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Air Sculpture

Have you ever seen the symetrical patterns on a piece of metal that is covered lightly with sand and bowed with a violin bow? Imagine if you could see the 3D patterns that sound makes in air. (does anyone know a way to do this?) Now imagine that artists competed to make the most startling short term (1-15 seconds) 3D air sculptures
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I was just reading that Frank Zappa called his guitar solos "air sculptures". I was thinking that it would be truer to say about a piece of music like a FZ guitar solo that it was an "air movie" since the PROGRESSION of configurations of arrangements of pressure in the mass of air would be what was more characteristic than say any actual configuration. So appreciating it would require the appreciater much more to act over a period of time rather than just to apperciate all at once.

Pop song structure has been at 3 minutes and 30 seconds for a good hundred years now, not only because of the orriginal sizes of those wax cylanders but also hopefully because of something more hardwired. But everything changes and especially with information overload people are getting used to appreciating more in a short period of time. I was thinking of those 10 or 15 second short musical interludes on public broadcasting radio and how they are long enough to interest you but not long enough to lose you and I was thinking that it would be really cool to make the most complex and interesting sound you could make in short enough of a time to exploit people's natural sense of curiosity but not long enough to employ their ability to classify and ignore. I guess sounds or "songs" like this could be sculpted really calculatingly with computer graphical music interfaces, or they could be performed by large ensembles -- the point being to make a sound that transversed the complete dynamic tonal harmonic etc range in as short a time as possible while not being too complex to understand. I would imagine sound like this would be impossible to ignore, and that an "arms race" of sound development like this would spawn impossible to ignore sound bytes that would help big evil corporations sell calculatedly diluted inanities and far seeing artists tell new stories alike.

And I was also thinking that that type of sound would be better described by the term "air sculpture" as in a single- stroke like experience that balances the time and space aspect of sound more than a guitar solo or a symphony which relys more heavily on the time aspect. Does anyone have any links to short sculptural sound bytes like this?

JesusHChrist, Sep 16 2005

Seeing with Sound http://www.seeingwithsound.com/voice.htm
Use the java demo on this page to create amazing looped sound sculptures [JesusHChrist, Sep 16 2005]

Cloud Sculptures Firework_20Clouds
My approach to short-lived air sculptures. [DrCurry, Sep 16 2005]

(?) Amazing lo-tech visualizations http://video.google...7253148167375317006
watch this Google Video of sand on a speaker [JesusHChrist, Oct 06 2006]


While cutting tile on the wet saw this morning the light coming in the window was just right to show the various patterns that the vibration was making in the layer of water on the saw table. By playing with the amount of force I applied to the cut, I could make what looked like individual flames that rippled up the length of the table.
I knew there was a halfbaked idea in there somewhere and I think you nailed it.

       I've seen the patterns that 2f mentions on a tile being cut, in the tub of the wet saw, in dishes of water sitting in a sink with the garbage disposal running, in the tank of my Water-Pik while it was running. It's a very visually interesting effect.   

       I wonder if anyone has ever done an art/science piece that employed speakers or other devices to vibrate a container of water. Different frequencies coming from different directions in different amplitudes and wave shapes might make some fun-to-watch patterns.   

       I remember seeing a demonstration of an acoustically based process that sort of stratified, concentrated and suspended heavy particulate pollution in mid-air. So, I'd say there's a chance that some form of the proposed idea might work if you allow for some sort of heavy smoke or somesuch to be wafted in to the air at the start.   

       An acquaintance of my brother-in-law had developed a speaker system which did some magical constructive and destructive interference to create a virtual speaker in the air between two emitters. I can't remember what the guy's web site is now.
half, Sep 16 2005

       I've heard it is possible to create beautiful patterns on a wall by reflecting a bright laser beam off the cone of a large speaker.
Adze, Sep 16 2005

       Lissajous, [half]?
bristolz, Sep 16 2005

       At the opening ceremony of the Olympics last year, there was an effect of a 3D DNA double helix in smoke - I only caught a glimpse of it. Looked like a blue laser. Does anyone know how it was achieved?
coprocephalous, Sep 16 2005

       [JHC] - Big bun for you, mate.   

       [Adze] - Trying that out tonight   

       [Pa've] - I thought of chalk dust, but both chalk dust and smoke give you breathing difficulties. Cracked oil might be better, but it's usually only ever used around loud music and has never yet showed any indication of the sound passing through it. It is possible though that if you strobe light it at audio frequencies you may be able to 'freeze' the wave movement that would otherwise not be visible.
wagster, Sep 16 2005

       Perhaps this would look like the performance being given in the magnificent concert hall as a background to one of the scenes from Star Wars III.
ConsulFlaminicus, Sep 16 2005

       Could you maybe image the sculpture with strobed Schlieren photography? Maybe Schlieren holography (if such a thing is possible)?
AbsintheWithoutLeave, Sep 16 2005

       But [Ian] these could just as well be vacuum sculptures.
coprocephalous, Sep 16 2005

       That very cool [Ian], will you show them to me one day?
wagster, Sep 16 2005

       [wags] they've been on the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Sq for some years now - only replaced yesterday
coprocephalous, Sep 16 2005

       Chladni patterns. </smartass>
angel, Sep 16 2005

       Nice [IT]. It's probably been done, but maybe you could create a sculpture by defining the space where it exists - by writing reviews, articles about it, etc. Without, of course, actually building it. In fact, you could probably get away without even giving a physical description. The Emperor's New Sculpture, sort of thing.
moomintroll, Sep 16 2005

       If you had struggled for years as a conceptual artist, you could actually get that in the Tate Modern. As it is they would have you down (probably correctly) as a chancer.
wagster, Sep 16 2005

       The intro to this idea and the idea itself seem to be 2 different things. As far as I can tell the text of the idea involved making a very strange noise. I like the idea of creating visible patters with sound waves better.   

       I wonder if a cloud chamber could be used? Alternatively, those cracked oil smoke machines might work in an environment without breezes. The other possibility would be to do this underwater with a suspension of neutrally buoyant semiopaque particles.
bungston, Jul 21 2006


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