Ethan Miller

Unless otherwise noted, all work licensed under : Creative Commons License


May, 2007

In collaboration with:

Surface is an exploration of surface and location mediated through both video imagery and audio feedback. It consists of a series of macro photos of urban surfaces in downtown San Jose. The location of each surface is cataloged with latitude and longitude data (the mapped images are visible on this custom Google map). Organic materials are also collected from the urban environment (rocks, seed pods, branches, etc.) and form an interface into the exploration of place and surface. A platform is installed in the exhibition space where the collected materials are placed. A contact microphone is used to detect vibrations caused by tactile interactions with the organic material. The vibrations are amplified into an audio signal, which is broadcast into the space. Software algorithms detect changes in pitch and amplitude in the signal and use the data for two purposes. Short segments of audio input are recorded and looped, forming a rhythmic history of the interactions with the piece. In addition, the waveform creates a curve that slowly moves up the image, and reveals the next image in the sequence.


  • Surface video projection
  • Surface interactive table and projection