A  bamboo pipe attached to a shaft. The cavity is filled with water until the equilibrium is broken and the tube turns. Originally, this construction was used by farmers to keep unwanted animals away from the harvests. Gradually they began to appreciate the sound, which can be regarded as a symbolism of time and eternity. This shishi-odoshi is from Shisen-dō, and it is said that Jozan, who built the garden, was one of the first people to start enjoying the shishi-odoshi as part of the garden aesthetics. The sound and character of shishi-odoshi varies, another example:


Excess water from a water basin, chozubachi, drops into a hidden cavity underground. The encounter with the water surface creates a sound which resonates and brings a musical tone. Suikinkutsu is a centuries old tradition in Japan and it can be found in several zen gardens, this video clip is from Enkō-ji in Kyoto.

For a collection of suikinkutsu, visit:

Water organ of Villa d’este, Italy

The Renaissance villa “Villa d’este” outside of Rome is famous for its more than five hundred fountains, water games and water surprises, all of which are mechanically driven by old, good engineering spirit. Water is led by gravity through underground tunnels and led to the various installations who needs nothing more than this natural pressure to function. The pipes in the water organ are also driven by the weight/pressure of the water.

Villa d’este: Pirro Ligorio and Alberto Galvani 1550. Read more

Organ and hydraulics: Claude Venard och Thomaso Chiruchi

Tonal water flow

The fall of the water is designed so that it breaks the surface tension which creates a clear underwater tone. The sound seems to tell us about a mysterious world underneath the surface.


Western harbour, Malmö

Water wall

Water falls directly against hard material which creates a relatively high-frequency sound. The sound is reflected and reinforced against the wall, and once again toned  by the material.

Solbjerg Plads, Köpenhamn


Natural stream

A dynamic and natural stream.

Det biovidenskabelige fakultets have,