Foundation for Emerging Technologies and Arts

FETA Prize in Sound Art 2018 awarded to Jaime Oliver La Rosa

With 40 blind submissions from Brazil, Canada, Chile, Peru and the US, Jaime Oliver La Rosa was selected as the 2018 winner of the FETA Prize in Sound Art for his work Caracoles IV

The FETA Prize in Sound Art was established in 2013 to promote a broad range of contemporary American sound and installation arts. Through a two-stage blindfold evaluation process, the judges Jenny Olivia Johnson, Michael Boyd and Joo Won Park chose a small pool of finalists: Brian House’s Urban Intonation, Wendy Steiner’s Traces on the Farther Side, Stephen Lilly’s Background and Jaime Oliver La Rosa’s Caracoles IV. For the sixth edition of the prize, our honorable master judge Gustavo Matamoros selected the winning work Caracoles IV by Jaime Oliver La Rosa, who will receive a 1,000 USD monetary prize, presentation of Caracoles IV at the Emerson Dorsch Gallery in Miami, FL and a spread on the FETA web.

About Caracoles IV:

Caracoles IV is an installation that uses interactive feedback systems to sonically explore modified conch shells known as a pututus, Andean musical instruments fashioned out of a conch shell by cutting the apex of its spire and shaping it like a cornet embouchure. This musical instrument is thus co-created by both a human maker and the non-human large snail which once inhabited it. In this installation, I place a microphone in the embouchure and a speaker at the end of the spiral canal and connect it through a software-mediated feedback system running on a micro-computer that hangs above the shell.

Instead of performing these instruments and hearing their sounds as blown, we instead hear the spectral components of each shell over time. Through a pitch tracker, the system detects resonant feedback frequencies and temporarily cancels them, thereby pushing the system to lock onto a new frequency, and so on. The result is a sequence of resonant frequencies that derive from the shape of the shell and properties of the system; the shell’s shape is sung by feedback. Each shell-system is a collaboration between humans, conch-shells, and interactive systems, but also an interaction between all the shell-systems in the room, each with its own set of resonances.” JOLR

About Jaime Oliver La Rosa

Jaime Oliver La Rosa is a computer music composer, performer, sound artist, and researcher working at the intersection between musical instruments, installations, and open works. Oliver La Rosa’s music and research explores the concept of musical instrument in electronic and computer music, designing instruments that listen, understand, remember and respond. His open source Silent Drum and MANO controllers use computer vision techniques to continuously track and classify hand gestures; his [notes] library  explores computer assisted notation and generative music in Pure Data and LilyPond.

His work has been featured in international festivals and conferences, collaborating with several composers, improvisers and artists in a field of action that spans sound performance and installation, composing and performing music, both for concerts and for theater and dance, creating sound installations and programming open source software.  He obtained a PhD in Computer Music from the University of California, San Diego, where he studied with Miller Puckette, and was Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at Columbia University & the CMC in New York. He is currently Assistant Professor of Composition at NYU and co-director of the Waverly Labs.

For additional information about Caracoles IV, please visit:


Past Winners:

2016 MICHAEL BOYD: Confessional

2015 BRYAN JACOBS Subwhistle
2014 NICOLAS BERNIER frequencies (synthetic variations)
2013 TED APEL Call & Resonance

With the support of Foundation of Emerging Technologies and Arts, Emerson Dorsch Gallery, Harold Golen Gallery and the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and the Cultural Affairs Council, the Miami-Dade County Mayor and Board of County Commissioners.

For more information about the FETA prize in Sound Art, please contact Paula Matthusen at matthusen@fetafoundation.org


2017 prizewinner of the FETA Sound Art Prize selected by Master Judge Rodrigo Sigal from 36 blind submissions from 3 countries in the Americas. 

About Vertex:
“Vertex is an audio-robotic performance created in 2013-2015 by Jean Piché and Patrick Saint-Denis. The project is based on an electromechanical device consisting of a 16 robotic loudspeaker array based on the principle of the Leslie speaker. Each speaker has a drive system to move it up, down and rotate along a vertical axis of around 3 meters high. The device is manipulated live through an assembly of custom software components.
Both kinetic sculpture and music interface, this augmented acousmonium influences directly on the audio composition. The matrix aspect of the device favours mass movements, textures and highlights a set of symbolic resonances close to mass phenomena observed in nature. The movement of bird murmurations and fish schools, or the complex behavior of mechanical energy dissipating in various media such as surface tension for example, are among the evocations due to the device’s physical appearance.” JP & PSD

For additional information about Vertex, please visit: http://www.patricksaintdenis.com/past/vertex/




2016 prizewinner of the FETA Sound Art Prize selected by Master Judgess Annea Lockwood from 28blind submissions from 5 countries in the Americas. 

About Confessional:

Confessional is a user-driven installation that provides the opportunity for composers to briefly take pleasure in and then (symbolically) destroy one of their dubious creations.  This process is accomplished with a computer (running Max or Max Runtime) and a recording provided by the user that is processed live.  The audio processing unfolds in stages and mirrors the phases of animal decomposition: fresh, bloat, active decay, advanced decay, and dry remains.  Through this series of transformations, the user’s piece transitions from its original state to nearly imperceptible bits of noise.  Users may also log this activity into an official registration book, and they may create and take home a frameable certificate commemorating the destruction.  Any other way(s) that a user wishes to document the event are encouraged (“selfies,” social media announcements, etc.), and a Facebook page is provided to collect such documentation.  For score-based works, implements will be provided to facilitate the physical destruction of scores: paper shredder or scissors for indoor venues, a fire pit or barbecue grill for outdoor venues (if allowed).” MB

Artist's website: Michael Boyd


designed by PZRM 2016