80 mesh - the shape of sound: music visualized with sand
original content
mar 12, 2013
80 mesh - the shape of sound: music visualized with sand


’80 mesh – the shape of sound’
all images courtesy marte

 

 

80 mesh – the shape of sound‘ is a project that investigates fragmentation, reconstruction and repetition generated through the morphogenetic possibilities of sound waves – visualized through the modeling of fine grain sand. the work was curated by ravenna-based cultural association marte and born from a collaboration under the artists group CaCO3 -  coordinated by daniele torcellini.

 

the multidisciplinary artwork – informed by the research of the german physicist ernst chladni – is a device composed of three 50 x 50 cm metallic plates that are placed horizontally alongside each other, with a quantity of garnet sand (80 mesh references the particles size) homogeneously dispersed over the plates. the dishes were electrically linked to the sound waves produced by an onde martenot -  an early electronic musical instrument invented in 1928 with a similar sound to a theremin – played by ratsimandresy. a transducer converted the electrical signals of the waves into mechanical impulses, and the sand, due to the oscillations of the plates, produced many different structures in response to the wavelengths of the sound. the forms produced were either strictly regular, symmetrical or would gradually grow to become more and more complex – the higher the frequency, the more detailed the patterning. some wavelengths defined sharper forms than others, due to the resonant frequencies of the plates.

 

during a ten day residency, ratsimandresy played a fifteen minute long piece that followed a strictly formalized procedure. the plates were mapped in order to discover the resonant frequencies of each and a selection of those frequencies were used to create a sequence of forms as a way to represent the personal choice of the musician. this means the composition was not realized from notes but from the generated forms and, specifically, from a sequence of forms. the composition consists of three voices, one for each plate.

 

 


the forms produced were either strictly regular, symmetrical or would gradually grow to become more and more complex

 

 


the higher the frequency, the more detailed the patterning

 

 


onde martenot -  an early electronic musical instrument invented in 1928 with a similar sound to a theremin

 

 


the composition was not realized from notes but from the generated forms and, specifically, from a sequence of forms

 

 

the device is composed of three 50 x 50 cm  metallic plates that are placed horizontally alongside each other
 

 

a transducer converts the electrical signals of the waves into mechanical impulses causing the sand to create various forms

 

 

project details:

 

composer: nadia ratsimandresy
music expert: alessio buttazzoni
video-maker: miriam dessì
technical collaborator: marco parolla
curator: marte
coordinator: daniele torcellini

 

 

designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication.
see more project submissions from our readers
here.

comments policy
LOG IN VIA
login with designboom
designboom's comment policy guidelines
generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

- please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
- please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
- please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
- please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
- please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
(there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
the best 100-200 entries too.)

a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.

product library