create a piece of music that can not be considered a piece of music, but an eternal music. Eternal for as long as it is listened to, and without a listener, still will it play.

The Geography is considered in a new kind of genre for video games; Passive. The Geography is a Passive Game. Passive games are games with no interaction, games that will exist without input. A game that is a window. A game that is a film. A game that is virtually crafted. Arguably, computer animated films are passive games. Highly complex versions, but passive, none-the-less. The Geography, as a Passive Game, may not be recognisable as a game in its native state, but almost all aspects of its production mirror a video games production, down to the vessel of its creation; The Unity Game Engine. The only difference is interaction, as there is no interaction, no input available for the player. Thus, The Geography is not a ‘game’ as any definition would lead you to believe, but rather, simply a game in the cultural definition defined mostly by it's production and presentation. The Geography itself is primarily a vessel to experience The New Music, and a visual is not intrinsic to The New Music, but is paired harmoniously.

The Geography can be everybody and everything in-between. The framework for The Geography, and what powers The Geography, is one of infinite potential. One hundred artists could give The Geography ideas to weave into endlessness, or just one can.

The Geography uses geographic data from real-world location rendered into low-poly landscapes brought to life with graphical shaders. The Geography is an electronic orchestration that plays forever, always re-organising itself, always changing and creating ambient sound baths. The Geography is digital light as an artist of emergent motion. The Geography is light as an abstract of itself, its behavior when abstracted from the high fidelity of light's behaviours in waking earthly reality. The Geography is powered by known and secret programming and is a form of The New Music, or, if you will, Music 2.0.

2020. Michael Berto. All Rights Reserved.

the air is charged with electricity, fog makes the lights like doorways, the darkness is filled with unbroken whiteness, the stars are so bright they are together great cracks in the sky, great permeant gentle lightning, peaks of great stellar mountain ranges. i remember you in the sun softly smiling, or rather trying to smile, a little like sea legs but for the light

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