'Topology Chamber 2' (2015) is an acousmatic composition in 5th order
3-D ambisonics. The work is created from the sonification of data
recorded from human spatial motion resulting from playing with a balloon
and a cymbal.
A number of markers were placed at key points on the body, balloon and
cymbal, and then while exploring the kinetic and acoustic properties of
these instruments, a high-speed motion tracking camera system recorded
the 3-D location of each marker and a microphone array recorded the
actual sound made by the instruments.
Datasets and acoustic recordings were then analysed to reveal rules that
could determine the segmentation of temporal-spatial micro- and
meso-scale motion-gesture ‘objects’, which in turn allowed data and
sound to be segmented into phrase, sub-phrase, smaller gestural units
and ‘coarticulated’ atoms (which are the tiny elements that contextually
‘smear’ into whole gestures). The rules were then used to create a
system for composing ’fake’ datasets from the different kinds of
segments embodied with the physical properties of the original
The new data was interactively sonified in 3-D ambisonics with the
composer’s own software called Cheddar. Musically the work attempts to
project a sense of tangible sound where tensions emerge from the pull
between known gestural archetypes and invisible music.
Topology Chamber II is an early work in which I explored precise data
sonification of human motion as a means for synthesising spatial sound
and musical structure.