STELLAGE VAN PYTHAGORAS
In his day, Pythagoras was working on defining musical notes mathematically. Among other things, he discovered that the tones produced by a string with length X (10, for example) and a string with a length of 2X (two times 10, in this example) are divided by one octave exactly. He connected the fields of mathematics with musical notes. This theory has been the starting point for the work “Stellage van Pythagoras”
The triangle which is suspended within the construction has the proportions of a 3,4,5 triangle. This is the Pythagorean Theorem as it is still used today, for instance in construction, in order to calculate or verify the dimensions of right-angled triangles. I have divided all sides of the triangle by two. This means that the two lengths along the right angle are 1,5m and 2m, and that the diagonal side has a length of 2,5m.
The triangle is made of steel, and weighs 140kg. The mass of the triangle creates a strong tension in the fourteen wires with which the triangle is suspended. Because of the diagonally placed, steel wire which is fastened behind the other wires, their resonant lengths varies, meaning that they create different tones when struck. This works according to the same principle as a guitar bridge. The second string and the second-to-last string differ exactly with a factor of 2, which means that the tones they produce are exactly one octave apart, according to Pythagoras’ theory. Because knots are weak points, I chose not to use these. This means that the wire at the leftmost side begins on a tuning pin of a piano. From there, it leads upwards via the “bridge” to a pulley, to another pulley above the triangle, and then it leads down again, ending tied up in a loop right above the triangle. It then goes through this loop, and up again through the triangle. It then wraps around the wire than came from above, forms the loop, and then descends again through the triangle. Then the wire goes up again and passes through the loop a second time, back to the pulley above the triangle. From this pulley, the wire leads to the pulley on the right and then leads over the bridge to the tuning pins again. As so it turns out that there are not 14 strings, but 7.