Thomas Parker Williams – Hexatonic Prime


© 2016
edition of 25
dimensions in inches: 5 x 6

About this piece:

A hexatonic mode is a musical scale consisting of only six notes to the octave. Any six notes of the chromatic twelve tone scale can be used. The relationships of these notes will produce modes of tonality or dissonance. Hexatonic Prime is a mode where the note positions are determined by the prime numbers between 2 and 13. Since this mode starts with the second note (C sharp) the scale ends with the Tonic (first note) one octave above.
The music composition consists of seven 31-measure sections of an improvised, two-part piano piece, using only the notes of the Hexatonic Prime mode with added percussion in 6/8 time. Section one starts with the mode in its original form. Each succeeding section transposes the mode by the next prime number in the set of primes from 2 through 13.

 The six panels illustrate, with color and shape, my impression of the modes. The back of each panel contains the music notation for the Hexatonic Prime Mode and each transposition.

A book in two parts
Part one – Six hexagon panels (5 x 6 inches) with color illustrations printed from reduction linocuts. Rear panels are letterpress printed from polymer plates.
Part two – Hexagon shaped book with text printed from linocut and polymer plates with Music CD and companion video DVD.

Printed on the Luminice Press on Mowhawk Superfine Cover smooth using inks and dry pigments in litho and oil transparent base. Tyvek hinged accordion binding that opens to display all panels flat (8 x 29 inches) or folded (dimensions variable)


paper, inks, pigments, transparent base, tyvek

About the artist:

Thomas Parker Williams lives and works in Philadelphia. His work includes hand-made artist book editions, printmaking and painting,. Some of his artist book editions contain an audio element – music or sound work – composed, performed, and recorded by the artist. Tom’s artists’ books, paintings and prints have been exhibited in Philadelphia, New York, and throughout the country, and are in numerous private and public collections.


Thomas Parker Williams – Hexatonic Prime