Ruminations on the Voynich Manuscript

As the “world’s most mysterious book,” the Voynich Manuscript is like an inkblot test: whatever people make of it tends to reveal more about them than it does about the manuscript itself.  Its study shares resonances with pareidolia, akin to seeing recognizable shapes in clouds or wood grains, and with the Law of the Instrument,…

Berthold Laufer’s Chinese Stereo Recordings of 1901

In 1901, Berthold Laufer recorded Chinese music and drama using two phonographs at the same time, one for vocals and one for instruments.  Today we can combine the resulting pairs of recordings in stereo, and I’ll be sharing a few examples below, together with an explanation of how I prepared them.  Laufer’s pairs of simultaneously…

How To Write a Trillion-Year Piece of Music

Allow me to introduce the polyprimiad, a musical form anyone can use to produce works that are extremely long and continuously varied. The principle behind it would work nicely as the stuff of a conceptual artwork, but I’d hate to see it limited to that.  I think it also has real aesthetic potential, even if…

All Griffonage That On Earth Doth Dwell

This is my hundredth post at Griffonage-Dot-Com, and to mark the occasion I’ve pulled together new examples of some favorite techniques and subjects showcased here in the past.  Think of it as a plate heaped up for you at the Griffonage Buffet and set down before you in place of the usual a la carte…