Ars Nova Workshop

Related upcoming events

  • 06/27/2019 8:00 PM - 06/27/2019 8:00 PM
    Please join Ars Nova Workshop and the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania for Dreamweapons, a series of performances celebrating the multivalent influences of Tony Conrad. Conrad was a central figure in numerous experimental film, music, and performance communities from the early 1960s until his death in 2016. These events are presented in conjunction with ICA’s presentation of Introducing Tony Conrad: A Retrospective, the first large-scale museum survey devoted entirely to the artist.
    HEVM is a new group comprised of three distinct voices that hail from disparate parts of the experimental pop landscape: MV Carbon, Eve Essex, and Hunter Hunt-Hendrix.
    MV Carbon (cello, electronics, amplified objects, magnetic tape) performs as a solo artist and is a founding member of noise duo Metalux, which has released music on Load Records, Hanson Records, and Kill Rock Stars’ late, great experimental sublabel 5RC. Carbon collaborated with Conrad on multiple occasions in the past, including as part of an exhibition at the Tate Modern.
    Based in Brooklyn, Eve Essex (alto sax, piccolo) is a solo artist whose work straddles the nexus between jazz, classical, and drone. In addition to her solo work, Essex plays in the experimental quartet Das Audit and the avant-garde ambient trio Hesper, which can be heard on the compilation Mono No Aware.
    Hunter Hunt-Hendrix (guitar, electronics) is best known as leader of the transcendental black metal band Liturgy, which has been dogged by controversy from certain segments of the metal community since its inception. Hunt-Hendrix also releases glitchy shamanic rap-metal under the name Kel Valhaal. This past year, he presented Origin of the Alimonies, the prologue to a multi-part video opera cycle entitled OIOION, which featured a live score from a 12-piece chamber orchestra.
    David Grubbs has released fourteen solo albums and appeared on more than 190 releases, the most recent of which is Creep Mission (Blue Chopsticks, 2017).  In 2000, his The Spectrum Between (Drag City) was named “Album of the Year” in the London Sunday Times.  He is known for his cross-disciplinary collaborations with poet Susan Howe, visual artists Anthony McCall and Angela Bulloch, and choreographer Jonah Bokaer, and his work has been presented at, among other venues, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, MoMA, the Tate Modern, and the Centre Pompidou.  Grubbs was a member of the groups Gastr del Sol, Bastro, and Squirrel Bait, and has performed with the Red Krayola, Will Oldham, Tony Conrad, Pauline Oliveros, and Loren Connors, and many others.
  • 07/13/2019 8:00 PM - 07/13/2019 8:00 PM
    Dreamweapons: A Musical Afterlife of Tony Conrad
    Please join Ars Nova Workshop and the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania for Dreamweapons, a series of performances celebrating the multivalent influences of Tony Conrad. Conrad was a central figure in numerous experimental film, music, and performance communities from the early 1960s until his death in 2016. These events are presented in conjunction with ICA’s presentation of Introducing Tony Conrad: A Retrospective, the first large-scale museum survey devoted entirely to the artist.
    Visual artist, composer, and performer Charlemagne Palestine has been an icon of American experimental music since the 1960s—in part due to his ritualistic physical performances, his silk scarves, and his more than 18,000 stuffed animals.
    As a teenaged card-carrying member of the New York counterculture, Palestine played conga and bongos for Allen Ginsburg, Kenneth Anger, and Tiny Tim. However, his early focus was carillon bells. During his tenure as a carillonneur at St. Thomas Episcopal Church, Palestine met Conrad, when his improvisations on the bells caught Conrad’s ear. Soon Palestine was studying voice with Pandit Pran Nath and collaborating with Conrad, as well as a wide circle of artists, including Rhys Chatham, Terry Jennings, and  Simone Forti.
    Conrad and Palestine will be forever linked as two of the more independently-minded and humorous pioneers of minimalism, even as Palestine prefers to describe his approach as “maximalist” due to the intense nature of his compositions.Whether employing Bösendorfer piano, harpsichord, carillon bells, electronic drones, or organ, Palestine’s repetitive and physical approach to sound is intended to fully activate the voice of the instrument.
    In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Palestine and Tony Conrad were frequent collaborators but did not formally team up for a release until three decades later. In 2005, the two mavericks performed together in Brussels on the same day that the Pompidou Center in Paris honored recently deceased French musique concrete composer Luc Ferrari. The resulting album, An Aural Symbiotic Mystery(Sub Rosa),remains true to its title.
  • 07/21/2019 3:00 PM - 07/21/2019 3:00 PM
    Dreamweapons: A Musical Afterlife of Tony Conrad
    Please join Ars Nova Workshop and the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania for Dreamweapons, a series of performances celebrating the multivalent influences of Tony Conrad. Conrad was a central figure in numerous experimental film, music, and performance communities from the early 1960s until his death in 2016. These events are presented in conjunction with ICA’s presentation of Introducing Tony Conrad: A Retrospective, the first large-scale museum survey devoted entirely to the artist.
    New Zealand-based artist and musician Michael Morley is best known as 1/3 of the Dead C, an enduring free rock unit that has pushed the proto- and post-punk templates to exhilarating points of disintegration for the past three decades. Morley has also recorded music as Gate, the Righteous Yeah, the F—k Chairs, Thin Wrist, and Sun Valley, as well as under his own name.
    In tribute to Four Violins, Tony Conrad’s landmark 1964 composition, Morley will present the 1-hour-plus installation Music for the Never Quartet: Composition for a quartet of bowed acoustic guitars, which explores the sonic possibilities of the acoustic guitar as a pure resonant amplifier of sound.
    In this project, four acoustic guitars are placed on solid wooden furniture, then electronic bows are placed upon the strings of each guitar. The guitar bodies amplify the bowed strings, which the furniture further amplifies, creating a lush and generous sound field. The quartet will modify the collective sound with the addition of wooden blocks, bowls, and rods placed atop and underneath the instruments.
    The audience is encouraged to move around the space so they can experience the sound from multiple vantage points. However, Morley explains that “remaining in one place allows for the shifting time signatures of the different vibrating strings to wash [over] the listener.” Concert-goers are also welcome to record the performance on their mobile devices to be played back as loops during the installation.
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