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Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL

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Sound Space Modulator

Sound Space Modulator

Sound Space Modulator is a machine that uses sound and motion to convey the same narrative as a musical score or performance. It manifests the mechanics of musical emotion to generate and break musical conventions and expectations.

In this project, we have chosen the emotional overload of suspense translated into unpredictable outcomes as the emotion of our project experience. We used the visual effects, narrative and sound methods that are frequently used in suspense films to develop a sense of suspense to design an interactive musical performance narrative machine. A study shows that visual forms of suspense narrative can use sound as the primary means of breaking the sense of anticipation in suspense. Therefore, we disassociated the visible from the cognitive sound effects, replacing the original physical sound, adjusting the frequency of the sound and creating suspenseful sound techniques to achieve an incredible sound experience.

We started the design by using the visual tension created by a ball on the edge. The ball became the protagonist of the installation, and by designing different paths of ball movement and mechanical levels, we created a visual experience of danger and the unknown. At the same time, the sound matched the mechanical movement in creating an installation performance with a sense of suspense. Guests could choose their ball at any time, place it at the starting point of the installation and observe its behaviour in its path with the different sensations that the sound brings to them. From the installation, the viewer would experience suspense that repeats itself multiple times through sight, sound and a series of unexpected intrigues. This is a small installation performance. The audience could try out the interaction several times, and the outcome of the exchange would vary in order to generate different feelings each time. We expect the installation to be a device that can manipulate people’s moods.





Key References:

Psycho. (1960). Directed by Alfred Hitchcock.America: Shamley Productions.

Ortony, A., Clore, G. L. and Collins, A. (1988). “Reactions to Events: II.” in the Cognitive Structure of Emotions. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 109-133.

Where is Everybody? (1959). Directed by Robert Stevens. CBS.

Langer, Hancock and D. Scott. (2014). Suspenseful design: Engaging emotionally with complex application applications through compelling narratives.

Kurio. (2017).Cirque Du Soleil.