MIT Visual Arts Program announces

low-frequency vibration:
a conference, workshop and dance party

Sponsored by:
Center for Advanced Visual Studies
265 Massachusetts Avenue, N52-390

Conference: Friday, April 24 10AM-5PM
Workshop: Saturday, April 25 10AM-5PM
Dance Party: Saturday, April 25, 8-10PM  

A specially-built raised floor at MIT’s Center for Advanced Visual Studies will be activated with low-frequency vibrations. During the conference, the floor will be used as a platform on which to hold a dialog (in speech and sign) between artists, designers, scientists and students. During the workshop, the floor will be used as an instrument for acoustic experiments in resonant vibrations. At the dance party, the floor will become a stage for performances and dancing.

Waves and Signs was initiated by Wendy Jacob with students and faculty from MIT and Gallaudet University. Gallaudet is the world’s only university in which all programs and services are specifically designed to accommodate deaf and hard of hearing students. Wendy Jacob is a Visual Arts Program lecturer, Director of the Autisim Studio, and a fellow at the Center for Advanced Visual Studies (CAVS).

All events are held at
CAVS, 265 Massachusetts Avenue, N52-390, Cambridge, MA 02139. Events are free and open to the public, however the workshop is limited to 10 participants (to reserve, email email hidden; JavaScript is required).

For more information:
Meg Rotzel, Center for Advanced Visual Studies
617-253-4415 or email hidden; JavaScript is required


Signers and Speakers
Friday, April 24, 10–12, 2–5PM

Conference moderated by Wendy Jacob, artist, VAP lecturer, and CAVS fellow.

A dialog (in speech and sign) between artists, designers, scientists, students, speakers, and signers.  Participants will touch on the range of human experience including deafness, and on acoustical engineering, especially resonance and sonic vibrations. All presentations will be interpreted in American Sign Language.

Signers and speakers (partial list):
Charlotte M. Reed, Research Laboratory of Electronics, MIT, Understanding Speech through the Skin:  An Overview of Research on Natural and Artificial Methods of Tactual Communication
Sheila Patek, Integrative Biology, University of California, Berkeley, Rumbling shrimp and rasping lobsters: vibration in the sea
Kelly Dobson, artist, Center for Advanced Visual Studies, MIT, Resonating with Machines
Hansel Bauman, architect, Gallaudet University, Deaf Architecture: The Resonance of Place and the Senses
Michael Chorost, writer, A Resonance of the Senses: The Surprising Connections Between Deafness, Implanted Computers, and Touch

Full presenter list:,734

WORKSHOP: Saturday

Resonance Workshop
Saturday, April 25, 10-12:00, 2-5:00PM

Led by Jackie Lee, PhD candidate, Media Arts and Sciences, MIT
In a one-day workshop participants will work in pairs – one hearing and one deaf – to create acoustic experiments as a form of communication. Each participant will use physical objects, computational tools, sensors and actuators to invite another’s resonance. The resulting compositions will be performed publicly on Saturday evening. The workshop is limited to ten participants.


Dance Party
Saturday, April 25 8-10PM

A floor will be activated with low-frequency vibrations and will be used as a site for performances and dancing. By sitting, standing, dancing on the floor, visitors will be able to experience sound through their bodies.

Performers include:
DJ Pandai’a, of BASSIC
Jessica Rylan, Center for Advanced Visual Studies, MIT
Andrew Colwell, throat-singer
Eric Gunther, electronic musician
With sound by Damion Romero, Nikolas Francis, and Resonance Workshop participants


The Center for Advanced Visual Studies is located adjacent to the MIT Museum at 265 Massachusetts Avenue in Cambridge. Enter through the grey door on Front Street and take the elevator to the third floor.

By Public Transportation
Take the Red Line to Central Square. Walk four blocks along Massachusetts Avenue towards Boston and the Charles River or take the #1 bus to the Front Street stop.


MIT Council for the Arts
Office of the Chancellor, MIT
Hansel Bauman
Bilal Ghalib
Jin Won Jung
Frederick Kim
Jackie Lee
Matthew Mazzotta
Ted Moallem
Jack Murphy
Jessica Rylan
Robert Sirvage
Ian Smith
Jessica Wheelock