The title of the art installation is Phasescope
A phasescope (or goniometer) plots an audio signal on a two-dimensional area by displaying the amplitude of one audio channel on the x-axis, and the other channel on the y-axis.
We achieved this by sending audio signals into two motors, which rotate two small mirrors. A laser shines onto the two mirrors, one steering the beam along the horizontal, the other on the vertical axis.
When sending a simple sine wave into both channels, the scope will display a straight line, as the amplitudes of the x and y-axis increase and decrease in synchrony. In this case, only the relative volume of the signal is visualized.
If we now delay the signal in one of the channels by a fixed number of milliseconds, we get a very different result. As one channel lags behind the other, the laser beam no longer moves in a straight line, but in an oval shape. The exact shape of this oval depends on the frequency of the sine wave.
With more complex audio from an analogue synthesizer, the phasescope will create intricate shapes and patterns, created by the interferences between different wave shapes and frequencies.
Read more about the project here.
The work is created by Idil Safi (Biomedical Sciences), Erik Stricker Schall (Biomedical Sciences), Anton Donle (Computer Science), and funded by the VU Network Institute.
It is placed at the first floor of the NU building. Come by to see it!