Sound Sensitivity Part 1 by Matthew J. Moran

COURSE: Art 699: Independent Study with Professor Yeohyun Ahn

MEDIUM: Video/Animation, Code Art, Audio, Data Visualization

“Sound Sensitivity Part 1” is a generative drawing that is sound responsive. It was made with the Processing computer graphics language. The entire project is made with the standard libraries provided by Processing and doesn’t utilize any other external libraries or resources. The tunnel-like effect is generated through the composition of several different math and computer graphic concepts. The outlines are splines utilizing a shape generated from several vertex curves. The curves angles, movement and randomness are created by using linear interpolation, Perlin noise and trigonometry functions. Finally, the change in pace is made possible by analyzing the fast Fourier transformation created from the user’s microphone input. Combing all these smaller components together is what creates the sound interactive experience made possible by Processing.

“Sound Sensitivity Part 1” is a generative piece of art that visualizes the experience of living with a sensitivity to sound. It is an interactive and immersive installation that responds to the volume of the surrounding sound, creating subtle to large changes in the pacing of the piece based on the environment’s volume. “Sound Sensitivity Part 1” tries to expose its audience to the anxiety-inducing experience of being in loud spaces. It also brings light to the peace and control that is overlooked in a quiet environment. “Sound Sensitivity Part 1” can explore these two opposite experiences by showing the ongoing tension between chaos and control. The piece is also rendered in black and white to reflect the stark contrast between the order of the piece and the unpredictable nature of the sound it responds to. With the combination of art and technology, “Sound Sensitivity Part 1” can create a unique, one-of-a-kind and deeply personal experience for its audience. It invites the viewer to rethink their own relationship with sound, the impact that sound has on the environment around them and their emotional and physical well-being.