Human harp

Creating music through movement. An exploration of the movitian as an interactive musical installation on the Brooklyn bridge, NY. 

concept

Human harp is based on the concept of body extensions, prosthesis and exoskeletons. By studying the movement of the body, we found suitable connection points at which we strung musical ropes to the dancer.The string connection to the body is mediated through a body extension that acts as an architectural structure supported by the body. A dancer trained to use the harp can play it through expressive movement guided by the body-extension. Through body storming and prototyping we realized that the spine was the most interesting part of the body to work on, since every dancer depends a lot on its movement. Our focus was to ensure that the holster fitted perfectly and comfortably onto the dancers body so that she/he could move freely.

Process

We began to explore forms and shapes based on the dancers movements and crafted hand stitched prosthetics that could fit comfortably on the dancer. Each musical node was connected via magnets that would plug into the prothetic suit of the dancer and generate music through her movement. The strings of the node were connected to a circular structure which the dancer attached to the bridge. By pulling this string the dancer would pull a musical wheel within the structure that changed tunes according to the tension on the string. These connections put together created the aesthetics of a harp on the Brooklyn bridge, imitating it's architecture.

IMPACT

This design was further implemented into the Human Harp project by artist Di Mainstone. The project has been showcased and exhibited in Brooklyn New York and London. For more information please visit:www.humanharp.org

Advisors: David Gauthier, Di Mainstone