State of the art – Sennheiser brings immersive sound to Art Basel in Basel
A new sound installation by Zimoun and live set by superstar DJ Robin Schulz take immersive art into new dimensions
Great art is born when human ingenuity and passion come together. This same combination is also the spark for the innovations in technology that redefine how we experience the world. At the Basel edition of Art Basel, which takes place from June 16 to 19, the premier art fair in Modern and contemporary art, Sennheiser will be celebrating this pioneering spirit by displaying its innovations – technologies that embody the leading audio company’s vision to Shape the Future of Audio.
This vision will be brought to life in the Sennheiser Future Sound Cube, a unique space where visitors can experience Sennheiser’s latest innovations firsthand, including the immersive 3D audio technology AMBEO, and Sennheiser’s HE 1, the best headphones in the world. Fittingly, this exploration of sound and space will be expressed through culture as well as technology: A new sound sculpture by Swiss artist Zimoun will be revealed by Sennheiser as part of its Future Audio Artist Program. Meanwhile, the experience of immersive sound will be taken into yet another dimension when renowned producer and DJ Robin Schulz plays a live set at Sennheiser’s Shape the Future of Audio party, held the night before the public opening of Art Basel in Basel. The chart-topping DJ will debut his new song ‘More than a friend’ (feat. Nico Santos) composed for Sennheiser, recorded and mixed in AMBEO.
Enabling great artists, inspired by great art
Sennheiser is Art Basel’s Official Audio Partner. The partnership builds on Sennheiser’s pursuit of perfect sound, a mission that finds a parallel in the everlasting search for insight and inspiration in the world of art. Art’s continual challenge to the status quo redefines limits and boundaries – an ethos that also drives Sennheiser’s ambition to transform sound into something extraordinary. As Daniel Sennheiser, co-CEO of Sennheiser, explains: “Sennheiser has a long history of supporting artists, and this is a rich and reciprocal relationship. The inspirational work we help make possible in turn inspires us to greater heights. Great artists have the vision to let us perceive our world anew. Our own vision is to Shape the Future of Audio, and we are excited to be showing new era-defining technologies and products that also help redefine perception and the limits of experience.”
Dr. Andreas Sennheiser, co-CEO of Sennheiser, explains that beyond creating the technology that enables the artists, Sennheiser will itself be taking an active role in bringing new sound artwork to life during Art Basel: “We are excited to be celebrating the pioneers of sound in art of every type. We invite our guests to journey from the show to a premiere performance by Robin Schulz. This is a journey that demonstrates the incredible breadth of immersive sound and creativity that we are proud to help bring to life.”
Enter the Future Sound Cube
Sennheiser’s Future Sound Cube at Art Basel’s Collectors Lounge is an entirely unique space for audio-visual artworks and sets the stage for two utterly unique sound experiences – a chance to listen to the Sennheiser HE 1 and to encounter a new dimension in audio with AMBEO. Sennheiser’s HE 1 is the epitome of the audio specialist’s art. As the successor to the legendary Orpheus from 1990/91, the HE 1 redraws the benchmark for audiophile sound. The HE 1 is crafted from carefully selected materials including the same Carrara marble that Michelangelo used in his sculptures.
The Future Sound Cube will also offer visitors the opportunity to engage with video installations from several of the visionary sound artists that Sennheiser has partnered with over recent years. Works from artists including Nigel Stanford and Nik Nowak will be presented in this unique environment and made all the more vivid thanks to the unprecedented immersive three-dimensional sound experience created by a 9.1 AMBEO speaker installation.
“AMBEO offers listeners an improvement to their sound experience that is as dramatic as the evolution from mono to stereo,” said Dr. Andreas Sennheiser. “This year, we will be bringing this unique technology into new products and applications. Events such as Art Basel offer the first exciting opportunities for us to share this new listening experience.”
The Future Audio Artist Program debuts immersive artwork from Zimoun
Also presented in the Future Sound Cube will be a film profiling Zimoun – the first artist to be commissioned to create a new work for Sennheiser’s Future Audio Artist Program, an initiative announced at the Art Basel show in Hong Kong in March 2016. Each of the three Art Basel fairs in Basel, Miami Beach and Hong Kong will present a platform to showcase the work of one artist and to choose the next artist to be supported by the program. The jury includes art-world luminaries Prof. Dr. h. c. Walter Smerling and Daniela Hinrichs, as well the involvement of Daniel Sennheiser.
“We founded the Future Audio Artist Program to support some of the world’s most exciting artists working with sound, and to take on an active role in furthering the relationship between sound, art and innovations in technology,“ explained Daniel Sennheiser. “At Art Basel in Basel, we are very excited to present the first work to be born of this project by Zimoun.”
Swiss artist Zimoun is a rising star of the international art world. His work transforms industrial materials and locations into sound sculptures of intricate, organic beauty. In his new sound sculpture, the interior of an old shipping container has been lined with hundreds of tiny, erratic mechanisms, which shift and rustle to form lifelike waves of paper. With sound and movement created in real time by an apparently organic process, the work is both a visual and sonic experience that reflects his interpretation of the Future of Audio. While Zimoun’s creation is inherently analog in nature, he has utilized Sennheiser microphones to help precisely document the intricate and immersive nature of his new work, which can be experienced online at www.sennheiser.com/shapethefutureofaudio.
Robin Schulz to wow guests at first party featuring AMBEO
As the sun sets on June 15, Sennheiser will be revealing a very different side of AMBEO: The Shape the Future of Audio Party takes the experience of 3D immersive audio to the dance floor, with a performance by renowned producer and DJ Robin Schulz. Robin Schulz became a global star within short time and has strongly influenced the world of pop and club-music. The superstar has officially been announced as one of the international most successful German artists of the last two decades. Supporting him on the night will be Hugel, the rising star French DJ and producer who is currently making waves with new single “Coming Home”.
Robin Schulz will premier his all-new song ‘More than a friend’ (feat. Nico Santos) composed especially for Sennheiser and recorded and mixed using AMBEO technology. The performance of this song will be a turning point in the set, when the sound will dramatically expand from stereo to 3D – letting the guests party while entirely immersed in the music.
“As a DJ, you want the whole room come alive and with AMBEO this is actually true. The music surrounds you in all three dimensions with no sweet spot, so the experience is perfect everywhere on the dancefloor,” said Robin Schulz. “It’s the difference between being in a room with the music and being in the music. I’m really excited to be one of the first DJs to be able to make use of this incredible innovation.”