Creating Graphical Metaphors of Music with the Alma Environment

Alain Bonardi

Université Paris IV-Sorbonne
5, impasse du Débarcadère - 78000 Versailles

Francis Rousseaux

Université de Reims
20, rue de Condé - 75006 Paris


In this paper we present our research in the field of graphical metaphors of music structures and data and especially describe the Alma environment we have developed. The general idea is to split the image generation in two levels, including correspondences between musical objects and graphical elements and music to image counterpoint. We then describe the current Alma implementation. It is possible to vary the level of musical representation required. Moreover, going through three dimensional objects at the pace of music enables active links, either between the different voices of a piece or between different pieces. There are various possible applications for Alma, from music analysis to multimedia design or composition.