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Having decomposed the two pieces into fundamental structural elements, my analysis aimed to directly connect “music code” to a specific visual element in an “A to B” translation method. However, I found it not worthwhile to connect specific music structures with specific visual outcomes because I felt like that took away from the imaginative aspect of the project and that the amount of variation possible would require I either make more general what I treat as component structure or make so many different options that the pairing might equally well be done randomly. Building off of Klee’s notes on direction of movement and the saturation of arpeggios throughout the fugue I chose to connect the motion of objects depicted with the relative pitches in the music. My space of visual translation was divided into top and bottom half, corresponding to the first and second voices of the fugue. This would allow the translation to flow according to the music and reveal visually as much simultaneously as the fugue does. Furthermore, seeing both sections at once would allow the viewer to follow the flow of the subject from top to bottom voice. I visually translated the first four measures of the fugue, with the eighth note being the core unit of time measurement. This means that each eighth note corresponds to one frame in the translation sequence. In the animation of the sequence, I made each frame equal to 0.3 seconds, which is a breath slower than the tempo in most recordings of the fugue. A big consideration was whether to have the animation include the appropriately slowed music as well or whether, following more in Klee’s habit of listening first and then separately painting, have the visual translation I’m creating be presented separately. I opted with the latter.

My visual translation mechanism, set up for public display at the showcase, defers any notion of stage setting. This choice too was in tune with Klee’s mindset: “Klee was not interested in the theatrical productions at the Bauhaus.” The device on which my animation could be viewed was placed on a music stand, to indicate and fit its original context. Additionally, Klee would have approached the stand just as viewers had at the showcase to warm up before painting. Similarly, viewing the animation I made is a warm up for appreciating and understanding the transfer of musical reception into visual conception.

Finally, certain aspects of my project are left open for even further development. I want to develop a more general instruction oriented mechanism that is able to recognize sound patterns based on relative pitch to generate fast moving objects on screen in real time. Technology like Shazam or Siri are able to listen to a given song and identify it based on a short excerpt but this recognition process only works for select produced songs. A violin concerto recorded by the New York Philharmonic for example would be correctly identified, whereas the same concerto played by someone on the violin at home would not. My next iteration of the visual translation mechanism would contain all Bach fugues, for example, categorized by unique 5-10 opening notes. A tuner would register the live notes played on the instrument and then match the heard note combination with one in the database. This would inform my mechanism which visualization patterns to use for the rest of the piece and the pace would adapt to the speed of the instrument - measured by the time elapsed per bar.

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