Along with a looped audio playback that is repeated over and over again, words are displayed on a screen. At some points, new words that appear change the visitor’s acoustic perception of the looped sound.
In the beginning, the written and the spoken words are tightly connected, but as soon as that connection is disrupted by some kind of interference—such as different words being displayed—visitors are made strongly aware of the existence of new sounds that they didn’t consciously perceive as such at first. Another aspect of this work is that, even when physically hearing the same sounds, different visitors perceive them as different acoustic phenomena.
“mikikikikimimi” is a work in which visitors use words displayed on a monitor as keys for discerning sounds from an audio loop. From those loops containing multiple streams, visitors perceive sounds and words at the same time, and try to locate the respective streams they indicate. One of the phenomena of acoustic illusion in human auditory perception is “auditory stream segregation,” an effect where our perception of short, looped sounds gradually changes when continuously listening to them. This work combines the effect of auditory stream segregation with a perceptional mechanism called “auditory-visual integration” to induce the visitor’s acoustic perception, with onomatopoeia displayed on a screen serving as clues.