The Ninth Annual Activating the Medium Festival
San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco, February 10 & 11
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, February 12
San Francisco Art Institute, Graduate Campus, San Francisco, February
Cuesta College, San Luis Obispo, February 24
23five Incorporated presented The 9th Annual Activating the Medium
Festival in conjunction with The San Francisco Art Institute and
San Francisco Cinematheque from February 10 thru February 27 in
San Francisco, and February 24 in San Luis Obispo.
The 9th installment of Activating the Medium brings together two
new collaborating institutions, SFAI and San Francisco Cinematheque,
to present yet another trans-disciplinary program dedicated to sound
art. This year showcases international sound artists working with
sound and video/film.
Friday, February 10:
San Francisco Art Institute Lecture Hall
Live Sound/Film Performance:
"I.C.You" by Laetitia Sonami (SF) and Sue Costabile (SF)
Phill Niblock (NYC): "Sur Dos (Peru)"
Xabier Erkizia (Spain) + Dimitris Kariofilis (Greece): "(un)commonsounds"
Joachim Montessuis (France): "la danse des fous"
Saturday, February 11:
San Francisco Art Institute Lecture Hall
Live Sound/Video Performance:
Ilios (Dimitris Kariofilis, Greece)
Leif Elggren (Sweden): "Celebration of a Revolution"
Michael 9 (SF): "Waiting 2006 8:0"
Gordon Monahan (Canada): "Speaker Swinging 1987"
Sunday, February 12:
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
Visual Noises: Sound Films by Stan Brakhage
"Boulder Blues and Pearls and…"
"Fire of Waters"
"Christ Mass Sex Dance"
"Crack Glass Eulogy"
"…" (Reel 5)
"Passage Through (A Ritual)"
Monday, February 13–Monday, February 27:
San Francisco Art Institute
Graduate Campus, 2565 Third 2nd Floor,
Room 1 (Bay 2)
Installation: In Coherence
For "In Coherence" CHRISTOPHER MUSGRAVE
will be making is a multi-channel perceptual audio / visual (sound
and light) installation. In it, periodic oscillations of raw energy
drive both aural and optic elements. The environment is designed
to intoxicate the visitor with hypnotic, entraining stimulus. The
after effects should be as much or more interesting than the
Room 2 (Bay 2)
New video works curated by SCOTT ARFORD, featuring:
1. Brigitta Bodenauer and Miguel Carvalhais: Can I Have 2 Minutes
of Your Time?
2. Fujui Wang: Elastic Impulse
3. Sue C and AGF: fortythousand3hundred20memories
4. LoVid: Breaking and Entering the Lost Timeframe
5. Joshua Azzarela: Untitled #3 (B.B.)
6. Brian O'Reilly: Octal Hatch
7. Masako Tanaka: Particles, Quad
8. Fred Szymanski: Retentions 3 and 4
Friday, February 24:
Cuesta College, San Luis Obispo,
Music Lecture Hall
Phill Niblock, Xabier Erkizia, Dimitris Kariofilis, Joachim Montessuis,
Leif Elggren, Michael 9, Gordon Monahan, Brigitta Bodenauer, Fred
Szymanski, Masako Tanaka, Christopher Musgrave, Brian O'Reilly,
Fujui Wang, Joshua Azzarella, LoVid,
Sue Costabile and AGF.
Friday, March 3:
San Francisco Art Institute Lecture Hall
Gordon Monahan (Canada)
Curated by Randy H.Y. Yau, Scott Arford, Steve Polta, and David
Performances and Screenings presented at San Francisco Art Institute
Admission is $8 general and free for SFAI students. Lecture on March
3 is free to public.
Screening at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts:
Admission is $8 general and $5 for students, seniors and Cinematheque
LAETITIA SONAMI is an electronic composer, performer and
sound installation artist who explores ways to translate objects
and movements into sound, often incorporating one with the other.
She uses interactive media to translate gesture and performance
into an experimental aural narrative that explores the ever-shifting
evolution of perspective. Best known for her lady's glove, an evening
black lycra glove studded with a myriad of sensors, she has performed
worldwide and is based in Oakland, CA. She currently teaches at
the San Francisco Art Institute and the Milton Avery graduate school
of the Arts at Bard College.
SUE COSTABILE works mainly in a live audio-visual context. Synthesizing
images in real-time using a customized computer-based animation
technique, she explores the persistence of visual memory and aural
associations. Direct physical manipulation of photographs, texturized
watercolors, rough-hewn papers, fabrics and re-appropriated objects
leads to stories layered in light, space and time. Collaborators
include AGF, Morton Subotnick, Kit Clayton, Laetitia Sonami, and
Luc Ferrari. She currently teaches video-related media at the California
College of Arts and the San Francisco Art Institute
PHILL NIBLOCK (born 2 October 1933, in Anderson, Indiana) is a minimalist
composer, filmmaker, videographer, and director of Experimental
Intermedia, a foundation for avant-garde music based in New York.
His music usually consists of simultaneous drones created from tape
(later computer) manipulations of recorded pitches performed by
instrumentalists such as Rafael Toral, David First, Lee Ranaldo,
and Thurston Moore, on Guitar Too, for Four (G2,44+1x2);
and Ulrich Krieger, on Touch Food. He was to curate the
Experimental Intermedia Foundation's CD series, XI Records, with
composers David Behrman and Lois V Vierk but wound up doing it alone.
Phill Niblock creates thick, loud, atonal drones of music, filled
with microtones of instrumental timbres that generate many other
overtones by pulsing against each other in the performance space.
Simultaneously, he presents films/videos that look at the movement
of people working, or computer-driven, black-and-white abstract
images floating through time. Since the mid-1960s, he has been making
music and intermedia performances that have been shown at numerous
venues around the world. His musical works are notated as actual
frequencies (cycles per second) and often transform slowly from
consonance to dissonance or the reverse. Since 1985, he has been
the director of the Experimental Intermedia Foundation in New York
where he has been an artist/member since 1968. He is the producer
of Music and Intermedia presentations at EI since 1973 (about 1000
performances) and the curator of EI's XI Records label. Unlike Charlemagne
Palestine, whose approach to works of absolute sound is similar,
Niblock works with absolute pitches, while Palestine works with
Phill Niblock's music is available on the XI, Moikai, Mode, and
Touch labels. A DVD of films and music is available on the Extreme
label, and his film The Magic Sun, an abstract, avant-garde
film featuring the music of Sun Ra and members of the Sun Ra Arkestra,
is available on DVD from Atavistic Records.
Currently Barcelona based, Greek artist ILIOS has been developing
a unique code of expression in the field of experimental sound media.
He proposes an extraordinary sound palette that changes in every
project in order to protect an anti-career through a sound spectrum
that starts from orthodox silence and ends to catholic noise.
Since 1992, ILIOS has appeared in major festivals and has performed
more than 80 shows in Europe and Japan. ILIOS has more than 30 audio
and visual works published in different formats, including 11 solo
audio works. Has numerous studio and live collaborations with artists
from Europe, Japan and the U.S.A ILIOS has produced, directed and
staged 7 proper multimedia shows and has been awarded the Melina
Merkouri prize for the Arts in 1997. Also he has written music for
contemporary dance companies, theatre, films. He has also worked
in the field of communication audiovisual projects for TV and cinema
at "Fabrica", the laboratory for communication of Benneton.
Since 1997 he runs Antifrost, a publishing platform/label for sound
media with more than 30 works published till date by 45 renowned
artists from all over the globe. He organises the annual Electrograph
– Athens Sound Media festival and co-directs the Uncommonsounds
JOACHIM MONTESSUIS : Vit et travaille principalement entre Cologne,
Paris et Strasbourg. Joachim Montessuis développe depuis
une dizaine d'années une pratique transversale autour de
la voix, du son et de l'image électronique fixés et/ou
traités en temps réel. Ses install/actions-concerts
sont pensés et contextualisés comme des espaces poétiques
de perturbation et de brouillage sensoriels, véritables expériences
immersives entre cinéma élargi et vidéo expérimentale,
crescendos extrêmes de transes hypnotiques cherchant les limites
de la perception et de la tolérance paradoxale. Son utilisation
des technologies interactives de captation intègre parfois
des expérimentations en réseau (streaming, feedback
et/ou téléprésence). Il a travaillé
dans différents milieux et festivals (Québec, Berlin,
Beyrouth, Bruxelles, Afrique du nord et centrale, Sónar,
etc...), dans divers centres et avec d'autres artistes : arts éléctroniques
(CICV, Fresnoy, V2_Lab Rotterdam, KHM-Cologne, Eléonore Hellio,
David Larcher, Franck Ancel...), poésie sonore (Serge Pey,
Henri Chopin, Michel Giroud, Joël Hubaut, Jörg Piringer...),
danse contemporaine (Faustin Linyekula, Valentine Verhaeghe). Fondateur
en 1994 de l'association Erratum Musical à Besançon
(concerts-performances, poésie sonore, expositions), il continue
d'organiser épisodiquement des évènements poétiques
expérimentaux et des expositions.
LEIF ELGGREN works in several media and techniques. Have made exhibitions
and presentations of his work in different contexts. Have since
a long time back ongoing collaborations with collegues like CM von
Hausswolff, Kent Tankred and Thomas Liljenberg. October-November
2000 he presented his retrospective exhibition "Flown Over
By An Old King" at Färgfabriken, Stockholm. 2001 and 2003
he took part (together with von Hausswolff) in the Venice Biennale.
Recently he released his new book Genealogy on Firework
Further information about Elggren's work can be found below:
Kingdoms of Elgaland-Vargaland
Starting to write at age 13, Michael Contreras aka MICHAEL 9 realized
that this alone was not enough of a creative expression to fill
his needs, so in his early 20's he began experimenting with sound
to alleviate extreme negative emotional states. This progressed
into incorporating various elements as part of his performances:
handouts, visuals, sound and confrontation. The majority of his
work deals with the individuals struggle with social identity and
its various restrictions, especially in regards to politics, religion
and psychology. Since 1995 Contreras has performed globally almost
200 shows under various names: Trucido , Death Squad and MK9 (current
project). He has produced more than 40 audio, video, and film releases
that have been distributed internationally.
GORDON MONAHAN's works for piano, loudspeakers, video, kinetic sculpture,
and computer-controlled sound environments span various genres from
avant-garde concert music to multi-media installation and sound
art. As a composer and sound artist, he juxtaposes the quantitative
and qualitative aspects of natural acoustical phenomena with elements
of media technology, environment, architecture, popular culture,
and live performance. Monahan began performing in public as a member
of various rock bands in Ottawa, Canada (1968-73). Since 1978, he
has performed and exhibited at numerous performance spaces, galleries,
and festivals. Early in his career, he specialized as a pianist,
performing John Cage's Etudes Australes, premiering pieces by James
Tenney and Udo Kasemets, and composing extended works for acoustic
piano (Piano Mechanics, 1981) and amplified prepared piano (This
Piano Thing, 1989). The renowned composer John Cage once said, "At
the piano, Gordon Monahan produces sounds we haven't heard before."
In his development of myriad radical cinematic languages over his
long filmmaking career, STAN BRAKHAGE frequently promoted a profound
aesthetics which frequently positioned intense silences as ground
for his complex and subtle visual compositions. In his interest
in non-verbal expression, he was greatly inspired by music and his
rare forays into sound filmmaking stand as some of the most unique
sound/image statements in the history of cinema. Activating the
Medium's program presents a survey of this work, including Boulder
Blues and Pearls and…, Fire of Waters, Christ Mass Sex Dance,
Crack Glass Eulogy, Kindering, "…" (Reel 5), and
Passage Through (A Ritual).