Ode to Fibonacci or homage to the city

June 26, 2006


In the photo above, a series of numbers descending vertically along the smokestack of the Turku power station reads 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55. What is so special about this otherwise ugly architectural construction? This edifice, adorned with these numbers confirms a special mathematical relationship known as the Fibonacci sequence.

The Fibonacci sequence is obtained by adding the previous two numbers starting with the integer 1. Ex. 1+1=2, 2+1=3, etc. Divide any number in the Fibonacci sequence and the result is always close to 1.61803. This is known as the “golden ratio” or the “golden mean” and is applied in many architectural structures including the Parthenon in Greece. It also explains certain natural phenomena such as the growth pattern of a sunflower or the reproduction cycle of rabbits.

The Turku power station is obviously no place for skateboarding however it will serve as inspiration for this Wednesday’s skateboard performance.

“Ode to Fibonacci” pays homage to this special sequence of numbers and aims to celebrate skateboarding, the city and architecture in Turku.


Notes are selected from a range of numbers from 0 to 55 and played based upon the Fibonacci sequence.

When rolling, the following eight notes are triggered F, G, A, B, C, D, E, F . These notes are comprised of a “Lydian” scale and correspond respectively to: 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34. (the Fibonacci sequence.) By default, non-Fibonacci numbers will output the “low” F note.

Faster wheel rotations yield greater output rates. Thus increasing the speed will increase the tempo. (The maximum value for the tempo is set at 377 beats per minute or 159 milliseconds.)



Skateboarding as relating to sound, space and architecture.

Like gravity which is relative to the presence of matter and the curvature of spacetime, skateboarding is relative to space, and is manifested through the interpretation of space (architecture) with movements and sounds relative to the surrounding environment. In this respect, the skateboarder is a composer of space interacting both visually and acoustically within these spatial surroundings.





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