Camera Lucida is an interactive “sonic observatory” that directly converts sound waves into light by employing a phenomenon called sonoluminescence. The project was conceived both as an artwork and as a musical instrument that allows its player to see and shape sounds while moving through space.
The continually evolving light sculpture allows one to see sound moving through space – at the meeting point of acoustics and optics. Using sonoluminescence, sound waves are directly converted into light inside a glass chamber filled with gas-infused liquid. After adapting to the darkness surrounding the installation, one can gradually perceive the highly detailed shapes and movements of multiple sound sources.
So far, the only way to view sonoluminescence was in a highly specialized sonochemical laboratory. Camera Lucida presents the first opportunity for people outside the scientific community to experience this rare phenomenon.
by Evelina Domnitch and Dmitry Gelfand
Video on the webpage.