When it comes to music we’re used to moving our body to dance to it (however badly), but not so much when it comes to creating it. But with the gesture-based Dodecaudion—shaped like a dodecahedron—hand and body movements are used to generate the sounds, rather than just respond to them.
The open source project, from Polish new media art collective panGenerator, uses infrared distance sensors, Arduino, Bluetooth, Processing, OSC, and a synthesizer to convert the user’s hand and body movements into music. It can also be used to create visuals along with the sounds, turning the user into some kind of magical audiovisual conjurer.
But the project is more than just an experimental AV instrument, instead the device turns the sometimes staid act of electronic music making into a performance art. Jakub Koźniewski, from panGenerator, explains this in the TEDTalk below, which starts with a performance from Madie Bovska. He explains that the collective wanted the gestures to be just as important as the music they created, saying: “The main concept, the key idea behind this project, was to create a new means of expression in electronic live music.”