Wave Farm Radio Art Fellowship: José Alejandro Rivera
Wave Farm is delighted to announce that José Alejandro Rivera will serve as a 2022 Wave Farm Radio Art Fellow. During his engagement, Rivera will make additions to the Wave Farm Broadcast Radio Art Archive, an online resource and broadcast series on Wave Farm’s WGXC 90.7-FM, which is syndicated to stations across the country through The Radio Art Hour. Rivera will also conduct workshops and listening sessions with WGXC programmers and interested members of the public, and create original radio artworks for broadcast.
José Alejandro Rivera (he/they) is a Puerto Rican, Ohio-born artist, composer, designer, and researcher currently based in SW Vermont. Their layered, place-based practice is informed by a background in music, architecture, and tending land. Working through sound and space to draw on critical cartography, technological ubiquity, systems, and flows of temporalities, José creates evocative, experimental soundworks, geo-notational maps, sound design for podcasts and the moving image, and multichannel, audiovisual installations and performances. He regards natural and built environments as woven fabrics of experience and association that exist and change across phenomenological, political, cultural, and aesthetic dimensions. In performances, they often use the space as an instrument, incorporating live and processed location recordings, various microphones and DIY electronics, radios, custom software, samples, and spatialized, textural elements that oscillate between noise and music. José’s encounters with the electromagnetic spectrum pursue expanded states of consciousness, sonic agency, sites of contingency and multiplicity, science fiction, and notions of identity as it relates to neurodivergence, diaspora, and queerness. His interests also include listening beyond sound, learning from the wisdom of plants and medicine making, regenerative farming, dreamwork, meditation, and movement practices like Qigong and yoga. https://proxemiasound.net/
As an extension of his aural cartographic practice, he performs and makes electroacoustic pieces as Proxemia. He has been featured on disquiet.com, framework radio, Rare Frequency, and textsound.org, among others. His multi-year exploration of the origins of weather mapping, radar, and the Green Building at MIT (2016-19), resulted in performances, a handmade cd/object, and a ground-level, 8.1 channel radio installation that mixed live transmission of spatial resonances with sonified weather data, custom software, and location recordings from the roof’s weather station. Other projects and collaborations have been exhibited at the Blackstar Film Festival, Martha Hill Dance Theater at Bennington College, National Arts Centre (NAC), MASS MoCA, Venice Biennale of Architecture, Bienal de Imagen en Movimiento (BIM), the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Together Boston, Goethe-Institut Boston, ICA Boston (Leap Before You Look: Black Mountain College 1933–1957), The Sensory Ethnography Lab, MIT’s MediaLab and List Visual Art Center, The Center for Visual and Performing Arts at UMass Dartmouth, and Le Laboratoire in Cambridge, MA. From 2015-2020, he worked closely with Non-Event, a Boston-based experimental music series, as a live-sound engineer and graphic designer. Along with numerous collaborations, José’s fluid body of work also includes workshops, teaching, and the design and construction of an open-air performance space for a youth dance and drumming group in rural Ghana. They studied art and sound in MIT’s Program in Art, Culture, and Technology (MSc 2017), and hold a BS in Architecture & Environmental Design from Kent State University (2011).