In his creative experiments, Trimpin engages the visual, spatial, and kinetic properties of sound to “play instruments in such a way that no matter how complex the composition of the timing, it can be pushed over the limits.”


Trimpin is a German-born composer and sound artist who has lived and worked in Seattle since 1979. His sound sculptures, installations and set designs have been developed in collaboration with artists such as Merce Cunningham, Samuel Beckett, Conlon Nancarrow and the Kronos Quartet. His work has appeared at museums, galleries, and festivals across the Pacific Northwest. The documentary film TRIMPIN: The Sound of Invention premiered at the South by Southwest Film Festival. He is a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and the MacArthur “Genuis” grant.

Combining digital technology with everyday salvaged materials,Trimpin has invented ways of playing everything from giant marimbas to a 60-foot stack of guitars using MIDI commands. Taking inspiration equally from the junkyard as the museum and the concert hall, Trimpin often creates these eccentric and interactive instruments from found materials, including saw blades, toy monkeys, duck calls, beer bottles, bunsen burners, slide projectors, turkey basters, and pottery wheels. Trimpin’s computer-driven musical contraptions defy the constraints of traditional instruments.

Learn more about Trimpin.

This residency is presented by the MIT Center for Art, Science & Technology.


Past Event

Artist Presentation
April 17, 2013 12:00pm


In the Media

Seattle Magazine: Trimpin: Seattle’s Most Innovative Piano Man



Blog: Trimpin