LINES is an interactive musical instrument which is one of the most inviting and famous piece in the Tate Modern Museum. No musical experiences are required to perform this sound art which makes it constantly surrounded by kids to play with it. The five lines painted in different color on the wall are connected with different harmonies. By placing hands on different lines, the audience can enjoy this free, casual and playful music made by their own. The exhibition is created by the Swedish composer Anders Lind who has created a series of interactive sound art with simplicity. The combination of programming sensors and colors allow the audience to experience the fine line between “sound” and “music” freely and subtly.

Video Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hP36xoPXDnM


Robert Henke explores boundaries between music and mathematical equations and algorithms. Inspired by radical club music and the complexity of modern-day compositions, Henke sets out on a journey to re-invent music production through computer systems and codes. He has utilized his experience in music production to help create mixing software. In his concert, Lumiere, Henke also utilized light and geometric shapes to help host a new experiential environment for the audience. This idea has lead him to reiterate this concept multiple times. Henke also often works on art installations that are featured in museums such as Tate Modern in London and PS-1 in New York.

Looking Outward – 10

The Great Animal Orchestra | Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain |  Artsy

The project I chose to write about for this assignment is called the Great Animal Orchestra. As I discussed music in LO-04, this focuses more on sound art. The Great Animal Orchestra makes use of recorded soundscapes with lit up spectrograms of these sounds displayed across walls of a dark room. The sounds came from the many recordings of terrestrial and marine species documented by ecologist Bernie Krause. He has collected over 5,000 hours of recordings from over 15,000 species. I find this project interesting because it combines nature and technology by creating a digital environment representing a variety of ecosystems. 

LO 10

Anders Lind‘s work in sound art is both one of the physical and the computational. One of his notable projects, Lines, explores the relationship between the artist, the medium, and the viewer.

In Lines, Lind built instruments of sensors, where a viewer engaging with the marked lines in different ways would create sounds of different pitches and tempos. The three iterations (wall, floor, and ceiling) all follow the same basic principle-audience interaction with the lines create audio feedback.

I think that this exhibit could very easily be explored in the context of performance art and dance. Like in my last LO, this exhibit could be used to study motifs within the choreography, making the music and performance one and the same.

LO-10 (computer music)

For this LO I’ll be looking at a service that provides computer generated music for creative users.This service/machine/Ai is called AIVA. The service allows you to set various parameters including instruments, tempo, etc. or completely randomized if left blank. The resulting music created actually sounds quite professional and due to its random nature, it will not likely create the same track twice. To ensure that, AIVA uses stochastic algorithms to randomize each of its elements to allow for ‘original’ creations every single time. Looking through each sample created for each genre, I wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between aiva and a professional track.


Looking Outwards 10 – Computer Music

Image of Haptic Organ

Haptic Organ is a kinetic soundscape installation created by COLLECTIVE and honh1m. ‘Haptic’ comes from the greek word ‘haptikos,’ which means “pertaining to the sense of touch.” This installation is based on kinesthetic communication, in other words the installation is generated using motion of hands to create variations of visual displays and sounds. The intention of this project was to make music visible, tangible, and shareable at the same time. This encourages people to interact with each other, which was the main goal of the creators and purpose of the installation Haptic Organ is designed with 20 transparent tubes with metallic spheres in them that move up and down through initiated air movement by hand motion. Audiences can freely perform their own music with the aid of sensors that give different notes across an octave. The volume of musical sounds from the installation can be controllable with growing and falling movements of hands over the haptic interfaces. What I really love about this artwork is that there is a unity between artificial (tube and sphere balls) and natural (sound energy) presented in a single piece of art that encourages interaction between people and the installation itself. I can really sense the artist’s sensibilities for interactivity and minimalism by looking at the complexity of interaction created through visuals and sound as well as simplicity of the installation design. 

Website: http://h0nh1m.com/

Video of Haptic Organ

LO_10_Computer Music

In this week’s topic, I would like to talk about artist Gottfried Michael Koenig’s work.

Gottfried is a contemporary composer and learnt both music theories and music representations. His work is drastically different from traditional composer’s work. In his presentation in the link above, the music is very suitable for a sci-fi movie background. I admire him for using this avant-garde method to make music in the 1950s, which is a very early stage for even computer and network development. I believe his style and working method had a big impact on the later electronic music. Even though electronic music is not my personal favorite music style, I can still see the art expression in it. This music trend, again as I mentioned before, is very modern and very distinct from all the previous music trends.

I can not guess the algothism and method used in this piece of music, but by guessing, I think he made the basic music elements into variables and borrowed randomness into it. 

Basically, I think every Epoch-making work is precious.

Looking Outwards 10: Computer Music

The staircase to the staircase from the ground floor to the basement of Hunt Library here at Carnegie Mellon University has an installation designed to be interactive between those who use the stairwell. The light installation creates a noise with different frequencies and tones based on the location of the person. Then, in the end, there is a chime to signify a goal met.

This project is taking an everyday task and filling it with fun and excitement. The student secured permission to place the installation and started working on how to track movement. He was able to use the OpenPose library from the CMU Perceptual Computing lab and the Unity 3D game engine to find positions. I admired how the developer had an idea and kept working at it and acknowledged that it is not complete. He batted with a lot of creative choices like whether he wanted it to be noticeably interactive or a hidden display.

The code and more information can be found here.

Stairs Of Hunt Library

Looking Outwards – 10

For this week’s Looking Outwards, I decided to dive deeper into the Drum Machine used in Steely Dan’s 1980 album Gaucho. By this time the band was quite popular and had access to the best studio musicians in the country to assist in their recordings, but found that often even they weren’t capable of the specificity that the band desired. In 1978 while recording, they contracted Roger Nichols to create their own high quality digital sampling drum machine, Wendel, for recordings on the album. This happened a whole two years before the release of the groundbreaking Roland TR-808 and 909, and the 1978 recordings set an example of what was to come in the next decade.

Looking Outwards 10

Coin Switch – Fedde ten Berge

Video of installation experience in the perspective of a visitor.

Coin Switch is an installation that plays different sounds and alters lighting based on movement within the room. It is interactive art that reacts differently based on the visitor’s unique sequence of movements. This installation was inspired by old coin switches, which was used to count coins. Berge incorporates this old principle by making the visitor flip a coin switch in order to start the sound and light.

I admire how the visitor’s movements reflect different sounds that can evoke different emotions. For example, if the visitor moves quickly, the sounds and lights are more brisk and high pitched, suggesting a sense of urgency. If a visitor moves slowly, the lights flicker more slowly and the sound pitch is lower. I admire how the sounds and lighting is not random, but deliberately affected by the speed and types of movement of the visitor.

Coin Switch uses context-sensitive electronic sound synthesis and sound design to play the sound and change the lights synchronously. The installation has a variety of algorithms that can create a range of different sound and light operations.

photo of Coin Switch installation that projects the light