Emergence is the story of natural laws and processes, their inherent beauty, and their action to yield the universe, us and the world we live in.
I started working on the project around 3 years ago, when I was thinking about how I could link my interests in science, music and visual arts together. The theme was one already touched on in previous music video projects, and one that provided potential to incorporate many different ideas and audio-visual experiments into a single narrative, so I got stuck in to see where the project would take me. The result was initially a live AV show, which then turned into an album, and for the final piece to close the project, a surround sound film format.
The story is told using a universe timeline, from pre-big bang to future, with each chapter a collaboration with a different visual artist, including some collaborations with mathematicians or scientists for those chapters using real data visualisation. As such, there is a huge range in visual styles, and for each different idea and piece of music I had in mind, it was a matter of finding the right visual artist and approach to try and tell that part of the story. My aim with this approach was to have plenty of variation to make what is an often abstract narrative, interesting, and also a hope that the over-arching story links the different visual styles together.
We made a companion site to outline the narrative of the Emergence show with information on the ideas involved in each section and chapter, as well as a summary of the visual and audio content, and credits and links for the many collaborators who took part in the project.
The Emergence project is not supposed to be a rigorous scientific presentation of ideas, the project is my own interpretation of the modern scientific story, told through visual art and music, with a focus on those ideas that I find most interesting and revealing.
It’s been an absolute pleasure working with all the amazing visual artists and musicians involved, and all the better because I’ve been able to learn a lot of interesting things, and delve into ideas that I find exciting as part of a music project. This approach has encouraged me to create a new label called Mesh, focused on music which is part of bigger arts and science projects such as this.
If you would like to take a deeper look into my Emergence project we made an interactive companion guide at emergence.maxcooper.net - I hope you find some things in there which you enjoy.
Stream/Buy Emergence here.