Gijs Gieskes is an industrial designer, mainly creating devices used for performances. This can vary from scripts for Internet to analogue and digital hardware.

Eye, 2004
Video, 03:16 min

Animation made with the Game Boy Camera, on a Game Boy advance with video output

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Game Boy Bricks, 2006
15 bricks

The Game Boy classic has the shape of a brick, and is quite heavy, that’s why Game Boy musicians often call it “the brick”. This snowballed the artist into making real Game Boy bricks. The bricks also exist to preserve the Game Boy as an object for a longer time than the plastics will last. In the future all information might be lost on what a Game Boy is, so then people can still see the Game Boy and wonder what it was used for. This is why Gijs Gieskes buried Game Boys: as a symbol of what archeologists might find in the future.

VRS-1, 2009
Sega megadrive used as sound source and video generator

The video RAM of the Sega gets slowed down by a binary counter, so it can be used as an audio source. There are three oscillators that control a multiplexer; the multiplexer connects one out of eight patch cables to the binary counters input, so there are some nice changing patterns in the sound. Another multiplexer is connected to the same oscillators and makes some extra connections to glitch some more video. There is a magnetic patch bay for the video RAM, and the Sega controller on the front can also be connected with magnets or metal wands. The original idea was that the device can be used for drums, but more like a synth. In another version the artist will probably build a small sequencer into it. It is fun to play with, because you control the sound and the video at the same time.

Prepared Gameboy Reboot, 2010

Prepared Gameboy is a series of works including Prepared Gameboy Bot, Prepared Gameboy Envelope, Prepared Gameboy Generative, Prepared Gameboy Leach and Prepared Gameboy Reboot. In all these cases except Prepared Gameboy Reboot, a Gameboy running Little Sound DJ – one of the cartridges used by chiptunes musicians to turn the Gameboy into a musical tool – is further modified in order to get a particular result. For example, in Prepared Gameboy Bot the Gameboy is armed with two servo mechanisms. One channel of LSDj controls one servo the other channel controls the other servo. While the robot doesn't crawl yet, it can be used for drumming, as the artist does sometimes. In Prepared Gameboy Reboot, two Gameboys running together get reset by the startup sound of themselves, and they run out of phase because while the first is running at 4 mhz, the other runs at 4.194304 mhz (the original speed). The work reminds Felix Gonzalez-Torres' Perfect Lovers (1991), but here the love story seems threatened since the beginning. Yet, in pite of this, it makes beautiful music.

The name of the series pays a tribute to the “prepared piano” technique, pioneered in the Sixties by John Cage and consisting in altering the sound of the piano by placing objects between or on the strings or on the hammers or dampers.