Mark Trayle

Mark Trayle – Zephyrs


Zephyrs plays with both material and acoustic phenomena. In the 17th century the English physicist Robert Hooke discovered that particles on a vibrating surface will form nodal patterns related to the frequency of sound propagating through that surface. Similarly, closely tuned high frequency sound waves will create patterns in an acoustic space. In Zephyrs  gold glitter is periodically deposited on a small piezoelectric disc. High frequency square waves play through the disc causing the glitter to form patterns that emerge, change, and disappear. Sometimes the glitter flies off the disc. The high frequency waves (and their lower frequency auxiliary tones) also create patterns of varying amplitudes and frequencies in the acoustic space.

Shortly after I finished a prototype for the piece I realized that it reminded me of a Tibetan Buddhist offering practice. Gold, gemstones, and other precious materials are placed on a golden plate in the form of a mandala, then offered to one’s guru and other teachers past and present. Please consider this an offering for your eyes and ears.

Mark Trayle works in a variety of media including live electronic music, installations, improvisation, and compositions for chamber ensembles. Performances and exhibitions include Ars Electronica, t-u-b-e (Munich), DEAF (Rotterdam), Resistance Fluctuations (LA), net_condition (ZKM Karlsruhe), Sea and Spacce (LA), Pro Musica Nova, Format5 (Berlin), Inventionen (Berlin), and Resonant Forms (LA). His music has been performed by Champs D’Action, Ensemble Zwischentoene, Kammerensemble Neue Musik Berlin, and Ensemble Mosaik. Recent collaborators include Muhal Richard Abrams, David Behrman, Jason Kahn, Christian Kesten, Toshimaru Nakamura, Andrea Neumann & Sabine Ercklentz, Wadada Leo Smith, and The Hub.

Zephyrs was installed in The WaveCave from September 29th to October 9th, 2014.