Ptarmigan is no longer operating in Helsinki.

Ptarmigan existed as a project space in Vallila from 2009-2011 and a mobile curatorial/creative platform until 2014. We no longer exist as an organised collective, but this website will continue to serve as an archive of the activities produced as/at Ptarmigan during these years.

Aeolian artifacts : Pulsar Kites intervention
working group : sound art : physical computing : wind and sky
22 August, 2013 00:00 - 24 August, 2013 00:00 12:00 - 18:00 (may vary slightly)
Featuring artist: Juan Carlos Duarte Regino

Aeolian artifacts is a collaborative workshop/working group to build wind-driven sonic artifacts.

This event aims to create an installation of sonic objects which respond to wind force to produce sound. These sonic objects will combine electronic and mechanical techniques, each offering different possibilities of expression and dynamics to consider.

The sonic intervention will occur in an open space in Tallinn, as a performance/installation where the participants will present their resulting instruments to create an improvised soundscape driven by wind.

The foundation of the workshop is based on the Pulsar Kite project by current Ptarmigan artist-in-residence Juan Duarte, which combines physical computing and real-time sound processing. In order to explore innovative ways to develop this idea, it is encouraged to deconstruct this working principle to find alternative methods of interaction with the networks of sensors and objects that can integrate to the Aeolian instruments context.

The result aims to combine both instruments in a intervention / performance based on the sound sources: two kinds of kites, both 1) physical modulators (hardware/software means), and 2) mechanical sound generators (whistling or rattling mechanisms).


5-10 persons

What you need to know:
Some coding and or hardware hacking experience can be useful, though not necessary - Juan can give tutoring to learn the basics of combining Arduino (and xbee's) with Pure Data.

If you are not into electronics, but you are skilled at building objects or instruments using strings, wood and plastic (or other materials of your choice), you are also welcome to collaborate and share your expertise for the intervention.

If you are interested in keeping some of the electronics after the workshop, you'll have to pay the cost of them accordingly for what you need for your own instrument project.

We will be working with the following structure and materials. If you would like to try some specific sensor let Juan know before hand: 


  • 1st day (22 August): Overall briefing plan, team formation, hands-on materials. Basics of Arduino for prototyping instruments around the project.
  • 2nd day (23 August): Workshop. Basics of Pure Data for prototyping instruments around the project.
  • 3rd day (24 August): Intervention at Linnahall (or other places)


We will provide what we can, but we encourage participants to bring their own materials. It is also helpful if you bring your own laptop computer.

  • Harps.
    • Steel strings
    • Wooden structure
    • Piezo microphones / Amplifiers
  • Kites
    • Arduino or Teensy microcontrollers, Xbees, sensors.
    • 5V batteries
    • portable amplifier circuits powered with a 5V battery.