Iris Garrelfs is a composer/performer intrigued by change, fascinated with voices and definitely enamoured by technology. She often uses her voice as raw material, which she transmutes into machine noises, choral works or pulverised “into granules of electroacoustic babble and glitch, generating animated dialogues between innate human expressiveness and the overt artifice of digital processing” as the Wire Magzine put it.
Described as the Diamanda Galas of Glitch, Iris’ training into creating through voice began very early on. Her parents sang in the village choir, and would often practice at home with Iris making up new melodies, 2nd and 3rd voices to whatever was being sung. She got into the attractions of technology as a teenager, stumbling across her dad’s pulp si-fi magazines. Iris is still waiting for an implant that will siphon off her sonic nerve impulses, fragments of melody, rhythm and correlation floating around in her body and brain. A vital part of her work, be it using voice or other sound material, is improvisation and the use of random elements, the ephemeral fragility and risk implied in giving up control to the moment, a sonic singularity moving through space.
Moulding complex sonic or multi-sensorial collages, her work has been compared to artists such as Yoko Ono, Henri Chopin, Joan La Barbara, Meredith Monk and Arvo Part. Pieces and performances have featured in exhibitions, festivals and as part of residencies internationally, including International Computer Music Conference (NY, 2010), GSK Contemporary at the Royal Academy Of Arts (London 2008/09), Gaudeamus Live Electronics Festival, (Amsterdam 2007), and Visiones Sonoras (Mexico 2006).
Iris works solo as well as in collaboration with other artists, for example with Thomas Koner in his Futurist Manifest, Robert Lippok (To Rococo Rot), Kaffe Matthews, Scanner, Si-cut.db, the improvising group Symbiosis Orchestra, or artist collective Urbania. A few works have been made available through recordings, for example her album Specified Encounters, released on the French label Bip-Hop, her the radio project ”(Talking) Space To Space” on the German art-label lich-tung – she is currently working on a globe-spanning installation version.
Music making aside aside, Iris is the co-founder of London based underground playground and test tube for current sound Sprawl. Artists featured have included Kim Cascone, Scanner, Kaffe Matthews, Christian Fennesz, Taylor Dupree and more. She is a regular on London’s soundart radio station Resonance FM and sits on the Sonic Arts Network Board of Trustees.
As an outspoken person, Iris gets invited as a speaker and panelist at conferences and events in the UK and abroad, most recently at Visiones Sonoras in Mexico. Iris has appeared on TV, for example and ARTE TV in “Well Tempered Computer – Are Computers able to compose” and most recently on ITV‘s Mixmasters TV. This project has been released by Moonshine in the US and has received a nomination for Best Music DVD at the Dancestar Awards.
CV can be found here: Iris CV