Arctic Fracture

A realtime visualization of Strindberg's Origins/Glades at Drums Downtown V

This is the first real-time visualization system created. It was designed to visualize six percussionists performing Ursprung/glantor or Origins/Glades by Henrik Strindberg. The imagery was inspired by frozen water droplets and icicle formations. The shapes were also inspired by the sound quality of the percussion instruments which exemplified a strong, sharp attack followed by a relatively quick decay. Each percussionist was represented by a different visual element. Icicles, splashes of frozen water, and crescent shapes resembling frost on a window are just some of the visual elements associated with each performing member of the ensemble.

This video demonstrates the visualization system reacting to a piano piece. Various frequencies are visualized by different elements so lower piano notes will cause different elements to react when compared to higher piano notes.


Drums Downtown V, Columbus, OH, February 2008
PASIC 2008, Austin, TX, October 2008
See What You Feel: A Study in the Visual Extension of Music, SIGGRAPH 2009, New Orleans, LA, August 2009
Skylab/Ignition 3.0, Columbus, OH, May 2010

Some examples of the many visual elements that intertwine together with the music.

Drums Downtown V performance in action.

Another example of all the arctic elements. This one prominently features the crescent frost shapes.