The Artistic Play of Spatial Organization: Spatial Attributes, Scene Analysis and Auditory Spatial Schemata

  • Gary S. Kendall
  • Mauricio Ardila
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 4969)


Electroacoustic music lacks a definitive vocabulary for describing its spatiality. Not only does it lack a vocabulary for describing the spatial attributes of individual sound sources, it lacks a vocabulary for describing how these attributes participate in artistic expression. Following work by Rumsey, the definition of spatial attributes is examined in the broader context of auditory scene analysis. A limited number of spatial attributes are found to be adequate to characterize the individual levels of organization nested within the auditory scene. These levels are then viewed in relationship to auditory spatial schemata, the recurrent patterns by which listeners understand the behavior of sound in space. In electroacoustic music the interrelationship of spatial attributes and spatial schemata is often engaged in a play of perceptual grouping that blurs and confounds distinctions like source and ensemble. Our ability to describe and categorize these complex interactions depends on having clear concepts and terminology.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gary S. Kendall
    • 1
  • Mauricio Ardila
    • 2
  1. 1.Music Technology ProgramNorthwestern UniversityEvanstonUSA
  2. 2.Audio Arts and Acoustics DepartmentColumbia College ChicagoChicagoUSA

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