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I can play your profile … I wonder how your nose will sound.” (László Moholy-Nagy)

Shrewd new sound sculpture by rising star Lyota Yagi. You can see+hear them in revolutionary action here. Balls of cassette on modified cassette players. Yagi’s work often brings him back to the tangibility of analog sound technologies: I included his melting ice ‘vinyl’ records in last year’s Big In Japan exhibitions in Australia, and since then he has also located audio information in the microgrooves of human fingerprints. The Sound Spheres were recently included in a group show in Budapest, where Yagi made this eight minute video condensing seven days.

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And, here’s what Wikipedia has on the Musica Universalis:

The Music of the Spheres incorporates the metaphysical principle that mathematical relationships express qualities or ‘tones’ of energy which manifest in numbers, visual angles, shapes and sounds – all connected within a pattern of proportion. Pythagoras first identified that the pitch of a musical note is in proportion to the length of the string that produces it, and that intervals between harmonious sound frequencies form simple numerical ratios.

In a theory known as the Harmony of the Spheres, Pythagoras proposed that the Sun, Moon and planets all emit their own unique hum based on their orbital revolution, and that the quality of life on Earth reflects the tenor of celestial sounds which are physically imperceptible to the human ear.

In the 17th century, Johannes Kepler, also influenced by arguments in Ptolemy’s Optics and Harmonica, compiled his Harmonices Mundi (’Harmony of the World’), which presented his own analysis of optical perceptions, geometrical shapes, musical consonances and planetary harmonies. According to Kepler, the connection between geometry (and sacred geometry), cosmology, astrology, harmonics, and music is through musica universalis.

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Posted by a 9:56 AM, September 3rd, 2011 3 comments


  1. Brilliant

    Comment by Alida — September 9, 2011 @ 8:28 pm
  2. This is so good. Can any one tell me are these balls actually cast from cassette tapes or are they objects designed to play cassettes?

    Comment by Jhogan — September 13, 2011 @ 8:18 pm
  3. Hey Jesse. It is regular tape wrapped around balls. I saw some at the Yokohama Triennale this week, they’re really great. Linear time made circular. Amelia

    Comment by admin — September 17, 2011 @ 10:35 am

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