The Reverse Color Organ (RCO), 2016
Colored metal tags, plastic ties, downloadable web-based app
May 3, 2016 – May 31, 2016
Ellen Hackl Fagan is collaborating with cognitive scientist Michael Cole and programmer Joshie Fishbein to develop The Reverse Color Organ (RCO), which will interact with the on-site installation at Marcus Garvey Park. This synaesthetic tool will expand the language of color, and will double as a crowd-sourced musical instrument. Once they download the app on their phone, visitors choose from a spectrum of colors on their screen that they would like to pair with sounds. When they select a color it is enlarged and highlighted on their phone screen. By moving their finger on the color screen, they will hear a range of sounds. When they come to the sound that best expresses the color, with a double click, they can lock in their choice of color/sound pairing and submit their choices to the Reverse Color Organ website. This site will collect the data from all participants and will constantly update the information.
Physical Installation: Along a long length of fencing leading up to the Acropolis visitors will arrive at the Reverse Color Organ, an installation of colored metal plates fastened to the fencing. Using the App, visitors can read the colors with their phone’s built in camera and hear the sound pairings most often selected by others who have played The Reverse Color Organ. They will hear the collective language of the sounds of colors, as crowd sourced by the attendees of the FLUX Fair and can make comparisons to their own color pairings.
The Reverse Color Organ (RCO), start to play! www.reversecolororgan.com
Interdisciplinary abstract painter, Ellen Hackl Fagan uses synaesthesia, digital media, and interactive performance as tools for developing a corresponding language between color and sound in her work. In 2003, Ellen Hackl Fagan created The Reverse Color Organ (RCO) with composer Michael Feldman, and premiered it at Hartt School of Music in Hartford, Connecticut. This project enabled viewers to interact aurally with color and surface through Max/MSP and Michael’s unique sonic palette. Now, in collaboration with cognitive scientist Michael Cole and artist/programmer Joshie Fishbein, the Reverse Color Organ is being developed into web based program that will place this synaesthetic tool into peoples’ hands. As a community based creative toy, the RCO can be utilized, not only to expand the language of color, but also as a crowd-sourced musical instrument. www.reversecolororgan.com
Fagan earned a Master of Fine Arts Degree in Painting and Interdisciplinary Media in 2005 from Hartford Art School in Hartford, Connecticut. She was awarded a RADIUS artist residency through the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, in 2004, as well as a grant through the Stamford Museum & Nature Center in 2005. Fagan exhibits her work extensively throughout New England and New York City. In June of 2014, she expanded her independent curatorial practice into a full time business and is now the owner of ODETTA, a gallery in Bushwick, Brooklyn. There, she maintains her painting studio and has become an active member of the NYC arts community. ODETTA is bringing three terrific artists to the FLUX Art Fair in an exhibition titled Cast and Formed. Linda Cunningham, Susan Stair, and Kurt Steger have created new works that express their empathic response to Nature in the urban environment.