Musical Interfaces

Interactive sound sculptures and wierd electronic devices

I like to build things. Using my hands to create something whimsical by combining physical materials with my knowledge and skill of interactive media and programming is a fascination I discovered as a graduate student at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program. My projects don’t always come out the way I anticipate, but that’s not always a bad thing. Part of this work is an experiment in randomness. I believe that something is interesting if it doesn’t always act as predicted, or if it incorporates an element of surprise. By giving up some of the control and allowing interesting accidents to happen, I can sometimes come up with something exciting, if it doesn’t result in a dreaded short circuit.

Most museum or art gallery attendees are not prepared to interact with the art. I find that children have no fear when it comes to interacting with my art pieces. They seem to understand how to play with them.

Mechanical Wind-up Drawing Machines

These ‘drawing machines’ are totally mechanical. They have offset wind-up up motors which makes them change direction in an unpredictable way. No electronics! Here’s a perfect example of how non-linearities can create complex motion from otherwise simple forces.

Musical Flowerpot


Totally analog. A flowerpot with three squeezable sound-producing blobs. When squeezed, they make little screaming sounds. This piece can be entirely self-contained, powered with a 9-volt battery or it can be hooked up to effects and amplified.

555 Timer Chips, Force-sensitive resistors

Wind Music


Turn the fans on and listen to the music made by wind blowing the sensors. As the sensors bend, the sounds change. Fans are mounted on flexible snakes and can be moved around. Sound is generated by a midi synth module. This piece was constructed mostly from discarded items.

Piezo vibration sensors, Microchip Pic Microcontroller, external midi synth module

Musical Mango


A metallic musical device constructed from lighting fixture parts. Squeeze the mango and hear the music- the sounds will change depending on how hard and where you squeeze.

Midi synth module, Force-sensitive resistors, Microchip Pic Microcontroller

Dorkbot NYC

Dorkbot NYC presentation

Presentation & Demo
An audience member participates

Check out the Dorkbot-NYC website

Dancing Machine

A jittering, swaying sculpture mounted on springs. Wind it up and listen! It responds to vibration, so the more it wiggles, the more intense it sounds..

Piezo vibration sensors, key-wound toy motor, external midi synth