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Crystal Unclear: Composition III Tourmaline
Algorithmic Composition
Sound piece

Composition III Tourmaline is an algorithmic composition and it is part of a broader idea called “Crystal Unclear”. 

This project seeks to explore the capacity of piezoelectricity present in some crystals to create musical and algorithmic compositions. In this round, it is specifically focused on tourmaline as interface and source. Through experimentation with raw materials, it attempts to create musical pieces that somehow confront the “natural” (crystals) with the mechanistic (algorithmic/software). 

Video documentation: Tourmaline + software

The set up consist in a circuit connected to an Arduino UNO where a tourmaline stone is attached at one end. Then, a Processing software maps the electrical signals from the crystal when it is touched. Rather than just noticing and showing the interference of the human presence, the software is programmed to calculate a number of formulas in order to create the final composition.


This project was developed in the course Transient Sensors and the Eternal Algorithmic Composition in @digitalmediabremen and it uses Wellen Library for Processing developed by Dennis Paul.

Please check further information (code, process photos, etc) on my Github account.

Processing software: plot + Wellen Library
Thanks to
Prof. Dennis Paul for conceptual support and Antonio Hofmeister for his technical assistance.