soundart and beyond: performance, installation, fixed media
Delighted to say that my performance piece Unwitting Scores has made it into an amazing collection of works curated by Poulomi Usurp Desai for the Google Cultural Institute from material in the British Music Collection at Sound And Music on occasion of International Women’s Day. It also features works by the fab Magz Hall, Riz Maslen, Ain Bailey and many other amazing women! Find it here.
My Radio Arts commission Morse Code Choir, a composition made from historical events throughout the 20th century translated into sonified Morse Code can be heard on Resonance FM on 11th March, and for a month afterwards via youarehear.
Garrelfs’ gymnastic flexibility is remarkable. Her falsetto has this incredible pinball elasticity, zipping suddenly upward in playful excitement or sudden shock, reaching pitches that seem to shrink her into miniature.
After a fabulous residency at Tate Britain, inviting stories and stories around the theme of listening into my Listening Room earlier this month have now finished putting some further documentation online, including a link to the radio broadcast featuring extracts from the conversations. You can find it all here.
Jude Cowan Montague and myself have started a new venture, called The Potting Shed. It’s all about nurturing sounds and connections with a lighthearted approach to creating things on the hoof. Our first event takes place on 21st Februatry at 100 Years Gallery, London with John Bisset, Rabbit and Cos Chapman. Find out more details here.
Also a new concert has just come in: On Tuesday 17th March. 7.30pm I will be playing at Sonic Imperfections, Telegraph Hill Festival, St Catherine’s church, Pepys road, SE14. Also on the bill are Barrel, Bei Bei Wang and the Iyatra quartet. You can still listen to me in conversation with Sonic Imperfections curator Ian Faragher on Resonance FM.
Lastly, on Thursday 26 March I will give a talk entitled Voice and Material at the ICA, London as part of Critical Waves, a collaborative project around research and radio.
After my last album Bedroom Symphonies made it into a list of the best albums of 2014 on Future FM, my new release Breathing Through Wires is now out on the best net label of the year (according to CC Music), Chicago based PanY Rosas Discos. Breathing Through Wires features a selection of live improvised and processed voice performances, recorded in the UK between 2012 and 2014. Expect to hear a wide range of sounds and sonic modalities, from aggressive screams to delicate melodies, intricate rhythms to machine noises all constructed from and through live voice in an act of listening. Listen for free here.
For all my New York based friends:, my sound work Sofa Surfing USA will feature as part of Circuit Bridges at Gallery MC in NYC on January 29. Find the details here.
From 2nd-6th February 2015, during a residency for Tate Britain’s Radio City Season I will be developing the Listening Room. I’ll be collecting objects and stories around listening experiences and there will be an installation on Friday afternoon. I hope you will be able to join me!
Below a picture of myself impersonating German swimming dogs as part of Jude C Montague’s World News Oratorio 3 earlier this month. The video of the performance is now on YouTube. Although I look pretty much the same in my new favoured cardigan, the image right next to it is from last week’s performance at Hundred Years Gallery. I hope the recording from the event will make it onto my album of live recordings for Pan Y Rosas Discos I am editing at the moment. More very soon!
Lastly, I have put together a video from a performance of Unwitting Scores at IMT Gallery in July. The piece for voice and projector was a site-specific work commissioned for Forms of Ventriloquism curated by Maria Papadomanolaki.
I am currently in the process of developing Morse Code Choir, a Dreamlands Commission from Radio Arts. It is due in late January 2015 and will be broadcast on Radio Reverb, Resonance FM, Phonic FM, BCB, Radio Papesse, WGXC (90.7-FM) and Wave Farm Radio (1620-AM). You can find out more about the project here.
Some early live dates are coming in for next year: on 09 May I will be performing a new incarnation of (Talking) Space to Space at Switched On, The Beaney, Canterbury. It will make use of new space sounds put online by NASA.
I am very happy to say that on 8th November I will be participating in Jude Cowen Montague‘s WORLD NEWS ORATORIO 3 – The News Agents, St John on Bethnal Green, 200 Cambridge Heath Road, London E2 9PA, 8-10pm, free. This will be a spectacular peformance based on World News events from Reuters Television News – Jude works as an archivist for the Reuters and takes stories and remake them with music, poetry and visuals. Rumours have it that I will be appearing as German swimming dogs…
On Saturday 22nd November I will be playing like at the Hundred Years Gallery at an evening with Linear Obsessional Recordings. Other performances to look forward to will be by Longstone, Browne/Sanderson / Thompson and more to be confirmed.
Thanks to the lovely Andrew Ostler for his photographs from Sonic Imperfections. at the Montague Arms on 14th October. It was a fabulous night all round and I so enjoyed to be out with my laptop and make some music again! For more images click here and a recording will follow in due course.
A very insightful review of my album Bedroom Symphonies, has just appeared on Paul Margree‘s fab blog: “by muddling the links between memory, creativity and place, Garrelfs has created a beguiling and engrossing work”. Read the full review here!
A couple of dates for the diary: I am very happy to say that my film Objects & Process, made from research workshops conducted with Tansy Spinks, Mark-Peter Wright and Dan Scott, will be shown on 26th September as part of the Disposable Film Festival at the historic Cinema Museum, Elephant and Castle, London.
On October 14th I will play live at Sonic Imperfections, The Montague Arms, Queens Road, Peckham SE15 and on October 16th I will give a paper entitled “Beyond speech and song: exploring reactions to female vocal expressions in experimental sound” at the Sound::Gender::Feminism::Activism symposium at London College of Communication.
Delighted to say that as part of their September issue, The Wire feature a piece about Reflections on Process in Sound in their Unofficial Channels section. You can read it here. Thanks to all the artists and their fabulous contribution that elicited this interest in the first place!
The next issue of the journal will be ready by the 20th September and feature the following contributions: Felicity Ford will explore how wool and sound come together in her project KNITSONIK; Viv Corringham will give an account of how her ongoing series Shadow-walks came about, as an amalgam of singing and walking; Michelle Lewis-King is going to talk about her Pulse Project which combines accupuncture with sound; Jez Riley French will reflect on 3 trips he took this year to record telefericas, geological dissolves and other fascinations in Italy and Iceland; Jo Hyde will consider his take on visual music.
Bedroom Symphonies, my new album on Linear Obsessional Recordings is out now. It contains eight compositions made from voice practice sessions during a number of tours and residencies. It’s available as a limited edition CD (with a couple of signed mini photos thrown in) and as a name-your-price download from linearobsessional.bandcamp.com/album/bedroom-symphonies. You can read the accompanying booklet with an essay by Brandon LaBelle at issuu.com
Also, on 24th July I will be participating in Forms of Ventriloquism at IMT Gallery, an event curated by Maria Papadomanolaki with a commissioned performance entitled Unwitting scores. It is based on creative responses to exploratory sound workshops of London locations set up by Maria. More here.
An extract from a live performance at the Barbican Centre (a Hack the Barbican event curated by Music Hackspace) in summer 2013 has just been released on the compilation VOIX BRUTES | Vol.I on Audition Records.
I have decided to my make my back catalogue available via irisgarrelfs.bandcamp.com for free/name your price. At the moment you can download my album Specified Encounters and a single track called Stimung. More will be added over time.
Lastly, Reflections on Process in Sound has a very nice looking new home at reflections-on-process-in-sound.net. Issue 3 is expected later this summer with contributions by Felicity Ford, Viv Corringham and more.
A fab review of Brixton Lullaby, a collaboration between Viv Corringham and myself, featured on For Syria has appeared, saying it’s an “out-there vocal duet…spooky and atmospheric and joyful all at the same time.”
For Syria is part of Richard’s Sanderson’s Syria relief effort campaign, read the whole review here. You can listen and buy it here, but only until 1st June: http://linearobsessional.bandcamp.com/album/for-syria
I am playing a free free low-key concert at Full Stop in London’s Brick lane this Sunday. It’s a duet with the amazing Jude Cowan Montague. After our last excursion at Scaledown a few weeks ago, where we vocally responded to each other’s live drawings (which was fun but also a bit mad, see pics below) – we will aim for something a little more musical this time. But then again, who knows… Find out more here.
Lastly, I’m chuffed to bits: Reflections on Process in Sound VOL2 had 500 downloads in the first month! A big thanks to all contributors and readers!
Finally, the second issue of Reflections on Process in Sound, the magazine I curate to explore sound arts process, has made it online. It contains an interview with Brandon LaBelle by Anna Raimondo, a reflection about sight-specific performance by Tansy Spinks, a conversation between Lucia Farinati and Claudia Firth considering process on the cusp of curating and creating, plus more! Find it here.
I have added some documentation from my recent residency with Tansy Spinks to the website, find a video and more at acts-re-acts-blog.
From a little further back is this video of me introducing my piece In A Day’s Work at the Tin Tabernacle in February: youtube.com/watch?v=29Z6TRAoX4Y.
I’ve added a new live date to the diary, a duo with Jude CM at the Full Stop Café, Brick Lane, London, on 18 May from 8pm. It’s free, and other artists include Sarah Doyle and Stewart Keith.
Below are some images of my recent site-specific performance at SonicCueb festival. courtesy of John Kannenberg. Find some more, including the gathering of the material at flickr.
For April I have just confirmed another outing of my audio-visual performance project Traces in/of/with Sound. It will take place at the Horse Hospital in London as part of a night featuring various takes on extended cinema performance. More details in the diary. A fixed-screen version from a recent installation at GV Art can be found here.
A third album this year will be released on Chicago based netlabel Pany Rosas Discos, featuring a selection of live performance extracts spanning 10 years or so. No house though.
I’m delighted to say that my locative mobile phone project “In A Day’s Work – two sound walks with a twist” will feature as part of a sound art event at the Tin Tabernacle on 27th February. You can play with the piece via my website http://irisgarrelfs.com/in_a_days_work. Find the Facebook event page here. Enjoy!
A new Sprawl night has been confirmed, celebrating site-related works at Troyganic, Hoxton on 20th March 2014. It features murmer live, fresh from his project with Felicity Ford at Audiograft, my film Twine, a collaboration between Steve Beresford, Blanca Regina and Jack Goldstein, plus a solo set by Matthias Kispert.
This is going to be a year of releases! In addition to my album Bedroom Symphonies, due out in May on Linear Obsessional an album of installation works has been confirmed for June on net label Stasisfield. Its provisional title is Disembodied. Thanks for asking me John! And…. more releases tbc.
Happy New Year! With a bit of time on my hand over the x-mas break I have finally managed to upload a film made during a residency at the Institute for Contemporary Arts in Celje, Slovenia, entitled Twine. This was quite a while back but you can see it now at http://irisgarrelfs.com/twine.
Another older project is coming out of the woodwork, in fact a series of them, compiled into an album for Linear Obsessional this spring. I have no title for it yet, but what I do know is that it will contain a series of stereo compositions made from hotel-room voice practice sessions during various tours and residencies in various countries in the last 8 years or so. Thanks for asking me Richard!
Also on Linear Obsessional find a 2-min contribution to Button Box which contains 46 re-workings of Richard Sanderson’s recent album Air Buttons. It’s called eating through wires and you know why when you download it for free here.
I’m very happy to announce that Tansy Spinks and I have been selected for a collaborative residency at Wimbledon Space as part of ACTS RE-ACTS Festival, organised by Wimbledon College of Arts to set up a debate about contemporary performance in fine art and theatre. It will take place from 25/2/14-26/3/14 and Tansy and I will have fun exploring collaborative, site specific sound performance through objects and improvisation. We played with similar ideas during a one-day workshop last year, and it will be very interesting to see where this may lead to. Expect a call for participation early next year!
As of December I am working with artist Michelle Lewis-King on extending her Pulse Project into the vocal realm. Basically, she’ll stick some acupuncture needles into me and I’ll scream…. Looking forward to it! Btw, a very interesting description of the project, and thinking about touching as listening, can be found in the Journal of Sonic Studies.
An extract from my performance at the Barbican this summer is to be released as part of the compilation Voix Brutes on Audition Records. More details soon.
It seems a project I have participated in has made it into this book: E:vent Archive and Related Material 2003-2011, edited by Colm Lally, available from online art bookshop (and not Amazon…) Unbound.
Last but not least, I have added a few images from the Seeing Sound conference in Bath to flickr.com - including the fields around University. It’s been a great weekend, in and out of lecture halls and performances spaces!
I will be performing an acoustic duet with Viv Corringham at GV Art in London on 12th December. It’s part of a Sprawl event. Also playing are Douglas Benford with Angharad Davies and Phil Durrant with Dimitra Lazaridou-Chatzigoga. The last time Viv and I played together was in 2007 at my studio in Brixton, an extract of which recently featured at as part of Museruole. More details here.
I’ll be giving a paper entitled Traces in/of/with sound: an experience of audio-visual space at Seeing Sound at Bath University. The symposium takes place on 23-34 November and I’ll be speaking on the Sunday. One day to warm up… The paper explored ideas of an interestingly complex joint space emerging between multi-channel sound and screen-based images. I haven’t been able to find any literature on this as yet, so I am hoping this may stimulate an interesting debate!
An installation version of Traces in/of/with sound will feature as part of the sound exhibition NOISE and Whispers at GV Art from 8 November – 14 December 2013. Very much looking forward to adapting the piece to a new home!
I have just uploaded a video from my recent performance at the Barbican to vimeo. Madness in action, or as one audience member kindly wrote to me after the performance:
As the man in the black moleskin jacket said: “Iris bridges the gap between the digital and the organic”. Yes, but she does a lot lot more. She peels back the layers of higher cognitive functionality, the verbal, the rational, the conscious, and gives voice to Radio Amygdala, to Hippocampus FM….to the primeval wellspring of the Creative Urge, the limbic system – the so-called ‘lizard brain’….unleashing a cacophonous riot of hoots, burbles, shrieks, clanks and howls that is as joyously exuberant as it is unnervingly disturbing. Raw sound – unrefined, instinctive, spontaneous and uncontrollable. Forming into clumps and chains and repetitions. A huge cathartic outpouring. The sounds of the jungle. The sounds of the madhouse. The sounds of the factory floor. Iris asks us what music is. And then she tells us the answer.
Here is the what he meant (I presume…):
Also, some very fun images from the concert at Hack the Barbican can be seen on Flickr. The pictures were taken by Peter Smith and you can see them here. It includes the image below which I am calling Music for Airports….
A new London date has been added to the diary: Sunday 14th July from 4pm, an event part of the European season of Live-looping festivals, curated by Georgina Brett. Strongroom Bar, 120-124 Curtain Road, London EC2A 3SQ. More information can be found on facebook.
As with last year, June has been turning into a very busy month! I am very happy to say that this includes a piece that I have made years ago with Viv Corringham as part of Museruole, a track with the fab title of Who says banshees have no fun, which can be downloaded here.
There also is a live performance of Traces in/of/with Sound at Aural Detritus Festival in Brighton and the 9-channel piece Remembering Worlds (made in collaboration with Peter McKerrow, Robbie Judkins and Charlotte Desborough) for the BeOpen Sound Portal. It’s a piece made around 2001: A Space Odyssey and features me singing the Blue Danube (very briefly thankfully, sounds we have termed R2D2, and a brief rocket-ship-lift-0ff experience, amongst other things. We will have a panel discussion about the making of this piece at the Sounding Space symposium, University of the Arts London, which incidentally features keynotes by Bill Fontana and John Drever.
Also happening in June are my piece override, which will be part of Camberwell Arts Festival and can be enjoyed in buses throughout that time plus a paper at Sound, Sight, Space and Play symposium, DeMontford University Leicester.
Have a look at the events diary for the details of all these activities.
Anyone remember the Be Open Sound Portal created by Arup launched at last year’s London Design Festival in Trafalgar square? This year the portal is migrating to Chelsea as part of a University of the Arts London project, and LCC is putting together a 80 min programme around the theme Sound, Place, Memory with three student compositions and two artist compositions. I am delighted to say that I am creating one of the former and currently selecting a number of collaborators for the venture. More soon.
As with last year Dan Scott had invited me to make sound installations with his fabulous MA students from the Central School of Speech and Drama.Here are some pictures for you, although sadly no sound. flickr.com.
Also, I have lent my German language skills to a work by my good friend Andrea Gabriele, the piece Raus/Outside, which forms part of the video/book Biografia Di Te/Biography Of You. You can hear an extract for free on sound cloud, Released now on Ode Ogni Dove Edizioni.
Just back from a fab few days at Open Provocation in Cornwall, and with the pictures to prove it too. See them here. Great weather, great people, great music! Thanks to Robert Curgenven for putting it all together A review raved about my making trancelike monkey noises, which is just the ticket – as long as they don’t say I look like one too (there there is vanity for you!) Enjoy: artcornwall.org.
On April 18th I’ll be playing at Open Provocation, a festival taking place in Polruan, Cornwall between the 17th-20th April. There is a fab double CD for sale to help fund the event, which contains exclusive material from the likes of Lee Patterson, Robert Curgenven, myself and many others, costing just £10! For more information, check recordedfields.net/festival.
My piece override will be part of Camberwell Arts Festival, happening from 15 – 23 June 2013. Over the same weekend I will be talking about and performing Traces in/of/with sound at the Aural Detritus Festival at the Phoenix Brighton. More on both shortly.
A little while ago I was invited by Mexican composer Israel Martínez to contribute to his brilliant project In Memoriam alongside other artists such Francisco López, Murcof, Janek Schaefer, Philippe Petit, Simon Whetham and many more interesting folk. The piece is based on Israel’s experience strolling throughout the eccentric cemetery Jardines del Humaya in Culiacan (Mexico), capturing shocking messages that relatives and friends leave to their dead printed on canvas. You can now download this for free via http://www.suplex.mx.
An excerpt of my piece Room With A View has been published as part of Ex-trauma, part of the Experiments and Intensities series published by Winchester University Press, which is curated by Annette Arlander, Yvon Bonenfant and Mary Agnes Covey-Krell. Find out more here.
I have just spotted a nicely mayhem-video from my recent performance at the Liverpool Biennial. The sound is a bit abysmal as it’s directly from the camera, but, it’s fun:
There are also some images from the recent Utrophia concert with Tom Scott, Jonas Gustafsson, Adam Bohman, Zolan Quobble, Sara Ragab, Michael Shaw and David Aylward on flickr. Pictures from the Aural Detritus concert in Brighton can be found on my facebook page and way nicer ones on that of Andrea Shambolic.