Project image
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$19,024
pledged of $150,000pledged of $150,000 goal
220
backers
Funding Canceled
Funding for this project was canceled by the project creator on Aug 4 2015
$19,024
pledged of $150,000pledged of $150,000 goal
220
backers
Funding Canceled
Funding for this project was canceled by the project creator on Aug 4 2015

About

We're a group of designers and engineers who create cross-sensory experiences. 

Incubated as a collaborative art & technology project including residents of NEW INC at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, REIFY is a physical music platform that combines the best of both physical and digital music technology, and creates a new way to experience music.

REIFY transforms music into something you can hear, see and hold.

We make totems that visually represent an artist's song, and encode them with music and interactive visual experiences that you can play on your mobile phone or tablet. The mobile app used to play totems is called Stylus.

Totems are encoded with music and visuals that can be played back using the Stylus mobile app.
Totems are encoded with music and visuals that can be played back using the Stylus mobile app.

Our platform lets artists express their music in physical and visual form, and gives fans an interactive, multi-sensory experience that they can share with others. REIFY is a new medium of creative expression for artists, and a deeper, connected music experience for fans.

We've spent the last 9 months building and testing our platform in direct collaboration with musicians. Now we've partnered with a group of amazing artists on this Kickstarter to release their music on totems, to fans everywhere.

HEALTH, mae, YACHT and Tim Fain are REIFY early adopters designing totems for this Kickstarter.
HEALTH, mae, YACHT and Tim Fain are REIFY early adopters designing totems for this Kickstarter.
Every totem can feel as unique as the song it represents.
Every totem can feel as unique as the song it represents.
                                                     
Close up of a 3d printed PLA totem.
Close up of a 3d printed PLA totem.
Close up of a 3d printed PLA totem.
Close up of a 3d printed PLA totem.
Close up of a cast bronze totem.
Close up of a cast bronze totem.

We’ve designed hundreds of experimental totems for many different kinds of music. Through many beautiful trials and educational errors we've established an audio-to-physical design process where each totem can look and feel as unique as the song it represents...while remaining structurally sound.

We've prototyped our totem fabrication processes to find a balance between creative flexibility and lasting, physical objects. The rewards for this Kickstarter will be 3D printed in PLA plastic, with limited editions cast in bronze.

When not being used to experience music in a whole new way through the Stylus mobile app, each totem is also a beautiful stand-alone art object. Imagine having your favorite music live in your home as physical art you can hold, display and share.

Totems are also stand-alone art objects you can hold, display and share.
Totems are also stand-alone art objects you can hold, display and share.
The opening scene of HEALTH's Dark Enough experience.
The opening scene of HEALTH's Dark Enough experience.

Our free Stylus player app will be available on iOS at public launch. We also have a functional Android version that we plan to get ready for public release late spring next year.

When a fan points their mobile device camera at a totem, the Stylus app plays back a music and interactive visual experience, also designed with the artist.

Each experience is unique in style and content. Some are game-like. Some are conceptual explorations. Others are both...and neither. All are direct expressions of the artist's creative vision.

Each totem experience is unique in style and content. This is an untouched real time capture of HEALTH's Dark Enough experience.
Each totem experience is unique in style and content. This is an untouched real time capture of HEALTH's Dark Enough experience.
Another untouched live shot of HEALTH's Dark Enough experience.
Another untouched live shot of HEALTH's Dark Enough experience.
Totem experiences can be incredibly detailed. These untouched real time shots were taken from a mobile camera about 4 inches away from the HEALTH Dark Enough totem.
Totem experiences can be incredibly detailed. These untouched real time shots were taken from a mobile camera about 4 inches away from the HEALTH Dark Enough totem.
Working with HEALTH to create a totem for their single, Dark Enough.
Working with HEALTH to create a totem for their single, Dark Enough.

1. MAPPING

When we partner with an artist we first provide a range of visual interpretations of a specific song, in the form of abstract 3D models. These models are based on both the artist's creative goals and the automated mapping of various musical attributes to physical and visual ones by Harmony, our custom audio-to-physical engine and parametric design software.

2. DESIGN

Using these models as a starting point, we work with the artist to design a custom totem that matches their creative intentions and visual aesthetic. We also collaborate to create an interactive visual experience which includes and represents the song. The creative choices and decisions made for each totem are saved and learned by our system, and used to improve our generated Mapping models for every collaboration that comes after.

3. PRODUCTION

Once both are complete, we 3D print the totem and encode it with the experience using Unity and Vuforia. The combined experience of physical, audio and visual can take nearly any linear, exploratory or other form of narrative the artist wants to create for their fans.

4. RELEASE

Fans who purchase the totem and download our free Stylus app can play back the music and interactive visuals on their mobile device, experiencing the artist's song through sound, sight and touch.

Our Harmony software learns the creative choices made by each artist, improving every collaboration that comes after.
Our Harmony software learns the creative choices made by each artist, improving every collaboration that comes after.

YACHT - "Music is by nature immaterial, but people need something to hold onto, to help make it feel concrete. Physical albums used to serve that purpose; the death of the physical album, in a way, opens up new possibilities beyond vinyl and acetate. We've always been interested in designing objects and experiences around our music, but REIFY's concept of a totem that embodies the sound itself is light-years ahead. We're early adopters."

HEALTH

mae - "Sometimes things aren't lost in translation, they are FOUND in translation. 100 years ago Wassily Kandinsky said that "The arts are encroaching one upon another, and from a proper use of this encroachment will rise the art that is truly monumental." Kandinsky used his paint to SHOW us music. Now, 100 years later, technology has given us the ability to SEE music in a new way yet again. REIFY is taking music beyond the realm of sound and into the realm of the multisensory aesthetic experience."

Tim Fain 

Ivy Ross, VP Google, Head of Glass - "I have been waiting to be able to not just live in rhythm, but to hold it in my hands. Reify ignites this new blending of the senses in a way that will provoke more questions then answers, which is the best part of our journey."

Jake Friedman, Manager/Co-Founder, We Are Free - "In this moment of 'on demand' everything, Reify has created a new physical format. And that format promises to return ritual and aura to recorded music. Who wouldn't be excited about that?"

Paste Magazine - "The swirling structures are artful representations that could just as easily be seen in your living room as in a museum."

Colossal - "Sound wave interpretations in your hands, as 3d-printed sculptures."

The Creator's Project - "Music becomes tactile and textured."

Bloomberg Business - "It's hard not to get excited about staring your favorite song right in the face."

The Wall Street Journal - "Shapes that can be printed and then played back with an app that divines the sound from a scan of the object made to represent it."

Teen Vogue - "How One Girl Turned Her Favorite Songs Into Sculptures with Computer Software"

The REIFY pins and stickers include an interactive visual you can play with the Stylus app!
The REIFY pins and stickers include an interactive visual you can play with the Stylus app!

We've been a self-funded full time project until now. We're beyond excited to be working with the musicians collaborating with us for this Kickstarter, and want to bring their totems and the Stylus app to music lovers everywhere.

We now have:

  • a beta version of our Harmony audio-to-physical design software
  • a beta version of the Stylus player app for iOS
  • tested fabrication processes and manufacturing partners
  • our first full totem + Stylus experience completed for HEALTH
  • a second wave of artists ready to release songs on totems in 2016

Use of funds: 

  • design & build totem + Stylus experiences for each Kickstarter artist 
  • custom package art for each artist's totem
  • back end development to get Stylus 1.0 ready for wide public release
  • hire a dedicated production manager for mass manufacturing and fulfillment

Allison and Kei met while residents of NEW INC, the New Museum of Contemporary Art’s design & technology incubator. They've been building the REIFY platform full time for the last 9 months.

Allison Wood
Allison Wood

Allison Wood is REIFY’s co-creator and CEO. She has a background in art, design and technology. After studying sociology at Mount Holyoke College she moved to NYC where she worked in fashion with a focus in accessories. Her love for design, architecture and human interaction led her to pursue an MFA in interior design at Pratt Institute and a second MFA in digital interactive art, to explore how technology influences and shapes physical space. She went on to work for acclaimed artist Jamie Zigelbaum where she developed and produced large scale interactive works. She was a collaborator on 2014 Design Miami/ Basel Commission and a participant in the first Digital Art Auction at Phillips. In 2013 Allison co-created and became the CEO of REIFY. This year she presented REIFY at TEDxTeen and SxSW.

Kei Gowda
Kei Gowda

Kei Gowda is REIFY’s main tech guy. Before joining REIFY he spent 20 years building stuff like verbal-to-visual chat clients, connected fitness wearables, motion-based desktop interfaces, haptic VR controllers, predictive healthcare systems and UFC.com.

UX Design & classical piano: Christine Walthall

Community Outreach & keeping it real: Ruby Lawrence

Production & perfect hair: Zoe Camina

Interns: Stephanie Oppenheim, Brittany Johns

CO-CREATORS + ADVISORS

Before meeting Kei at NEW INC Allison interned for Ara Katz and Jamie Zigelbaum. It was with them she explored the early concepts of REIFY, together developing foundational ideas on the relationships between form, meaning and digital synesthesia that have influenced her work every since. It was with their support and encouragement that Allison applied to NEW INC and committed to REIFY as her full time pursuit.

Jamie Zigelbaum - MIT Media Lab, Dark Matter, Midnight Commercial

Ara Katz - MIT Media Lab, SpringNYC, Beachmint

ADVISORS

Ivy Ross - VP at Google, Art.com, Gap Inc, Harvard Business School

Michael Moskowitz - Global Chief Curator at eBay, Bureau of Trade, IDEO

Alex Olwal Ph.D. - Google, MIT Media Lab, KTH Royal Institute of Tech

Jake Friedman - We Are Free, Lovepump United Records

CONTACT

Questions? Comments? Cool! We're a small team that answers every correspondence personally. Drop us a note on the comments page or email us at  kickstarter@reify.nyc. 

Risks and challenges

Sometimes the unexpected happens, and there are many things beyond our control. Suppliers may miss a deadline, a machine may start malfunctioning or a shipment can get lost. Those things can cause delays, Nevertheless, to minimize any setbacks and inconveniences, we are going to work with the most reliable suppliers, manufacturing plants and shipping agencies, to ensure you get your rewards by the intended delivery date.

DESIGN

The physical form for each artist's REIFY totem is designed by REIFY and that artist, using our custom software. The Stylus experiences for each totem are designed by REIFY, that artist and an digital artist versed in 3D motion graphics and working directly in Unity.

HEALTH's totem and full Stylus experience are complete and ready to move to production. We've begun initial concepting and collobration with some of the other Kickstarter artists.

Given the variable nature of any creative collaboration among multiple artists and designers, each full project may take different amounts of time and effort to reach production-ready designs. Potential delays to production could occur if design time extends past what we planned for.

MANUFACTURING

We're partnered with Voodoo manufacturing for 3D printed totems and a private bronze casting partner in NYC for the numbered edition totems.

The HEALTH totem's manufacturing process has been tested and confirmed. Optimizing for production of that totem at scale is currently underway. Fabrication testing and optimization for the other artist's totems will depend on the complexity of the final physical designs, materials, etc.

We're working closely with Voodoo and our bronze partner, and using our experience from our work with HEALTH, to predict and remedy any manufacturing challenges before we move to mass production. Potential production delays could happen if an artist's desired design proves a high effort to fabricate, needs to be reworked for predictable printing or casting, etc.

PACKAGING AND FULFILLMENT

Our totems are to be packaged and fulfilled from a dedicated location in Brooklyn. Our design, manufacturing and packaging facilities are all within 1 mile of each other. We have sufficient storage space to fulfill at scale.

We have a plan for fullment that requires a dedicated production management hire + knowing just what and where we're shipping all our rewards, in order to confirm our predications on effort and time for delivering rewards. Both will happen upon Kickstarter rewards successful funding our campaign.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    *THE VISUAL LANGUAGE INTERACTIVE SURVEY

    Help us crowd source a shared visual language for sound!

    You'll be signed up to participate in our visual language survey. Through this interactive survey you'll tell us how you experience and visualize sound.

    Your opinions, preferences and other data - along with everyone else who participates in the survey - will be entered into our system to teach it a crowdsourced view of what sound looks like.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    * REIFY FAN CLUB

    Welcome to the club!

    For your support we'll send you a REIFY band pin + a 5 pack of REIFY stickers, all encoded with our interactive REIFY logo!

    All visuals can be played back using the free REIFY STYLUS app.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    * REIFY SUPER FAN

    Tell 'em you're a member by rocking your exclusive REIFY t-shirt!

    Plus: REIFY band pin and 10 pack of REIFY stickers, all encoded with our interactive REIFY logo!

    All visuals can be played back using the free REIFY STYLUS app.

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    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    * SIGNED HEALTH VINYL

    Get your hands on a signed vinyl of HEALTH's new album DEATH MAGIC!

    Plus: REIFY band pin and 10 pack of REIFY stickers, all encoded with our interactive REIFY logo!

    Use the REIFY STYLUS app to playback visuals.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    * SIGNED HEALTH TOTEM: DARK ENOUGH

    One Totem of HEALTH's single DARK ENOUGH off their new album DEATH MAGIC. Designed and signed by the band!

    Plus: REIFY band pin and 10 pack of REIFY stickers, all encoded with our interactive REIFY logo!

    Use the REIFY STYLUS app to playback music and visuals.

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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    * SIGNED MAE TOTEM: ARTIST'S CHOICE

    One Totem of a mae single, to be selected by the band. Designed and signed by the band!

    We'll will get started on the Totem once this Kickstarter is funded.

    By backing this reward you guarantee mae will make a Totem, and get behind the scenes updates on their creative process!

    Plus: REIFY band pin and 10 pack of REIFY stickers, all encoded with our interactive REIFY logo!

    Use the REIFY STYLUS app to playback music and visuals.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    * SIGNED TIM FAIN TOTEM: ARTIST'S CHOICE

    One Totem of a Tim Fain's performance, to be selected by the artist. Designed and signed by Tim!

    Tim will choose the piece this fall and we'll will get started on the Totem once this Kickstarter is funded.

    By backing this reward you guarantee Tim will make a Totem, and get behind the scenes updates on his creative process!

    Plus: REIFY band pin and 10 pack of REIFY stickers, all encoded with our interactive REIFY logo!

    Use the REIFY STYLUS app to playback music and visuals.

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    * VINYL COLLECTORS : LOMA VISTA RECORDINGS SUBSCRIPTION

    Loma Vista Recordings will send you 12 vinyl records over the course of 12 months, starting with HEALTH's DEATH MAGIC.

    Fulfillment begins September 2015.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    * MULTI-SENSORY DINNER CO-HOSTED BY TIM FAIN, AND JACOB MARSHALL OF MAE

    You and 9 other Kickstarter backers will join Tim Fain and Jacob Marshall for curated, multi-sensory dining experience designed to touch each of your senses!

    Held in New York City, early this fall 2015.

    Travel and accommodation costs not included.

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    Pledge $1,250 or more About $1,250

    * NUMBERED EDITION BRONZE TOTEM:
    MAE, ARTIST'S CHOICE

    One numbered edition BRONZE cast totem of a mae single, to be selected by the band. Designed and signed by the band!

    We'll will get started on the Totem once this Kickstarter is funded.

    By backing this reward you guarantee mae will make a Totem, and get behind the scenes updates on their creative process!

    Plus: REIFY band pin and 10 pack of REIFY stickers, all encoded with our interactive REIFY logo!

    Use the REIFY STYLUS app to playback music and visuals.

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    Pledge $1,250 or more About $1,250

    * NUMBERED EDITION BRONZE TOTEM:
    TIM FAIN, ARTIST'S CHOICE

    One numbered edition BRONZE cast totem of a Tim Fain piece, to be selected by the artist. Designed and signed by Tim!

    We'll will get started on the Totem once this Kickstarter is funded.

    By backing this reward you guarantee Tim will make a Totem, and get behind the scenes updates on their creative process!

    Plus: REIFY band pin and 10 pack of REIFY stickers, all encoded with our interactive REIFY logo!

    Use the REIFY STYLUS app to playback music and visuals.

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    Pledge $1,250 or more About $1,250

    * NUMBERED EDITION BRONZE TOTEM:
    HEALTH - DARK ENOUGH

    One numbered edition BRONZE cast totem of HEALTH's single DARK ENOUGH off their new album DEATH MAGIC. Designed and signed by the band!

    Plus: REIFY band pin and 10 pack of REIFY stickers, all encoded with our interactive REIFY logo!

    Use the REIFY STYLUS app to playback music and visuals.

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    Pledge $10,000 About $10,000

    * EARLY ADOPTER COLLABORATION

    Work directly with our team to create a totem based on your own music, using the REIFY platform!

    Includes: totem & interactive experience design + 25 PLA prints of same totem.

    Additional prints or bronze casts available for small batch order or full production run of your totem, at additional cost.

    Full rights to music selection should be owned or licensed by backer.

    Use the REIFY STYLUS app to playback the music and visuals.

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Funding period

- (30 days)