A sound installation by Lee Weisert and Jonathon Kirk.
"Granular Wall" incorporates concepts and strategies from fluid dynamics, complexity theory, robotics, digital synthesis, visual art, and sculpture to create an arresting and direct engagement with the beauty of physical and sonic motion. A 4' x 4' custom tank is filled with water and several thousand neutrally-buoyant, fluorescent, “microspheres,” each only a half a millimeter in diameter. Spiraling eddies and colliding cross-currents fill the visual field of the viewer, resulting in a hypnotic, immersive, and dynamically-evolving visual experience.
The fluid motion within the tank is driven by several computer-controlled jets mounted to the inside of the tank. The locations and directions of the jets are precisely chosen to allow for a wide range of motion types, from oscillating waves, to swirling vortices, to chaotic flurries. Accompanying the visual elements of the installation is a spatialized musical soundscape, generated in real-time through the use of motion tracking technology. The microspheres are represented digital synthesis pulses, which pan dynamically and rise and fall in pitch in a manner analogous to the motions of the spheres in the tank.