WHISPERS: An Interactive Sound Installation

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Whispers is about exploring how to transform a static building into a dynamic space, by integrating music and architecture. People’s presence in space and their movements and interactions with the space can lead to the creation of both individualized experiences with the sound as well as a collected representation of the sounds.

This offers unique ways to capture occupants presence as they make their way through a building. When walking alongside the colonnade in the Storrs Salon, occupants can begin to hear “whispers” of low volumed sounds responding to their presence. Here, architectural elements are the instruments and the occupants are the musicians.

This system uses a sensor-speaker set at each column. The sensors take the distance from person interacting with the column and then translates that distance to musical notes and variations through coding with microcontrollers. [1] 

The trouble becomes how to create a “controlled chaos”. We used a randomizer, a change in measured delays, and a translation from one octave to another while remaining to notes all in the same key of C. With this method we found consistency while also allowing for chaos and the unexpected to occur.