At the Intersection of Music and Data, Visualizing a Drummer's Movements

By Kasia Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg

Bartek Szlachcic, an audiovisual artist based in Poland, used motion capture software to trace his drumsticks in space during a performance, creating this mesmerizing video. Portrait of a Ghost Drummer is a part of the artist's ongoing investigation of "the interdependence between sound, video, human senses and issues of data storage," a solo project named Odaibe.

Szlachcic describes the creative development of the piece in his artist's statement: 

Portrait of a Ghost Drummer expands the understanding of a drummer's activity from purely auditory experience to spontaneous visual performance. From a technical point of view, motion trajectory was captured on a Vicon MX system, then raw CSV files were translated into visual language in a 3D environment. My self-developed technique is inspired by areas such as drumming notation, action painting, choreography, Japanese calligraphy and 3D digital drawing.


Some images of the process of creating Ghost Drummer, courtesy of the artist

Another work by Szlachcic, Odaibe: Midnight Train, creates an interaction between live performance and video projection. 

For more work by Bartek Szlachcic, see http://www.odaibe.com/.

Via FastCo.Design

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/video/archive/2012/02/at-the-intersection-of-music-and-data-visualizing-a-drummers-movements/252506/