Viola Rühse (University for Continuing Education Krems)


Sound patterns and voice figures – An analysis of selected sound visualisations in the 18th and 19th century from the perspective of “Bildwissenschaft” (image science)


Contact: [email protected]


Ernst Florens Friedrich Chladni (1756-1827)

- Entdeckungen über die Theorie des Klanges [Discoveries on the Theory of Sound], Weidmanns Erben und Reich, Leipzig 1787

- Die Akustik [Acoustics], Breitkopf & Härtel, Leipzig 1802

Further materials on the Chladni patterns:

- Singing Plates video by Dianna Cowern on the Physics Girl YouTube channel,

- Formation of Standing Waves, The Physics Classroom 


Margaret (Megan) Watts Hughes (1842-1907)

- Margaret Watts Hughes, The Eidophone Voice Figures. Geometrical and Natural Forms produced by Vibrations of the Human Voice, 2nd edition, London: Christian Herald Company Ltd. 1904.

Secondary literature on Watts Hughes' voice figures:

Rob Mulender, Divine agency. Bringing to light the voice figures of Margaret Watts-Hughes, SoundEffects, vol. 8, no. 1, 2019,

Rob Mullender-Ross, Picturing a Voice. Margaret Watts Hughes and the Eidophone, The Public Domain Review, November 27, 2019,

Anca-Simona Horvath’s and Viola Rühse’s research on the Chladni patterns:

- Anca-Simona Horvath, Viola Rühse, Chladni Patterns Gone 3D. Computational Design and Digital Fabrication Methods for Producing Sound-Informed Geometries, Howard Griffin, Connections: Exploring Heritage, Architecture, Cities, Art, Media,: Part II 316-326, AMPS Proceedings Series 2021,

- Viola Rühse, Anca-Simona Horvath, Visualizing Sound Waves – Complex Media Art and Chladni Patterns, CIHA Congress Proceedings 2022, Sao Paulo 2023 (forthcoming)

- Anca-Simona Horvath, Viola Rühse, The Chladni Wall, in: HCI International 2020 – Late Breaking Posters, Proceedings, Part II, ed. Constantine Stephanidis et. al. (Cham: Springer, 2020), doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-60703-6_50.


An introduction to the history of styles in scientific imagery:

The Technical Image. A History of Styles in Scientific Imagery, edited by Horst Bredekamp, Vera Dünkel, and Birgit Schneider, University of Chicago Press 2015,