The high-school students participating in the “Art & Science” contest participated in at least two lectures on particle physics and the LHC experiments before being asked to start designing their artwork. One of the challenges was to “think outside the box” and not feel constrained by what they could imagine was expected from them: they could conceive paintings and sculptures, of course (most of the groups ended up creating sculptures), but other creations were possible: photographs, performances, videos, etcetera.
Among the few groups who proposed something original from the standpoint of the kind of “means of communication” is one from Liceo “Marco Foscarini” composed by Martina Ciampi and Elena Murer. They were inspired by the graphs used by physicists to report their data in the form of histograms – such as the one of the Higgs boson discovery shown on the right. Since they are musicians, they decided to “read” those complicated graphs as if they were partitures of music.
The result is a quite interesting collection of melodies: the number of events collected in each bin of a distribution get translated in a one-to-one map to sounds, and the artists become executors of these cyphers.
The idea turns out to be quite original (something similar, music extracted from raw data, was attempted at CERN by some researchers, but this is different) and the result is a very interesting video. The students associated to their sounds some computer-generated images showing a graphical dance of particles. Some of the effects are beautiful and the result is quite commendable. Check it out for yourself below…