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  • M&A Courtyard 1619 Silver Lake Blvd Los Angeles, CA, 90026 United States (map)

DOMUS is experimental anti-seismic architecture incorporating spatialised seismic sound and light that challenges our response to and perception of earthquakes.

DOMUS is an experiential, anti-seismic architecture installation that challenges our perception and response to earthquakes in Los Angeles. The project exhibited at Materials & Applications (M&A) in its outdoor exhibition courtyard and was open free of charge to the public from 10am – 10pm every day of the year. DOMUS is constructed from a low-cost open hardware Hexayurt shelter system designed by Vinay Gupta that is heavily utilized in Black Rock City during the annual Burning Man Festival. DOMUS is constructed from THERMAX (CI) insulation panels and bi-directional filament tape, a temporary construction technique durable up to 12 months. As with all M&A installations, this two story high extended Hexayurt design was constructed with a team of volunteers.

Suspended in the center of DOMUS is a matrix of undulating lights and sounds that pulse, retreat, tremble, and vibrate in response to two curated seismic databases, creating a stunning visual and aural immersive experience. DOMUS submerges visitors into the sensorial datascape of two historical events: Haiti’s 7.0 earthquake on January 12, 2010 and the 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch on Feburary 21, 2011. The LED chandelier centerpiece suspends from an 18’ tall ceiling as the structural ribs taper into eight points, suggestive of gothic arches. Compositions performed in DOMUS are created by Ryan McGee in collaboration with D.V. Rogers, and use seismic recordings to translate waveform data to the compositional data collected by IRIS Wilbur. Visitors are encouraged to spend a minimum of eight minutes to fully experience the meditative space of immersive sound and light exploring interpretive seismic vibrations.

Utilizing spatial audio design, the interior of DOMUS makes audible real-time global seismic waveform data broadcasting Sounds of Seismic (SOS) internally within the space. The SOS spatial muzak system creates continuous and autonomous streaming audio compositions transposing the frequency, depth, location and energy release of natural and man-made seismic events within the interior of the house. To experience the interior of DOMUS, you not only hear seismic muzak, you feel the low frequency bass of continuous seismic resonance throughout the house as a ‘beautiful’ spatial seismic sound composition.

Haiti Earthquake Mw7.0 12th January *02010 This Haiti Earthquake composition is created by Ryan McGee in collaboration with D.V. Rogers using seismic recordings of the 12th January, 2010 Mw7.0 Haiti event based of waveform data recordings from the closest 12 stations. The data used in making this composition was collected from IRIS Wilbur.

 Christchurch Earthquake Mw6.3 21st Feb *02011
This Christchurch Earthquake composition is created by Ryan McGee in collaboration with D.V. Rogers and uses a single seismic recording from the closest station from seismic waveform data made public via IRIS Wilbur…yrad=Q1_2011///all


DOMUS Project Team: D.V. RogersRene ChristenRyan McGeeStock PlumDallas Winspear

Special Thanks: DOMUS is made possible by the Australia Council for the Arts Emerging and Experimental Arts Board, the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, and the LA County Arts Commission. Sponsors include Tighe Architecture and BuroHappold. Special thanks to the members, volunteers and sponsors who contributed to the realization of this project.

Earlier Event: July 29
Vis-Á-Vis Performance Series
Later Event: June 28
M&A Catalog Release Party