Strings is a musical instrument that you can walk into. Once inside, visitors become performers, moving through the space to find different ranges of pitch and timbres in the instrument that surrounds them. The sounds are generated synthetically but, as is the case with traditional acoustic instruments, the experience includes texture, space, color and movement.
We are happy to have been invited to install Strings on two exciting venues in the next month: the New Interfaces for Musical Expression Conference in Ann Arbor, and the Ventana 244 Art Space in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
The first version of Strings was installed on NYU's ITP Winter Show, where a few hundred people played with it –you can see some footage of it in the video on top–. We want the next version to be even more immersive and magical, and this how we plan to do it:
1) Occupying the whole space with our strands, creating a forest of Strings. To do this, we will need more micro-controllers, more sensors, and better speakers.
2) Using a wider (but still subtle) color palette. We have found a brand of thread that is nice to the touch and comes in beautiful and varied shades.
3) Making the interaction more natural: instead of having to use a bow, allowing people to play by simply plucking the strings. We have a couple of strategies in mind to tackle this problem. The first one is using piezos as vibration sensors. We have prototyped this, and it works quite well! (you can see a video in the Updates section).
4) Exploring different aural textures by building our own synthesizers using Pure Data. This will also mean that our project become implemented fully with Open Source technologies: the Arduino Micro-controller and IDE, Processing.org, and Pure Data.
With the funds raised through Kickstarter, we will purchase high-quality threads, hardware and electronic components for the installation. The pledges will also help support us in traveling and staying in Ann Arbor during the time of the NIME conference.
Thank you so much for helping kickstart the full Strings project. Stay in touch and follow our progress on http://s.trin.gs/ .
- (20 days)