The Murmuration Cloud

The Glass Cyphers

United Kingdom
The Placemaking Special Commendation Award
The Murmuration Cloud

Inspired by the collective beauty and synchronicity of starling murmurations, clusters of light swirl and float across and through the surfaces and insides of The Murmuration Cloud, a sound-reactive sculptural installation by The Glass Cyphers. Suspended above us, the cloud seems to float in the air, taking in our sound and turning it into a multi-layered light show, gathering people in its glow. 

Using open source software Pure Data, sound input is processed using pitch and volume to control particles, which are projected onto and through the fibrous surfaces of the cloud, accompanied by textural layers of original video, either live-mixed for performances or using a pre-mixed video file, with all the content projection-mapped onto the sculpture.

The installation has been used in a sound-rich environment (lots of ambient noise) as well as for music/sound performances, where the contrast between performance and absolute silence are particularly effective in showing the qualities of the work. The Cloud is lightweight - constructed from acrylic resin impregnated glass fibre matting and polyester rods and projected onto from either side (lumen rating of projectors would be determined by brightness of space), consists of 7 discreet sections and in its original state is 5 x 1.7 x 1.7m. The looped sections can be assembled in numerous different configurations, creating an installation that is flexible to work in different spaces.

The Murmuration Cloud
The Murmuration Cloud
The Murmuration Cloud
The Murmuration Cloud


Mac Pro (MacPro6,1);

Alto 5 channel mixer;

Supertronic ST10 microphone;

2 x Epson EB-G7900U projectors


Pure Data;

Grand VJ;



Christmas in Leeds — The Murmuration Cloud by Glass Cyphers