Student Research Projects

A Comparative Study Relating the Geometric Forms of Islamic Art and Gothic Cathedrals with Modern Theories of Musical Pitch and Intonation

Student Stephanie Harron '15 (Hispanic Studies and Music)
Department Music
Course Independent Study

Abstract

This research investigates the history of various art forms of religious structures from both Muslim and Catholic Empires of the Iberian Peninsula in Spain at the end of the Middle Ages. Investigating the fundamental geometric forms of both Islamic art and Gothic architecture, there is a connection between religious influence, visual creativity, and architectural structure that strengthens the physical capacity to the human experience. Relating these two art forms to music theory provides an introduction to the progress of music sciences in the modern age, including Cymatics, a twentieth-century science of wave phenomenon that demonstrates various geometric shapes of frequencies and musical pitch. This interdisciplinary approach of visualizing the common geometric forms of art, architecture, and music questions the anticipatory influence and outlook of the arts for future generations.

Awards

Global Scholars Fellowship. Seville, Spain. 2015