Tim Murray-Browne explodes one moment of music into an interactive sound sculpture in his latest project, Anamorphic Composition No. 1. The artist and creative coder's installation is inspired by the concept of anamorphosis, the visual phenomenon where a 3D form reveals a hidden 2D image when viewed from a very particular angle. In the installation, a 3D camera tracks a person’s head movements through space. This position data is visualized in software as a circle which can intersect any number of pieces of music, represented as lines and circles.
“Anamorphic Composition No. 1 is a musical work composed in space rather than time,” Murray-Browne explains to The Creators Project. “I froze a single moment of music and broke it into fragments, and spread these through space like shards shooting past your head. You listen to the piece by actively moving your head to find these different sounds.”
In his previous work, Murray-Browne has explored similar intersections between sound and movement. Inspired by Werner Herzog’s documentary Cave of Forgotten Dreams, Murray-Browne created The Cave of Sounds, in which eight artists created experimental instruments. And in The Floating World, the artist programmed a sound installation that dancer Jan Lee interacted with in 3D.
Similarly, Anamorphic Composition No. 1 is not just an audiovisual installation. It must be explored through both the ear and the body. The more one moves one's head, the more sounds get triggered, so that the body's movement creates a curious visual element—the person interacting with the sound sculpture—that could possibly even be choreographed to create something physically dynamic.
“Like a sculpture, you can't see the whole thing at once, you have to move around,” Murray-Browne says. “But in a few places where the musical fragments meet you find these sweet spots, like an echo of the harmony.”