Water Stories: Visual Poetics

Andrea Wollensak


8:45 minutes

Digital audio video

Water Stories: Visual Poetics and Collective Voices is a two-part project consisting of a community audio composition and a generative audio-reactive video work that brings together multiple points of view from local youth, community, and poets in Alaska as they share what water means in their life. Water Stories, by Andrea Wollensak, is the culmination of a year-long artist residency with the Anchorage Museum (2021-2022) that includes an audio composition broadcast at the Anchorage Museum and Out North Radio, live interactive poetry readings and video projections on the museum façade during November 2022.Erin Hollowell and Jen Stever, a museum writer-in-residence, created poems in collaboration with Wollensak’s residency.

This collaboration focused on the intersections of place, writing, and visual forms of language that evolved into an interactive video in which the poet’s voice generates and modifies visual graphical forms via software code written in Processing. The audio reactive video and audio processing was made in collaboration with programmer Bridget Baird and sound artist Brett Terry. Water Stories was funded by the VIA Arts Foundation, the Ammerman Center for Arts and Technology, and Research Matters at Connecticut College.