The Logan Center presents this online exhibition* of a collection of MAPS OF FORM made by UChicago composers of the Chicago Center for Contemporary Composition.  

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s statement “Music is liquid architecture; architecture is frozen music” has, for the past 40 years, stirred my imagination and sparked creative journeys into sonic, visual, physical, formal, and spatial explorations.

Augusta Read Thomas

Composers and improvisers throughout history have created sketches, doodles, maps-of-form, charts, and limitless other kinds of visual and notational representations of their sounds. This collection of MAPS-OF-FORM, made by many UChicago composers, offers a glimpse into their various working processes, craft, and imagination.

Form conserves energy. But what exactly is the relationship between a specific composition’s musical materials and its duration and form? Are the proportions of various sections in balance with one another based on the terms presented by and inherent to the very musical materials of those sections- and for the whole? How so? How do we know? How, for a musical composition, could these relationships be illustrated with drawings and diagrams?

Thank you for joining us in an online tour of the magical and personal creative worlds of these many inventive composers.

Augusta Read Thomas, Composer & University Professor of Composition in the Department of Music and the College


*Maps of Form is also on exhibit at the Logan Center and can be viewed by UChicago students, staff and faculty.

Explore the online exhibition (For best viewing, use full-screen option): 

View the images on display individually on Flickr.


Exhibition Introduction from Augusta Read Thomas

Watch Videos from Featured Artists: 


This exhibition was organized by Leigh Fagin, Senior Director of Programming and Engagement at the Logan Center, with help from Clare Austen-Smith, Marcus Warren, Beth Awano, '21 and Sarah Scotese, '21.   

Visit the The Chicago Center for Contemporary Composition