Pretty Gritty #4

Sunday August 25, 2013

alternate ecologies

The fourth iteration explores environments both natural and digital—habitats of interconnection and symbiosis. Kate Carr delicately interweaves islands, ice and instrumentals; Sam James (video) & Melissa Hunt (sound) reanimate the artefacts of desert and rainforest; Ollie Bown creates a new world of autonomously interrelating digital frequencies; and Andrew Gadow links sound and vision in a cannibalistic battle to the signal death.


Kate Carr

Kate Carr makes experimental ambient music and is the founder of the Flaming Pines label. Her work looks at the complex relationships we forge with the natural world, and the myriad of incomplete ways we attempt to connect and re-connect with ideas of nature and culture. Carr's music combines field recordings, and snippets from an ever increasing instrument collection which includes tanpuras, harps, guitars, rusty bells and a new glockenspiel. Her most recent album is Landing Lights which was released in March on Flaming Pines, and she has two forthcoming releases planned for 2013, Songs from a cold place based on her recent residency in Iceland, and Dark Days on the UK label Somehow.

Ollie Bown

Ollie Bown is a researcher, programmer and electronic music maker. He creates and performs music as one half of the duo Icarus, and performs regularly as a laptop improviser in electronic and electroacoustic ensembles. He has worked with musicians such as Tom Arthurs, Lothar Ohlmeier and Maurizio Ravalico of the Not Applicable Artists, and Brigid Burke and Adem Ilhan of Fridge. Icarus' 2012 album Fake Fish Distribution was released in 1000 unique digital variations, presenting a new angle on ownership and uniqueness in digital media artefacts. The band have produced remixes for electronic music pioneers such as Four Tet, Murcof, Caribou and EclecticMethod/ChuckD and recently produced software for an experimental live performance by Aphex Twin, premiered at the Barbican Hall in London in 2012. Ollie has performed at international festivals such as Sonic Acts (Amsterdam), the Sonic Arts Network Expo (UK) and AudioVisiva (Milan). He has designed interactive sound for installation projects by Squidsoup and Robococo, at venues such as the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney, the Oslo Lux Festival, the Vivid Festival, Sydney, and the Kinetica Art Fair, London.

In his research role he is local co-chair of the 2013 International Conference on Computational Creativity and of the Musical Metacreation Workshop and events series.

He developed and maintains the Beads computer music library for Processing/Java.

Samuel James & Melissa Hunt

Sam James has worked as a video artist and filmmaker for performance since 1995. He has been a designer and collaborator on over 200 performance works developing paradoxical languages between performance and projection. He has been a video artist with Performance Space and many other theatre and dance companies. In 2012 he completed an MFA Research at COFA, UNSW on Digital Animism. He is interested in where the phenomenology of artifice intersects with real space and in the re-animation of inanimate forms. He has been commissioned to make video works for Campbelltown Arts Centre, Performance Space, Artspace and Reeldance Festival of Dance on Screen. This current work is based on Artifact Cartoons, a body of work made in the desert and rainforest in 2012.

Melissa Hunt is a composer/musician from Sydney. She works in various contexts including theatre, film, surround sound, live performance and installation. Recent works include sound design and composition for PACT Theatre productions Harvest, Beguiled and Bully Beef Stew. Melissa is interested in the theatre of sound and its transformative qualities. She interplays arrangements of sounds, natural and artificial, with references to old and new music. Her work has been described as “Dr Caligari becomes cyber futurist Blake’s 7”. At Pretty Gritty she will do some live rendering of the her soundtrack for Sam James’ 3D video work Artifact Cartoons (2012).

Andrew Gadow

Andrew’s work has previously been described as a “sensory manifestation” of “transcoded audiovisual art," he is typically known to produce synesthetic “audiovisual work situated at the point of breakdown of sound and image” by “creating images out of sound data and sound out of image data.”

Arising from his studio after a relative hiatus from performing Andrew plans to undertake an ambitiously complex framework of patching and feedback loops. By reappraising the function of various electronic devices, namely video effects generators, audio effects generators, audio sequencers and modular audio synthesisers. Technologies will be reinterpreted to produce sound and video in both native and opposing formats. In this instance typically (for the artist) using the 50hz hum of a video signal as audio, whilst also replacing a fragile 1990s PC with consumer available ‘bent’ circuits to interpret audio as a video signal.

Warning: Photosensitive individuals are advised that this performance will contain flashes of light between 3 and 60 cycles per second (Hz).