2018 Wave Farm Artists-in-residence Announced
Acra, NY— Wave Farm announced today the ten artists and projects selected for the 2018 Wave Farm Residency Program. Each artist will live and work on-site at the Wave Farm Study Center for ten days during the residency season, which spans June through October.
The Wave Farm Residency program provides artists with a valuable opportunity to concentrate on new transmission artworks and conduct research about the genre using the Wave Farm Study Center resource library. In conjunction with their residencies, artists perform, are interviewed, and create playlists for broadcast on Wave Farm’s WGXC 90.7-FM, a creative community radio station serving over 78,000 potential listeners in New York’s Upper Hudson Valley, and international listeners online. Resident works are archived in the Wave Farm Transmission Arts Archive at http://transmissionsart.org.
In 2018, Wave Farm welcomes DinahBird and Jean-Philippe (Paris, France); Mollye Bendell (Baltimore, MD); Dan Tapper (Toronto, Canada); Nicholas Knouf (Wellesley, MA); Kate Donovan (Berlin, Germany); Amanda Dawn Christie (Montreal, Canada); Angus Tarnawsky (Toronto, Canada); Doug Kaplan aka MrDougDoug (Chicago, IL); Clara Lou (Brooklyn, NY); and Aaron Dilloway (Oberlin, OH).
Wave Farm Executive Director Galen Joseph-Hunter said, “Artists making multidimensional work with and about the airwaves is what transmission art is all about. This year’s roster of artists, selected from our largest application pool to-date, has proposed exceptional projects that experiment with the radio spectrum in installation, composition, and performance. The Wave Farm Residency program occupies an important place in this dynamic field internationally, and we are excited by the growth, interest, and support the program continues to experience.”
WAVE FARM RESIDENCY PROGRAM SELECTED ARTISTS AND PROJECTS
DinahBird and Jean-Philippe (Paris, France)— Tuning the World Tuning the World is a series of outdoor broadcasts, an active approach to field recording and listening where live sonic drones are transmitted back into the soundscape. Jean-Philippe plays a shruti box, a Northern Indian portable instrument, cousin to the harmonium, while Dinah “actively” records the process, moving back and forth between the environmental sounds such as water, wind and birds and the transmitted sound. Dinah will also play single notes and tuneless human hums, inspired by the local electromagnetic environment, via small FM radios. The aim is not to dominate or disturb, but rather more to observe how the landscape responds to the artists’ emissions.
Inspired by the ideas and methods of R Murray Schafer, his theories on soundscape, and his concept of "wilderness radio," where the “uneventful events of the natural soundscape transmitted without editing into the hearts of cities” (Radical Radio -1987) as well as Pauline Oliveros’ practice of Deep Listening, DinahBird and Jean-Philippe have developed their own "active" listening and recording posture in order to play with the surrounding natural landscape, softly and quietly, and at varying distances from the microphones that document their actions. In addition, at Wave Farm the artists will research and prepare the U.S. chapter of Antenna Gods their ongoing project into the world of (HFT)
High Frequency trading, it’s use of microwave technology, and its related radio history. The project documents these outposts through image and sound, and learning about the past and present uses of these neglected transmission towers.
Mollye Bendell (Baltimore, MD)— Whethervanes In Whethervanes Bendell continues a practice in antenna design, delving farther into the physical side of electronic media, building her own circuits in a playful meditation on the physics of the signal. Whethervanes consists of a series of experimental radios in which components such as the tuner and antennae are subject to the wind. Found and constructed objects including weathervanes, flags, sails, and windmills are used to manipulate different kinds of potentiometers and different antenna configurations. Bendell's specialized and sculpted radio devices mount to roofs, stake into gardens, and observe the tides from piers. Whethervanes illustrate the physical nature of electronic media in conversation with a force of nature.
Mollye Bendell makes digital and analog sculptures to connect with digital and analog worlds. She seeks to create the space between physical beings, to build a practice around intangibility and to meditate on the contradiction of the act of making in the absence of the object. Her work uses the ephemeral nature of electronic media as a metaphor for exploring vulnerability, visibility, and longing in a world that can feel isolating.
Dan Tapper (Toronto, Canada)— Seven Songs for Seven Planets and a Black Hole at the Heart of the Universe Dan Tapper's Seven Songs for Seven Planets and a Black Hole at the Heart of the Universe is a series of seven immersive auditory experiences, based on the planets in our solar system and cited throughout the Wave Farm property. The work is conceived as a journey through the Solar System, informed by data from space and naturally occurring radio waves, disseminated through broadcasts and locative audio. Sound created at each site is generative and evolving based on information gathered from planetary orbits and rotations. In a radio broadcast on Wave Farm's WGXC 90.7-FM Tapper will showcase the raw data for each piece and reveal how it evolves into a finished work, highlighting the shaping and sculpting of data by scientific organizations.
Dan Tapper explores the sonic and visual properties of the unheard and invisible. From revealing electromagnetic sounds produced by the earth’s ionosphere, to mining data from space and forming imaginary structures made from code. His explorations use scientific methods alongside thought experiments resulting in rich sonic and visual worlds.
Nicholas Knouf (Wellesley, MA)— §97.215 Revisited: Poetic Ciphered Transmissions The FCC grants broad ability for licensed amateur radio operators to transmit in specific frequency bands, build custom transceiver equipment, and construct their own experimental antennas. Nevertheless, the content of what is actually transmitted is rather limited. There are vocal minorities of racists and misogynists on the air, and the remaining conversation sticks to the limited topics of the size of one's antenna or the amount of power transmitted. As well, amateur radio operators are, for the most part, prohibited from encrypting or otherwise obscuring the content of their transmissions. Yet there's an interesting loophole in the regulations, in §97.215, "Telecommand of model craft." Because of the need to limit who can control these model craft, the FCC allows the transmissions that control the craft to be encrypted. This, along with telecommand of space stations (that is, orbiting satellites), is the only place in the regulations where obscuring the content is allowed. Knouf's §97.215 Revisited: Poetic Ciphered Transmissions employs this loophole to create a new set of poetic, ciphered communication between himself as the transmitter and the resulting model craft (in this case, a drone).
Nicholas Knouf is a media scholar and artist who lives in the liminal spaces between signal and noise. His current research project is titled At the Limits of Communication and explores how we are searching for signals from extraterrestrial entities. Knouf considers the digital and analog worlds fundamentally intertwined and uses a variety of media in his work such as handmade paper, radio, digital signal processing, augmented reality, and generative poetry. He aims to bring people into closer relationships between themselves on this earth and the entities out there in the cosmos.
Kate Donovan (Berlin, Germany)— The Bespoke Headpiece The Bespoke Headpiece is a radio myth; one that is imagined to date back millennia. The story has travelled orally through generations of those who have lived in locations where the Aurora Borealis reveals itself, and where some women could not only see the illuminated sky, but could also hear the phenomenon. As part of a coming of age ritual girls would spend three nights alone with the Aurora night sky, wearing custom headdresses fashioned as receiving antennas, constructed of natural materials and designed to amplify the reception of sound. Folklore tells of this rite of passage, where reception was so acutely tuned that the young women alone in the night could hear voices of the deceased and the unborn. It is said that these voices provided guidance and support as the girls began their journey into adulthood.
Kate Donovan is a radio artist/practitioner, facilitator and researcher based in Berlin. Her artistic practice deals with radio in an elemental sense, in terms of frequency, transmission and interconnectedness. Her editorial and organizational work in free and community radio fosters inclusion, diversity, and experimentation. With questions of science-fact, the imagined, physical immersion and the “environment” in mind, her research (and in turn, her practice) is an exploration of radio as a natural phenomenon, an artistic medium, and a site for resistance.
Amanda Dawn Christie (Montreal, Canada)— Radio Cowers For close to a decade, Amanda Dawn Christie has been working on a series of projects related to the Radio Canada International (RCI) shortwave transmission site. Built during WWII, and operational for 70 years, RCI was situated in rural New Brunswick; it was the only site of its kind in Canada, and one of the most important in the world. RCI was demolished in 2014, and Christie’s work with this material is still ongoing. Radio Cowers is an extension of Amanda Dawn Christie's expansive and multifaceted Requiem for Radio project, which documents and responds to the dismantling of the Radio Canada International (RCI) transmission site and towers. In Radio Cowers, circuitry for a homemade AM transmitter is sewn into cowhide gloves worn by the artist who plays the cello with a bow constructed of cow bone (sourced from a herd that lived near the towers) and horsehair. A contact microphone inserted into the resonate body of the cello is routed into the wearable transmitter and its signals are received by a radio positioned near the artist. Radio Cowers is a humorous take on the fraught relationship between technology and nature. Christie's instrument is inspired by the cow pastures surrounding the RCI radio towers as well as the dairy farms that had to be relocated because of the proximity of RCI's high voltage emissions.
Amanda Dawn Christie is an interdisciplinary artist working in film, video, performance, photography, installation, sound, and transmission. Her work not only spans across these mediums but also brings them together in ways that blur the boundaries of where one discipline ends and the next begins. She has exhibited and performed in art galleries across Canada, and her films have screened internationally from Cannes to South Korea to San Francisco and beyond. She currently works as an assistant professor of video, performance, and electronics at Concordia University, in Montreal, Quebec. Her current projects look at the relationship between the human body and analogue technology in a digital age, and incorporate basic electronic circuitry and shortwave radio into installations and performance.
Angus Tarnawsky (Toronto, Canada)— Timestreams Timestreams is a webcam audiovisual project investigating sonification of real-world spaces. Utilizing a variety of data extraction techniques, Angus Tarnawsky reinterprets information from webcam streams to produce entirely new "shadow" worlds. By manipulating site-specific data digitally, he explores the interplay between physical and virtual spaces. Through this work, Tarnaswky is developing a unique platform for improvisation and composition as a sound artist. At the core of this project is the use of real-time analysis of audio/video from webcams to compose generative soundscapes. Multiple surveillance cameras capturing video and audio are installed on the Wave Farm grounds. The physical locations for each webcam are chosen based on the dynamism of available visual content and variety of naturally occurring sonic phenomena. A website houses the raw webcam streams, both for the artist's own use within the project and as a way to invite access to the visual aspects of the project.
Angus Tarnawsky's practice employs technology as a means of reimagining day-to-day situations and scenarios. Exploring new media through electro-acoustic improvisation and electronic composition, his work challenges audiences to experience their surroundings from different perspectives. As a whole, Tarnawsky is fascinated by the exposition of what cannot immediately be seen or heard. By instigating dialogues between spontaneity and structure, he hopes to facilitate new ways of understanding relationships between sound and vision. Within this framework, Tarnawsky places considerable importance on translating visual data into sonic information and linking visual content to sound.
Doug Kaplan aka MrDougDoug (Chicago, IL)— Ira Glass Speaks for Himself Inspired by Douglas Kahn’s piece Reagan Speaks for Himself (1980), in which Kahn carefully edits together Ronald Reagan interviews to concoct a hilarious and surreal story, Ira Glass Speaks for Himself is a proposed long-form troll radioplay in which one of radio’s most recognizable voices is mercilessly edited to tell a mind-boggling, magical realism-core, ambling non-story.
As MrDougDoug, Doug Kaplan explores the possibilities of electro-acoustic improvisation and guitar performance in the trio Good Willsmith, while showcasing his peers’ genre-bending electronic music as a co-founder of the Hausu Mountain label. In recent years, Kaplan has directed his attention towards the excesses of the Internet, using the WWW’s hidden treasures and meme culture as source material for his compositions.
Clara Lou (Brooklyn, NY)— Soft Broadcast Spectre Sound Soft Broadcast Spectre Sound is a radio play, mixed live where multiple transmission frequencies serve as both instrumentation and performers. The live mix is performed by moving the radio dial in a structured improvisation. For example, one character's lines may be transmitted on 87.9-FM and another character's lines on 87.7-FM. Lou moves the dial back and forth between the two frequencies in order to "perform" the dialogue. The imperfections of transmission technology are also considered, as signal bleed is embraced and intentional. Commercial radio is integrated the performance, allowing Top 40, Bible radio, and so on to intersperse with the artist's original recordings. Lou’s fractured narrative incorporates Foley, derived from tools and toys in the Wave Farm broadcast studio and augmented by household items, but here the artist employs a craft usually oriented towards making scene more easily graspable, to complicate the narrative space.
Clara Lou is an artist who works with text, sound, and performance, producing radio drama using non-linear narrative, layered voices, and a combination of found and homemade music and sound effects. Lou's work is frequently presented as installation, broadcast live on old radios using FM transmitters.
Aaron Dilloway (Oberlin, OH)— Everyone Eats Garbage Everyone Eats Garbage is a radio work informed by a large archive of obsolete sound effects tape carts that were once used by KXLU 88.9-FM in Los Angeles. Dilloway extends the life of these abandoned and outdated radio artifacts by cutting, splicing, looping, and manipulating them into a new and substantial work for broadcast.
Aaron Dilloway is a celebrated improviser and composer who works with 1/4" tape loops in 8-track cartridges as well as other discarded electronic equipment. In his performance-based practice, he manipulates magnetic tape in real-time by feeding the loops sounds from his body, everyday objects, electronic sources, prepared tapes, as well as the occasional actual instrument.
The Wave Farm Residency Program is supported, in part, by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; the National Endowment for the Arts; The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts; the Greene County Legislature through the County Initiative Program, administered in Greene County by the Greene County Council on the Arts; and generous individual donors.
Visit https://wavefarm.org/ta/residencies for more information.