Origamibiro is a collaborative project consisting of three core members: musician, soundtrack composer and producer Tom Hill, visual artist and filmmaker The Joy Of Box, and multi-instrumentalist Andy Tytherleigh. Originally started as a solo project for Tom, Origamibiro has since evolved into an audio-visual collective, producing studio music, art objects, interactive installations and hauntingly original live audio-visual performances. Origamibiro like to create work with an array of unorthodox processes and contraptions, found objects, video feeds and multi instrumentalism. Their aim is to create works of texture, lyricism and intensity.
Previous to Origamibiro, Tom Hill had been working with electronica and found-sound sampling through projects such as Wauvenfold and Penfold Plum. Origamibiro's first release, 'Cracked Mirrors and Stopped Clocks' saw a radical return to Tom's classical and electric guitar roots and was produced entirely by Tom. The release of the second album 'Shakkei' saw an expansion in Origamibiro's sound- from an intimate personal space to an expansive terrain ('Shakkei' in fact translates to 'borrowed landscape'). The third album 'Shakkei Remixed' came soon after featuring remixes by a host of artists, reinterpreting Origamibiro's material in further directions still. Origamibiro's live performances also expanded, now involving treated books, typewriters, found celluloid, paper, eerie wildlife recordings, home movies, sellotape and bespoke visual contraptions. All of these things had been added, adapted, even destroyed as a way to generate images and audio that could evoke a feeling, a response, an understanding or perhaps a question from audiences.
2014 sees the re-release of Origamibiro's entire back catalogue through Denovali and also the release of their fourth studio album 'Odham's Standard'. Discussions concerning tone and theme took place much earlier in the writing process this time around and unbeknown to each other, both Tom and Jim were taking an interest in more supernatural aspects of audio and video material generation. Jim had begun to research into spirit photography, where images of deceased spirits are apparently imprinted onto photographic plates through the presence of a medium. Looking for an audio equivalent, Tom began looking into EVP or electronic voice phenomenon whereby hidden voices from deceased spirits appear to present themselves in audio recordings. What is fascinating about this process is not how legitimate the phenomenon actually is but how dependant it is on the decision or need of the viewer or listener to believe it is significant or even personal.
Interestingly, there have been many attempts over the years to debunk or disprove the validity of spirit photography and yet for every court case there are also a number of witnesses willing to passionately testify that not only is the phenomenon real but that it applied directly to them. Arthur Conan Doyle, was the creator of the most famous detective in the world and, conversely, a staunch defendant of the validity of spirit photography.
In his infamous treatise 'The Case For Spirit Photography' he is both naive and strangely prescient: “Victorian science would have left the world hard and clean and bare, like a landscape in the moon. (however) There is nothing scientifically impossible, so far as I can see, in some people seeing things that are invisible to others. One or two consequences are obvious, the experiences of children will be taken more seriously. Cameras will be forthcoming. These folk who appear to be our neighbours, with only some small difference of vibration to separate us, will become familiar.”