Synaesthetic Traces: Digital Acquisition of Musical Shapes

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingPoster abstract


In this paper we describe two projects aiming to shed light on the notion of shape, a concept widely used by musicians to refer to various musical characteristics but one that has so far been almost entirely neglected by the research community. Project 1 is a study examining how musicians and non-musicians represent sound visually, making use of an electronic graphics tablet and tailored capturing software to gain insight into visualised musical shapes and the processes that produce that visualization. Project 2 aims to measure people’s shaped responses to music as expressed through hand, arm and whole body movements using Microsoft’s® Kinect technology and a Wii remote controller. The digitally acquired data and methodologically advanced analyses from both projects have already influenced and will continue to inform other, humanities- and social science-driven projects, to the same extent as the latter have enhanced the progress of the former. We are convinced that the overarching investigation of ‘Shaping music in performance’ can only benefit from such a collaboration.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2nd Supporting Digital Humanities Conference
Subtitle of host publication‘Answering the unaskable’
PublisherUniversity of Copenhagen
Publication statusPublished - 2011


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