Project 1 Generative Study Process

This generative study aims to using magnets to manipulate natural objects to create spontaneous and random sounds

The first trial was done using corals. The magnets were initially hanging side by side however the attraction was too strong which did not cause movement, and I had to move the hold the magnet instead to manipulate the hanging magnet.

Second structure using an acrylic rod and wood.

The current trials were constructed individually, and from here on I will experiment with joining the structures together, as using other objects like stone and charcoal.

One Reply to “Project 1 Generative Study Process”

  1. Naomi, these initial trials point to three important aspects: mechanical, sonic, and elaboration as you progress with this study, and possibly elaboration through the second generative artwork assignment (if you decide to continue expanding this work).

    With the mechanical, you need to find the most effective suspension materials (strings), and the ways to suspend the objects and magnets, which will probably depend on the character of individual objects you choose.
    You need to do some brainstorming and experimentation for this.

    Sonic qualities of the objects you select are, of course, crucial, just like in regular chimes.
    This requires experimentation as well, but you can aid it by doing some research on the sonic characteristics of various objects that you can and would be interested to use.

    For elaboration, one possibility may be to combine several suspensions (objects with magnets), each with its own magnet, carefully balanced into a static configuration which can be generatively disrupted by slightly moving one of the suspensions or by introducing another magnet into the structure.

    Another possibility, perhaps for further elaboration, would be to use electromagnet(s) whose magnetic strength can be varied by the electric current which itself can be varied by one or more input parameters – analog or digital. With such unstable system as with several plain magnets, one electromagnet is enough for creating interesting disruptions.
    Electromagnetic “signal”, for example in electromagnets used in electric guitars, is rich and can produce multilayered outcome.
    If you want to follow this idea, you can start with Wikipedia article (, and you should also talk with Vladimir on Thursday because he has been experimenting with electromagnets a lot.

    I hope this helps.

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