A rough edit of documentation from the Cymatic Adufe at MUDE for my submission to Seeing Sound 3.
The Cymatic Adufe is an installation piece for a gallery setting based on the phenomenon of stationary waves - a technological, sculptural, sound-based, generative, audiovisual artwork that explores the rich vocal and musical tradition of the Idanha a Nova region of central Portugal. The work investigates the interplay between sounds and images, materials and forms emblematic of rural life. It was last exhibited at MUDE: Museu Do Design E Da Moda, Lisbon, May-September ’13 as part of the 21st Century Rural Museum exhibition.
In May 2012, Lewis travelled to Monsanto, a small, mountain top village in rural Portugal and spent time experiencing the local culture. He was particularly struck by the Adufeiras do Monsanto, a group of mostly elderly women from the village who celebrated their traditional culture by performing a repertoire of traditional folk songs in brightly coloured costumes using just voice accompanied by rhythms played on an adufe - a square-framed hand drum of Arabic origin.
The work deploys Cymatics to visualise the traditional Portuguese folk melody of the Senhora do Almortão as dynamic and shifting patterns on the surface of an adufe. Simultaneously projected onto the top of the drum, superimposing on and augmenting these natural cymatics forms, are digital versions of geometric patterns often found in rural Portuguese decorative design and architectural elements - generated using a sound responsive adaptation of the Superformula, a generic geometric transformation equation first proposed by Johan Gielis that encompasses a wide range forms found in nature.