ISM Supporter Program

The goal of the ISM is to demonstrate the cultural impact of sound and establish a new and permanent home for a cutting-edge museum experience in Berlin. The ISM team is We are actively engaged in promoting this vision through a series of three global touring exhibitions. ISM seeks to raise public awareness of sound in all its forms - promoting “sound literacy” - while supporting the growing network of artists, researchers, academics, and enthusiasts interested in these disciplines. The role of the ISM is to facilitate and support this community to further explore the scope of sound while educating the public.

ISM is actively developing partnerships and projects which connect efforts in sound and music with communities and organizations working to build a better future. While integrating global sustainable development goals, ISM aims to effect positive change through immersive art, music, and sound.

As part of an initiative to support our  long term goal, the ISM is releasing an album featuring recordings from the ISM Hexadome installation, featuring such artists as Suzanne Ciani, Ben Frost, Peter Van Hoesen, and Frank Bretschneider. 

"I thoroughly support and encourage the work of ISM to bring the experience of spatial sound to the world, and in particular, the ISM Hexadome. I have long envisioned this very thing going back to the 1970's and feel that the passion and hard work it will take to accomplish this is in the best hands with this committed team." 

Suzanne Ciani

The ISM HEXADOME Listening Experience

Contributors of at least €40 will receive a limited edition vinyl record featuring eight live installations recorded in binaural sound at MASS MoCA (Museum of Contemporary Art, Massachusetts). In addition, a selection of video stills have been donated from visual artists who contributed to the installation program since the ISM Hexadome’s premiere at the Gropius Bau Museum in Berlin. 

The ISM Hexadome has been presented at Gray Area Festival for the Arts in San Francisco, the Musée d’art Contemporain Montreal for the MUTEK Festival, and MASS MoCA in North Adams, Massachusetts. This album is an archive of some of the ISM Hexadome program developed thus far, and a commemoration of the North American tour as part of the ‘Wunderbar Together’ initiative from the Goethe Institut and German Federal Foreign Office.

Making the ISM Hexadome at MASS MoCA Record

Frederic Stader, Mastering Engineer for the album:

The challenge cutting the Hexadome recordings was that Binaural recordings have a very wide stereo image that includes a wide amount of „out of phase“ signal. This results in the cutting stylus having to cut deeper, and if not monitored carefully, it can cut so deep that later on the playback side becomes „untrackable“ for any stylus or could even jump out of the groove. Very rarely it happens that it was cut too deep into the acetate that it reached the aluminium plate which is the „bone“ covered by the vinyl acetate lacquer and did damage to the cutting stylus.  In a normal cutting process an elliptical equalisation would be applied to correct this phasing problem. But not in this transfer of the Hexadome recordings, which was cut pure as it was recorded.

Spectrograph of Suzanne Ciani’s ‘Under the Electric Sea’ 

Why a Supporter Program?

In 2021, ISM will begin to present ways in which sound and music can be a vehicle for change - and we will explore the potential and possibility of a new center, or physical home, for sound, immersive art and electronic music culture in Berlin.

Donations will help us to further develop our efforts in providing a platform to support sound, artistic, and music communities. All donations will enable projects exploring a universe of sound, programs aimed at increasing our collective sound literacy, and understanding the essential role sound plays in our daily lives. This will be conveyed through events, exhibitions, educational courses and talks, artist residencies, and research development. Most of all, your support is further confirmation that together we can build a home for sound, immersive art, and electronic music culture in Berlin.

Artists Contributing to the ISM Hexadome Gift

Sound - Eight binaural recordings  from the eleven installations created for the ISM Hexadome so far have been pressed to vinyl in stunning three dimensional detail. Listening to the recordings on headphones recreates the detailed sense of spatialisation and movement of the ISM Hexadome’s immersive 52-channel sound system that these works were exclusively composed for.

Track Listing:

  • A) Ben Frost - Spatialized deconstructions of material from the 2016 "The Centre Cannot Hold"
  • B) CAO - The Burial Theme: Trans-Matter Port and Objects
  • C) Frank Bretschneider  - Approximate Accuracy
  • D) Herman Kolgen - Retina
  • E) Lara Sarkissian - Thresholds
  • F) Peter Van Hoesen - Adaptive Enquiry No. 1
  • G) René Löwe - The P!eace
  • H) Suzanne Ciani - Under the Electric Sea

More info on the artists can be found here.

Visuals - 10 still images excerpted from the 11 installations that have been created for the Hexadome so far, chosen by the visual artists who made them. Each visual artist collaborated with a sound artist to create a piece for the ISM Hexadome. Their visuals were presented using 6 projection screens arranged in the hexagonal structure of the ISM Hexadome. 

  • AudeRrose - visuals for Suzanne Ciani
  • Heleen Blanken - visuals for Peter Van Hoesen
  • Holly Herndon & Mathew Dryhurst (Bonus Visual Material, track was not possible to use for the record)
  • Jemma Woolmore - visuals for Lara Sarkissian
  • MFO - visuals for Ben Frost
  • Pfadfinderei - visuals for René Löwe
  • Michael Tan - visuals for CAO
  • Pierce Warnecke - visuals for Frank Bretschneider
  • Tarik Barri (Bonus visual material, track created with Thom Yorke was not possible to use for the record)

More info on the artists can be found here.

About the ISM Hexadome

The ISM Hexadome is an immersive 360° audiovisual installation combining cutting-edge art and technology. It is the first step in the Institute for Sound & Music’s initiative to build a museum for sound, immersive art, and electronic music culture. The Klangdom, an advanced multi-channel speaker configuration created by ZKM | Institute for Music and Acoustics, is hosted within a visual projection structure designed by the digital media studio Pfadfinderei. The Klangdom utilizes the 3D audio spatialization software Zirkonium, developed by ZKM | Center for Art and Media in Karlsruhe, Germany, and Panoramix, developed by IRCAM’s STMS research lab in Paris, France.

ISM Hexadome Acknowledgements

The ISM Our sincerely thanks to the Goethe Institut, German Federal Foreign Office, Kulturstiftung des Bundes, Berliner Festspiele, ZKM | Center for Art and Media, IRCAM, EMPAC, Meyer Sound, Epson America, Pfadfinderei, System 180, Squareball Digital, Gropius Bau, Gray Area Foundation for the Arts, MUTEK, MAC Montréal, MASS MoCA, all contributing artists, the ISM Advisory Board, the our dedicated volunteers, and those who visited the ISM Hexadome for making this record possible.

About the ISM

The Institute for Sound and Music e.V. is a Berlin-based non-profit organization dedicated to the culture of sound, immersive art, and electronic music. Currently, the ISM is raising support and awareness of our goals to demonstrate the cultural impact of sound and to establish a new, permanent home for a cutting-edge museum experience in Berlin, via three global touring exhibitions. 

ISM is actively developing partnerships and projects which connect efforts in sound and music with communities and organizations working to build a better future. While integrating global sustainable development goals, ISM aims to effect positive change through immersive art, music, and sound.

In 2017, the ISM was established by a community of dedicated individuals living in Berlin, working in the field of sound, art, and technology, who shared the common goal to create a permanent space for sound and direct experience, immersive art, future technologies, and electronic music.


MASS MoCA ISM Hexadome

The Institute for Sound & Music (ISM) announces the final location for the ISM Hexadome experience for the Wunderbar Together initiative at MASS MoCA - Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. This marks the finale of a meaningful, international collaboration spanning two years of dedicated work made possible by the Goethe Institute and German Federal Foreign Office as part of the Wunderbar Together initiative.

Programme Partners