A record player that plays slices of wood

Year ring data is translated into music, 2011.
Modified turntable, computer, vvvv, camera, acrylic glass, veneer, approx. 90x50x50 cm.

A tree’s year rings are analysed for their strength, thickness and rate of growth. This data serves as basis for a generative process that outputs piano music. It is mapped to a scale which is again defined by the overall appearance of the wood (ranging from dark to light and from strong texture to light texture). The foundation for the music is certainly found in the defined ruleset of programming and hardware setup, but the data acquired from every tree interprets this ruleset very differently.

“…the first one is a more minimalistic fir tree, the second an ash tree with a rather complex texture. the sounds are excerpts of these records. one “track” is 4:30, that is the time it takes the motor to move the tonearm from the rim to the center of the record. sometimes the camera is still a bit glitchy so it is missing to recognise some rings. if you put other woods on it the change in sound is even more dramatic, for example with dark walnut wood.”


Limited edition of 12″ vinyl records. One side is an application of actual veneer, the same kind which is used in ‘Years’, the other side is a musical score generated from said veneer by the ‘Years’ piece. These recordings are each unique pieces of music and come with their corresponding source material, the wood, applied to the other (B) side of the vinyl record. There is an edition of 10 of these completely unique records. Used woods include pear, ash, beech, birch, walnut, oak and maple.