Listening to the light

The dreaded room clean, a task with few positives apart from this discovery – the flyer from the London Design Festival which I attended a while ago. The flyer detailed the work of the designers Leif.designpark who created an installation at the Tramshed that played with the interaction of the senses. Quite simply, when the music is played, various light bulbs flicker on in sync. This was interesting as viewers became more conscious about changes in the music and also slightly confused as to the cause – did the bulbs light up in response to a piano crescendo or vice versa? The fusion of the two being both unexpected, refreshing and it has to be said slightly bizarre looking – the small space filled with hanging bulbs made me feel small and quite like Alice in Wonderland. However, as their flyer notes, I did feel intrigued by this reinterpretation of sight and sound, and how the whole thing works. As the flyer continues, giving a bit of useful (and somewhat simplistic) information on the whole physics-cum-art operation of the installation-

“Music is fed through a device that transforms sound signals into electronic energy. The device transforms and heightens the energy, expressing it through light. The use of incandescent bulbs allows the smooth change from 0 to 100 levles to create both mellow and dazzling light. Keeping pace with the volume and tone, the music is divided into 4 registers so the performance of the lighting can express the complexity of the music in detail.”

Much of this complexity unfortunately missed on my novice ears and wandering eyes, but I think it makes for a good video, as well as an early glimpse into how interactive displays might reinvent noise and light in the future. For example, Christmas lights that detect and turn on in tune with carols…? You heard it here first.

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