archaeology of sound

Now you can listen to the sound of 18th-century Paris while virtually strolling through its meandering streets.


A team of researchers at the musicology department of the université Lumière Lyon 2 (including archeologists, sociologists, ethnologists, historians, and computer experts) has created a 3D reconstruction of a section of Paris by the Seine that includes the ambiant noises of the city life, based on a meticulous analysis of historic documents.

The video shows the Grand Châtelet, the Pont au Change, the Pont Notre-Dame, the rue de la Pelleterie, and the quai de Gesvres right by the Seine.

In addition to the streets and the architecture, you can see the river pump and the houses that once stood on the bridges.

You can read more about this project here (in French)

“The Giphoscope, the analog GIF player”

This is not really about the 18th century, but LOOK AT THIS. I mean, how FUN is this?! This fascinating device uses a rotating spindle to create a moving image that resembles GIF files. Hence the name “GIPHoscope”!

You can purchase your very own Botticelli Birth of Venus Giphoscope or commission a customized one at this Etsy boutique.

I don’t think the creators of the Giphoscope have made one with an eighteenth-century artwork. What images would make good candidates for this device? There are so many.. Surely an animated GIF of a rocaille arabesque design with tendrils growing into all directions.

Or maybe this..?

With the water flowing down the fountain and Venus and the mermen and amour coming to life in real flesh..? This painting already moves anyway in my eyes and in my mind..

Ahhhh, a dixhuitièmiste can dream.

François Boucher
The Fountain of Venus
Cleveland Museum of Art