Actions

Influences on art and music::Cymatics

::concepts

Patterns::chladni    Sound::jenny    Which::plate    Cymatics::surface    Nodal::music    Shape::created

Influences on art and music Devices for displaying nodal images have influenced visual arts and contemporary music. Artist Björk created projections of cymatics patterns in collaboration with Evan Grant by using bass frequencies on tour for her album Biophilia.

Hans Jenny's book on Chladni figures influenced Alvin Lucier and helped lead to Lucier's composition Queen of the South. Jenny's work was also followed up by Center for Advanced Visual Studies (CAVS) founder György Kepes at MIT.<ref name="kepes">György Kepes profile at MIT</ref> His work in this area included an acoustically vibrated piece of sheet metal in which small holes had been drilled in a grid. Small flames of gas burned through these holes and thermodynamic patterns were made visible by this setup.

In the mid 1980s, visual artist Ron Rocco, who also developed his work at CAVS, employed mirrors mounted to tiny servo motors, driven by the audio signal of a synthesizer and amplified by a tube amp to reflect the beam of a laser. This created light patterns which corresponded to the audio's frequency and amplitude. Using this beam to generate video feedback and computers to process the feedback signal, Rocco created his "Andro-media" series of installations. Rocco later formed a collaboration with musician David Hykes, who practiced a form of Mongolian overtone chanting with The Harmonic Choir, to generate cymatic images from a pool of liquid mercury, which functioned as a liquid mirror to modulate the beam of a Helium-Neon laser from the sound thus generated. Photographs of this work can be found in the Ars Electronica catalog of 1987.<ref>"In Light of Sound study 1" </ref>

Contemporary German photographer and philosopher Alexander Lauterwasser has brought cymatics into the 21st century using finely crafted crystal oscillators to resonate steel plates covered with fine sand and to vibrate small samples of water in Petri dishes. His first book, Water Sound Images,<ref name="Lauterwasser">Lauterwasser, Alexander (2006). Water Sound Images. ISBN 1-888138-09-2</ref> translated into English in 2006, features imagery of light reflecting off the surface of water set into motion by sound sources ranging from pure sine waves to music by Beethoven, Karlheinz Stockhausen, electroacoustic group Kymatik (who often record in ambisonic surround sound) and overtone singing. The resulting photographs of standing wave patterns are striking. Lauterwasser's book focused on creating detailed visual analogues of natural patterns ranging from the distribution of spots on a leopard to the geometric patterns found in plants and flowers, to the shapes of jellyfish and the intricate patterns found on the shell of a tortoise.

Composer Stuart Mitchell and his father T.J. Mitchell claimed that Rosslyn Chapel's carvings supposedly contain references to cymatics patterns. In 2005 they created a work called The Rosslyn Motet realised by attempting to match various Chladni patterns to 13 geometric symbols carved onto the faces of cubes emanating from 14 arches.<ref>Wilson, Chris (May 19, 2011). "The Rosslyn Code: Is a Scottish Da Vinci responsible for the Rosslyn melodies?", Slate.com.</ref> Like many claims in the cymatics community, the hypothesis that the carvings represent Chladni patterns is not supported by scientific or historical evidence. One of the problems is that many of the 'box' carvings are not original, having been replaced in the 19th century following damage by erosion.


Cymatics sections
Intro  History  Work of Hans Jenny  Cymatics as pseudoscience  Influences on art and music  Influences in engineering  See also  References  External links  

Influences on art and music
PREVIOUS: Cymatics as pseudoscienceNEXT: Influences in engineering
<<>>