Lunar Mare


Last update: 26-01-2023

Composed for: The Torch Collective

Instruments: Trumpet, Clarinet, Double Bass, Vibraphone/Percussion.

Added to the Map of Miracles: Institute for Curiosity.

Location: Circle Zone 1, Fountain Island.


About the piece

The Institute for Creativity is a very intersering initiative by Brian Kai Chin. We met online and Brian planted a Torch on the Map of Miracles. That Torch didn’t turn out to be ‘just a piece of music’ but grew into a reflection on creativity that took a long time to develop. I researched my own creative flow and reflected on “What is Creativity?” .  You can read in that blog, how the Institute for Creativity influenced my personal creative world, helped me light my own  torch.

After a period of reflection on creativity, I renamed my studio ‘Institute for Curiosity’ and started to combine music, textile art and illustration to keep my torch burning. That torch planted on the Map of Miracles, turns out to be an Institute for Curiosity in the real world, a creative environment that feeds my imagination every day.

Thank you, Brian and ensemble Torch, for igniting the spark, that helped me light the torch that shed a different light upon my creative flow and workspace.

The experiment: Hand-felted illustrations

Wishing for new materials to enter my workroom, I designed a hand-felting project with this composition. I wanted to explore whether different materials in my studio would influence my orchestrations, my soundcolors, my #Paints. Does textile influence the orchestration? Will the music sound differently? Warmer?


The FORM and subject of this composition is inspired by the book ‘La Voz del Viento’, haiku’s by Alejandra Darriulat . I discovered that my selection of haiku’s in my order told my own story, but didn’t express the original story that Alejandra put out there. We discussed that there are a lot similarities combining poetry in a book and writing a musical composition: When I write music, I put bits and pieces in a specific order to express my own story, Alejandra does the same thing while ordering her haiki’s in a book. I already wanted to give musicians the freedom to participate in the compositional proces, so they can add their own personal story to the mix, and now I discovered a way to do that.

Inspired by ‘in C’ by T. Riley and all the felted pieces laying around, I decided to make this composition an unfinished quilt: The musical bits and pieces still have to be put together by musicians. The music can be put together in a different way by musicians every time that play, so they can tell their most recent story by picking the pieces they want to play and putting them in the order that thells their story best.

I photographed the materials I felted in a way that expresses one of the haiku’s of Alejandra. I won’t reveal that haiku here, instead I encourage you to read her poetry and find out for yourself. I like working with light and shadows and was inspired by the work of artist Tim Walker. Then, I named the pictures after the seas on the moon, inspired by the pearl-shell button I used for a moon.

Lunar Mare The name suggests that there is water and air on the moon, but in 1651 Giovanni Battista Riccioli did not know that there is none. I like to revisit and connect previous works to built a cohesive oeuvre and this subject connects one of my first songs ‘Tears of Basalt‘ with this new work ‘Lunar Mare’.

The pieces of the Quilt

The musical quilt has 8 bits and pieces, each representing a sea on the moon. The musicians will be able to construct their own story by putting the bits and pieces together in their own preferred way.

The diameter of the seas will be used to set a mathematical structure and construct a FORM.

Schönberg’s ‘Models for Beginners in Composition’, especially the notes used by Schönberg to teach Alban Berg will inspire the music theory used. Schönberg emphasizes the use of variations, which might work well for this project.

A few pages of Schoenberg models for beginners in composition

Mare Humorum (389)

Mare Imbrium (1123)

Mare Nubium (715)

Mare Spumans (139)

Mare Undarum (243)

Mare Vaporum (245)

Oceanus Procellarum (2568)

Mare Frigoris (1596)



To prepare for this composition, I experimented with other pieces first, to get to know the instruments better:

Dog Paw Fanfare for trumpets and a barking audience: to learn more about piccolo trumpet and audience interaction.

Margina for windband: to learn more about Asian persuccion and marimba.