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The Study Initiatives


Verbal​ language could only cover 40% of human daily communication, leading to the variety of art that human has invented to communicate deeper feelings.

Music is one of the medium that carries meaning more than words. Where words fail us, could visual play a part of conveying the perception of music?

Experience Design

Hong Kong

July 2020

Current State - Research

Research & Insights


We have known that perception could not possibly be fully translated into words. So where are the opportunities for visual to come in and translate music?

Within the research project, the team conducted rounds of interviews and music workshops with different groups of people.

Different drawing tasks are performed by the test group and visuals are generated, organised and decoded. It resulted in 3 big categories of perception and a table of visual translation of music.

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The Idea & Execution


With all the insights gathered, the research team decided to propose an exhibition about musical perception through three installation experiences that provide different ways to experience music. This is built according to the research on how humans universally perceive music.:

1st Installation: The Senses - Temporality

2nd Installation: The Shades - Spatiality

3rd Installation: The Table - Movement

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The Branding


With the idea above, the visual language of the exhibition should also follow the vagueness of musical perception. Therefore, it was designed in a fluid and flexible approach.

The exhibition branding provides a large blank space on each printed and digital material to show the unlimited capacity of spaces where visitors can fill up with their own perception.

The name ‘Muse’ is taken from the inspiration of Greek mythology.


The Greek goddesses of art & music are the Muses. They are known as one entity, though there are actually 9 of them and each is unique in their own way.


It resonances with the concept of perception as perception could be understood universally to some extent, though still unique among each of us.


The Senses - Pure Cognitive Experience

(Temporality of Music)


This experience encourages visitors to entirely trust their own guts and follow their instinct while listening to the music, leaving a great space for visitors to create freely without any guidelines restricting them. 


The body-interactive experience includes a large surrounding fabric coated with Thermo-reactive ink that could instantly react with the human body. Visitors touch and create colour images on the fabric. As the temperature cooled down, the colour fades away, as so does music which constantly appears and fade.


The Shades - Perception Decoded

[Spatiality of Music]


This installation is re-inventing how the 9 sampled participants perceived the same extract of the music. Their simple doodles are  transformed into a certain type of graphic display.

When visitors stand in the middle of the installation surrounded by the ever-changing shades, areas with more white shade means the person perceive music the most in the exact direction.

The Table - Visual Translator

[Movement of Music]


The last installation is a translation between musical perception and visual language which aims to understand how perception works when music meets our mind. The aim of this table is to provide a visual way for people to use to convey perceptions of music that our verbal language could not.

The lines recorded the movement of music perceived by the focus group, and organised into the table mentioned above (see research). Tiles are made as the foundation of the visual language for visitors to create their own visual score of music.


Visitors are encouraged to arrange the tiles freely as they listen to the music. The 'Visual Score' will be printed as a souvenir after the visitors finished the music piece.

Each 'Visual Score' is unique to each person and so as musical perception and will be displayed as a collective library at the end of the exhibition

What is your music perception?

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