FRANCISCO LÓPEZ / BETH BRADFISH: UNTIED / UNITED
Wednesday, June 27th, ISSUE and Harvestworks present acclaimed sonicist, composer, and biologist Francisco López making a rare New York appearance, his first at ISSUE since 2014. With roots in industrial music, and a penchant for recording everything from rainforests to New York skyscrapers, López’ work concerns complex phenomenological referencing to the “substance of reality — in texture, in complexity, in richness, in virtual space. Tickets are limited to 75 seats, with Lopez’ work presented in multi-channel sound, in the dark, with a blindfolded audience.
The evening also features sound artist Beth Bradfish presenting “Untied / United,” an improvisational work reflecting the theme and spirit of a site-specific installation of the same name, which is part of the Harvestworks’ TEAM Lab Artworks and Experiences 2018 Exhibit in Nolan Park, Governors Island. The improvisation brings together the trio of Diane Moser (piano), Max Johnson (bass) and Bradfish herself. Together they explore the sounds featured in the installation and offer the audience an opportunity to create with them. The theme of “Untied / United” refers to the fragile and tenacious quality of close relationships.
Francisco López is internationally recognized as one of the major figures of the sound art and experimental music scene. For almost forty years he has developed an astonishing sonic universe, absolutely personal and iconoclastic, based on a profound listening of the world. Destroying boundaries between industrial sounds and wilderness sound environments, shifting with passion from the limits of perception to the most dreadful abyss of sonic power, proposing a blind, profound and transcendental listening, freed from the imperatives of knowledge and open to sensory and spiritual expansion. He has realized hundreds of concerts, projects with environmental recordings, workshops and sound installations in over seventy countries of the six continents. His extensive catalog of sound pieces (with live and studio collaborations with hundreds of international artists) has been released by nearly 400 record labels / publishers worldwide. He has been awarded four times with honorary mentions at the competition of Ars Electronica Festival and is the recipient of the Qwartz Award 2010 for best sound anthology.
Beth Bradfish is a composer and sound artist whose goal is to bring her audience as close to sound as possible – like a musician holding a cello to his or her heart. The permeability and physical intimacy of sound is the foundation of experiences she creates and invites her audiences to participate in. She composes for chamber ensembles, orchestras as well as installations and sound objects she designs. Bradfish often collects field recordings, analyzes their characteristics, and then edits and transforms those sounds to create compositions that subtly engage audiences and visitors. Sometimes she invites audience participation in the music making by asking the audience to play soundfiles they download to Smartphones. She also creates sound objects that function as instruments. For example, Exhale Sound Bed (2017) creates sound that gently circles the body while the physical vibration comes and goes depending on the area of the bed activated by transducers and microelectronics. With the Harvestworks project Bradfish, collaborating with visual artist Connie Noyes, treats the entire installation space as a resonating and interactive environment.
Diane Moser is a sublime and powerful musician who has the innate ability to draw things out of expert players that you haven’t heard them do before” (Robert Bush, San Diego Reader). As a featured performer and composer performing with ensembles across the country including jazz bands big and small, chamber music and more, Moser has worked with Mark Dresser, Marty Ehrlich, Mark Helias, Gerry Hemingway, Howard Johnson, Oliver Lake, Charles McPherson, Diamanda Galas, and many others. She is currently on faculty at the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music and the Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA Music Composition Program. Moser’s skill and talent have been recognized with numerous awards, grants, and fellowships, including from Chamber Music America,New Music USA, the MacDowell Colony, Virginia Center for the Arts, and the Millay Arts Colony. A versatile and in-demand talent, Moser has worked with dancers, written scores for award-winning documentary films, composed for musical theater, and more. Since 1996 she has been the music director/contributing composer/pianist for her 17-piece Diane Moser’s Composers Big Band, dedicated to developing and presenting new music for big band. Her other groups include the Diane Moser Quintet, and the Diane Moser Birdsong Trio. “Moser brings an expertly-honed musical sensibility to all her composing and playing: one characterized by meticulous attention to detail and a strong lyrical voice. Moser always puts the beauty of the music first” (Troy Dostert, All About Jazz).
Max Johnson is one of the most prolific and versatile musician/composers in music today” (All About Jazz). Max Johnson is a bassist, composer and bandleader based in New York City. Known for his big sound, eclectic style and prolific output, Johnson has made a name in the jazz and improvised music world, playing with legendary luminaries Anthony Braxton, John Zorn, Muhal Richard Abrams, in addition to becoming a first call bluegrass bassist, playing with legends Sam Bush, David Grisman, & the Traveling McCourys, as well as being a composer of chamber music, having his music performed by Mivos Quartet, and members of Bang on a Can. With 9 albums, and over fifteen hundred concerts under his belt, Johnson has proven to be an unparalleled force on the bass, and a unique, exhilarating voice as a composer.