Errant Bodies project space is dedicated to experimental work in sound, performance, voice and spatial practices. Through residencies, workshops, events and exhibitions, Errant Bodies emphasizes an engagement with process and dialogue, encouraging a dynamic and diverse approach to the sound arts. As a project space, it also intends to foster social and public activities, contributing to the creative scene in Berlin. It is organized and developed through its working group comprised of Berlin-based sound artists and researchers.
Sound art project by Ylva Bentancor
Opening: Saturday, September 5th, 2015 / 19.00h
Gallery hours: September 6, 7, 11, 12, 13 / 15:00 – 17:00h
"Tittytainment" was a term coined by Zbigniew Brzezinski, the National Security advisor of US president Jimmy Carter, essentially to convey the idea that a mixture of "intoxicating entertainment and sufficient nourishment" can "tranquilize the frustrated minds of the globe's population." The term gained currency during the famous first State of the World Forum held at San Francisco's Fairmont Hotel in 1995, where this idea was apparently proposed as the solution to the "20-80 society" of the 21st century.
I first found the word Tittytainment in the book “The Global Trap”(1997) by Hans-Peter Martin and Harald Schumann. They describe the expression like this:
"...The pragmatists in the Fairmont Hotel reduce the future to a pair of numbers and a term: "20 to 80" and "tittytainment". 20 percent of the working age population will be enough in the coming century to keep the world economy going. "More workers will not be needed", said magnate Washington SyCip. A fifth of all jobseekers will be enough to produce all the goods and perform all the top-flight services that the world society can afford.... What about the others? Will 80 percent of those willing to work be without a job? "Certainly"... The question in the future will be "to have lunch or be lunch", to eat or be devoured. ....The term "tittytainment" makes the rounds... The frustrated population of the world could be kept happy with a mixture of numbing entertainment and adequate food. The managers soberly discuss the possible doses and reflect how the wealthy fifth can employ the superfluous remnant.... The organizers of the three memorable days in the Fairmont imagined themselves underway to a new civilization. However, the direction envisaged by the assembled experts from the executive floors and science leads directly back into the pre-modern age... The world model of the future follows the formula 20 to 80. The one-fifth society is brewing in which the excluded will be immobilized with "tittytainment"."
There are many books written on the subject and people who try to spread information about this kind of phenomenon, who try to open our eyes to at least be a bit critical towards the values that rule the world today. We work hard, we consume loads, and we speak less and less about human values. Materialism is the new religion, we think we do need all this stuff for real. And in the flow of information that gets to us through all possible angles we have no longer the energy to question what is really happening. It is a tricky question, and to bring it up often generates a lot of resistance. People feel stressed about it, of course. And this project cannot claim to pass any truths, its all speculations and personal theories. But what the project wants to communicate is that we will not stop talking about it, we have to continue to reflect about how it looks and express our own feelings of being trapped in this Tittytainment-world, if there is one?
Ylva Bentancor is a Swedish sound artist and composer, with focus in telling sound stories about phenomena’s in the society to create lines of thoughts within the listeners using sounds/instruments as language. She graduated from the Royal College of Music in Stockholm in 2000, with a diploma in Composition. After graduating she where one of the founder and editors of the web magazine Tritonus.nu who later also took over and renewed the Swedish Contemporary music journal in Sweden, Nutida Musik (founded 1957). Between 2003 and 2006 Ylva worked in the department of Composition/conducting at the Royal College of Music, responsible for seminars of Aesthetics and mentor. She’s been involved in projects of many kinds, from school cooperation’s at the Modern Museum in Stockholm to sound art-projects in the Middle East, and in Europe.
ORIGINALFASSUNG#84: Tony Conrad
A co-operation of Errant Bodies & General Public in Exile
Saturday, August 15, 2015, 8:00 pm
Off site location: ACUD, Veteranenstrasse 21, 10119 Berlin
Errant Bodies and General Public cordially invite to an informal talk and conversation with video artist, musician and sound artist Tony Conrad.
Violin player Tony Conrad was one of the pioneers of New York minimalism, of microtonal music and of "deep listening". He worked in 1962 on La Monte Young's "Dream Music" project with the likes of John Cale and Angus MacLise (both future members of Velvet Underground). Despite having recorded very little (or in virtue of it), he remained the purest and most ascetic of the minimalists. His compositions were long tone pieces in just intonation for bowed strings, without any melodic development, notably Four Violins (1964), and his collaboration with Faust, Outside The Dream Syndicate (1972/1973), works which, in his own words, explored the border "between pitch and rhythm". After leaving Young's ensemble in 1965, he focused mainly on cinema, starting with "The Flicker" (1966), a key work in structuralist filmmaking. Since the early 90s, Conrad has been performing again with Faust, as well as collaborating with musicians Jim O’Rourke, Gastr del Sol, and the Dead C. In 2009 his work was exhibited at the Venice Biennale, MoMA, the Tate Modern, and elsewhere. He is represented by Galerie Daniel Buchholz and in New York by Greene Naftali Gallery.
ORIGINALFASSUNG is a series of talks and discussions based on an understanding of collaboration rather than competition motivated by the curiosity of strangers or visitors to tap into different fields, such as science, music, architecture, art, dance, choreography, theater, film, politics, design, media, economics, journalism. ORGINALFASSUNG was initiated by Geoff Garrison, Heimo Lattner and Oliver Baurhenn in 2003.
On Music Archives: Between Preservation and Appropriation
Listening session and discussion with Oswaldo Lares, Gilles Aubry, Peter Cusack and Christopher Kline, presented by Laura Jordan and Guillermo Lares
Saturday, July 18, 2015 / 17:00 – 20:00h
In parallel to the current exhibition Inside the Archive of Oswaldo Lares (1969-89) at Kinderhook & Caracas, this event will focus on material and political aspects of music documentation and preservation practices. After an introduction by Oswaldo Lares about his own collection of traditional Venezuelan music, Gilles Aubry will present elements from the “Paul Bowles Collection of traditional Moroccan Music” (1959). By evoking concrete aspects of these recording initiatives, such as technical, performative, social and archival ones, the participants will discuss the possibilities and limitation of such approaches for preservation purposes, as well as perspectives for creative and critical reappropriations of historical music collections today.
Oswaldo Lares (b. 1932, Maracaibo, Venezuela) began making weekly excursions from Caracas along rural roads spanning from Caribbean villages to the plains to the Amazon rainforest, intent on meeting those people who continued to embody Venezuela's musical heritage. Inspired by the diverse indigenous, African and European influences he found in each town, Lares began to document the musicians, dances and festivals in order to introduce them to a wider audience. In 1971 he acquired a portable Nagra reel-to-reel recorder with which he built an expansive audio archive over the next two decades.
Gilles Aubry is a Swiss sound artist based in Berlin. Informed by researches on cultural, material and historical aspects of sound productions, he uses field recordings, audio archives and interviews to create live performances and sound installations. www.earpolitics.net
Peter Cusack is a sound artist and (improvising) musician, and is also active as a field recording artist and a teacher. The focus of his current work – which he presents in appearances and performances, radio and CD productions, lectures, exhibitions and installations – is our man-made sound environment; the works’ categorical context is shaped by the conceptual approach of acoustic ecology. www.petercusack.org
Christopher Kline is a Berlin based artist, he is co-director/founder of the project space Kinderhook & Caracas. www.christopher-kline.com
Pham, Minh Duc
Presentation of works: Friday, July 10th – 18:00 - 21:00h
There are always edges to the operations of speech, peripheries by which other types of communication and contact can be imagined and produced. Considering these edges and peripheries, Errant Voices brings together sound works by students from the Hochschule für Gestaltung Karlsruhe. Developed through a semester-long course led by members of Errant Bodies, the works search for ways to manifest, perform or occupy creative ways of voicing.
Zwei Pflanzen, eine naturbelassen, die andere aus Plastik, stehen nebeneinander.
Die subtile (Video-)Projektion eines Textes löst ihre dekorative Funktion auf und lässt sie zu Akteuren im Raum werden. Es entsteht ein Dialog, der sich inhaltlich und formal auf einen Prosatext von Francis Ponge bezieht, in dem er das Dasein und die Aussagefähigkeit von Pflanzen beschreibt (in 'Im Name der Dinge' 1942). Nach Ponge drücken sich Pflanzen nur durch ihre Stellungen aus. Diese Ausdrucksform ist für ihn im Vergleich zur mündlichen und mimischen der Tiere, schriftlich. Ein Text, bestehend aus zahlreichen Wiederholungen, der sich wie das ständige Wachsen der Pflanzen, erweitert und durch Anhänge korrigiert. Die Textprojektion wird begleitet von einer Soundcollage, die auf die Künstlichkeit bzw. vermeintliche Natürlichkeit der beiden Objekte Bezug nimmt.
Two plants, one natural the other artificial, stand next to each other. A video projection of a dialogue changes their role from ordinary decoration objects into protagonists of the gallery space. The written conversation is based on a prose text by Francis Ponge in which he reflects upon the existence of plants and their possibilities of expressing themselves (in 'The Voice of Things' 1942). For Ponge, plants only express themselves "through their poses". Compared to oral and mimetic communication of animals, he sees this form of expression as a written one. A text consisting of many repetitions, which extends and corrects itself constantly. Next to the projection there is a sound collage which refers to the artificiality and the alleged naturalness of the two objects.
No Games on Private Land
Diese Installation ist eine Kollage von Verboten und Instruktionen die aus verschiedenen europäischen Städten stammen. Was bedeutet es für das Individuum, wenn er oder sie ständig Verhaltensregeln im öffentlichen Raum befolgen muss? Und was bedeutet dies für unsere Demokratie, wenn die Sphäre des Öffentlichen langsam in private Hand übergeht und somit gegebenenfalls Zusammenkünfte verhindert. Spielen ist fast überall nicht so gern gesehen.
A collage of instructions collected in various European cities, outlining how these instructions try to influence and regulate our behaviour in urban public or private-public spaces. What does potentially losing our public sphere mean for our democracy and capabilities in meeting others? Who has a right to space and who has not?
Games are not really welcome at all.
Stimmen/Voices: Kerstin Möller und Ernesto Estrella
Gleich. Semantische Zerlegung / Semantic disassembly
Gleich porträtiert den Prozess der semantik-offenen Sprachgenerierung, indem das Wort „gleich“ seiner semantischen Bedeutung enthoben wird. Der menschliche Akteur zerstört die Buchstabenkombination und setzt sie kontinuierlich durch die kalte Mechanik der Kombinatorik immer wieder neu zusammen. Durch die Interaktion des Betrachters verschwindet die akustische Ebene des Werkes in visuellen Ebene, wodurch ein Spiel mit der semantischen Ebene des Wortes "Gleich" ermöglicht wird.
Gleich portrays the process of semantic-open speech generation by relieving the German word "Gleich" of its semantic meaning. The letter combination is destroyed by the human actor over and over again and continually put back together through the cold mechanics of combinatorics. Through interaction with the viewer the acoustic level of the work disappears into a visual level, creating a semantic game of the German word "Gleich".
Pham, Minh Duc
Akustischer Spiegel / Acoustic mirror
Stell Dich in die Ecke und erhebe Deine Stimme! Zurückgedrängt in eine Ecke voller Reue und Scham, erkenne ich das Potenzial meiner Stimme. Auf und ab, laut und leise ertönt der Protest. Der Körper schwingt. Und wie es in die Enge klingt, schallt es wieder nach draußen. Das Gesicht bebt. Resonanz.
Go in the corner and raise your voice! Repressed in a corner full of repentance and shame, I recognize the importance of my voice. Up and down, loud and quiet sounds, the voice protests. The body is pulsating. And as it sounds in the narrowness, it sounds out. The entire face trembles. Resonance.
Auch wenn du durstig bist, wirst du im Pazifischen Ozean kein Trinkwasser bekommen / Even if you are thirsty, you will not get drinking water in the Pacific Ocean
Wie bist du hierher gekommen?
Was tust du hier?
Bewegst du dich unbewusst?
Folgst du einem Plan?
Bist du müde?
Im Pazifischen Ozean schwimmt ein Wal, welcher von seinen Artgenossen vermutlich nicht verstanden wird.
How did you come here?
What are you doing here?
Are you moving unconsciously?
Are you following a plan?
Are you tired?
There is a whale living in the Pacific Ocean which is presumably not understood by his fellow species.
Count and Strike and Spin
Marla Hlady in collaboration with Christof Migone
Opening reception: Monday June 29, 19:00h
From June 27th to July 5th, Hlady and Migone will inhabit the Errant Bodies Sound Art Space with a project that is somewhere between an installation, a performance and a residency. Together Hlady and Migone will compose, experiment, improvise, listen, alter, converse…over seven days as they explore what their band is in this particular space.
This residency project is based on an on-going premise for sound collaborations developed by Hlady in which she takes some element of a collaborator’s practice and mechanizes it. Hlady’s own mechanical instruments are also part of the mix. The project asks questions such as: What would it be like to be surrounded by an instrument (an instrument that fully embraces being an apparatus, an assemblage of parts)? What if some of these instruments were kinetic, moved on their own? And what would happen if this instrument, with all of its parts, could be mobile, moved to different resonant spaces as a way to explore a variety of acoustic sites? Migone’s Hit Parade performance was the starting premise for the present collaboration. In Migone’s Hit Parade microphones are used by live performers as crude, hammer-like instruments for percussion. Mechanizing an action raises questions about skills, labour, economy, duration and obsolescence. This mechanical band performs with both the limitations and the expanded control a machine and its computer program allows—in other words, methodically yet also haphazardly. As a band, in the collective rhythm produced by this ensemble of machines, the social side to sound making is foregrounded. Hlady complements the hitting microphones with mechanically spinning microphones. They will twirl, turn, shift and displace discussions about the project occurring throughout its run; they will wah-wah ideas around.
The work has 3 parts:
A microphone stand is placed in front of the window; microphones are attached to both ends of the boom arm. The stand has been modified to motorize the boom arm: the two microphones now move back and forth tapping the window. As one microphone hits, a read-out counts up to one million; as the other microphone hits, another read-out counts down. The microphones are amplified some of the time, unamplified at other times and provide a base rhythm for the overall project.
It takes approximately 57.87 days (1,388.8889 hours), 24 hours a day for this machine to become a millionaire.
Three identical microphone-hit-machines use microphones as percussion instruments. These machines are designed to run independently, controlled by a microprocessor; and they are designed to be manually adjusted through control dials and through various alterable appendages. Each day the percussion possibilities are altered and experimented with.
Three identical machines spin shotgun microphones at various speeds. These machines are designed to run independently, controlled by a microprocessor, or they can be controlled manually with a foot pedal.
Starting June 28 and ending July 4, a guest will participate in a conversation. Each conversation is recorded using untreated and treated microphones (i.e. the spinning microphone). This sound is processed and used in the space the following day as a sound element, again using the spinning microphones as a way to further process the sound.
Conversation schedule: Saturday/Sunday 16hr, weekdays 18hr
Sunday, June 28 – Gwen MacGregor + Lewis Nicolson
Monday, June 29 – Caleb Kelly + Kusum Normoyle
Tuesday, June 30 – Linnea Semmerling
Thursday, July 2 – Kristan Horton
Friday, July 3 – Emma Waltraud Howes
Saturday, July 4 – Heidi Sill + Michael Schultze
Marla Hlady draws, makes sculpture, works with sites and sounds and sometimes makes video. Hlady's kinetic sculptures and sound pieces often consist of common objects (such as teapots, cocktail mixers, jars) that are expanded and animated to reveal unexpected sonic and poetic properties often using a system-based approach to composition. She’s shown widely in solo and group shows in Canada, US, Italy, Britain, Norway and Iceland. She has mounted site works in such places as the fjords of Norway, a grain silo as part of the sound festival Electric Eclectic, an apartment window in Berlin, a tour bus in Ottawa, the Hudson’s Bay department store display window and an empty shell of a building. She also, at times, collaborates. Hlady completed her BFA at the University of Victoria, and her MFA at York University. She is currently an Associate Professor at the University of Toronto in the Department of Arts, Culture and Media and is represented by the Jessica Bradley Gallery.
Christof Migone is an artist, curator, teacher and writer. His research delves into language & voice, bodies & performance, intimacy & complicity, sound & silence, rhythmics & kinetics, translation & referentiality, stillness & imperceptibility, structure & improvisation, play & pathos, pedagogy & unlearning, failure & endurance. He is currently working with telephones as diaristic and synoptic vehicles, the raw material to make records as indexical performative objects of potentiality, and microphones as gestural and sculptural instruments that foment dissent. He co-edited the book Writing Aloud: The Sonics of Language (Errant Bodies Press, 2001) and his writings have been published in Aural Cultures, S:ON, Experimental Sound & Radio, Musicworks, Radio Rethink, Semiotext(e), Esse, Inter, Performance Research, etc. His writings on sound art are compiled in Sonic Somatic: Performances of the Unsound Body (Errant Bodies Press, 2012). He obtained an MFA from NSCAD and a PhD from the Department of Performance Studies at the Tisch School of the Arts of New York University. He lives in Toronto and is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Visual Arts at the University of Western Ontario.
Vocal Rhythms - from Recitation to Repetition & Resolution
Artist talk and performance by Morten Søndergaard & Marie Højlund
Sunday, June 14th, 2015 - 19:30h
The Danish composer and sound artist Marie Højlund and the Danish poet Morten Søndergaard have collaborated in many ways, but first and foremost through exploring the relationship between words, sound and music together. Morten has written the lyrics for two of Marie Højlund’s albums with Marybell Katastrophy and they both take part in all sorts of music and art projects in the active scene around the members of the band (that also include Jakob Schweppenhäuser, Emil Thomsen and Klaus Q Hedegaard Nielsen). In the talk and performance at Errant Bodies they will talk and perform both solo and together.
Marie Højlund explores the voice as a disruptive agent dissolving the divisions between inside and the outside and the way it is rendered and translated through other objects. The voice as a temporary rhythmic and fragile environment. Our most faithful and intimate companion but consistently a strange stranger. She will use her own voice through looping, distorting, layering and processing in her performance, as well as present projects where she engages citizens’ voices in art projects, as in the project Lys, Landskab og Stemmer (www.lysogstemmer.dk) where she and Elle-Mie Ejdrup Hansen collected 758 different voices in East Jutland reading Inger Christensens poem Lys (Light) aloud. The recordings were transformed into a 24-speaker outdoor composition presented in six different sites, each six hours long, one for each site, unfolded over six evenings in 2011.
// Video clip from one of the six evenings at Trehøje: https://vimeo.com/32379599
// Performance with a high school choir at a shopping mall in Aarhus: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eVLSKhqnbvI
Morten Søndergaard is a poet, but he works in many others fields but always on the base of words. He often works with repetition and looping as medium and he will reflect on this in his piece at Errant Bodies, as well on difference between or coincidence with sound and sense. He will literally play his books and he will give his own personal reading of Brandon LaBelle’s book "Lexicon of the Mouth”.
Marie Højlund (born 1979) is a sound artist and composer and has exhibited sound art installations around Denmark including Love Alley, Kunsthal Aarhus, Kunsten Aalborg, Roskilde Museum for Samtidskunst and Spor Festival. As a composer under the alias Marybell Katastrophy she has won critical acclaim, awards, received numerous grants and commissions, released several albums and played concerts and festivals in Denmark, Germany, Austria, England, Ireland, France and Italy including Roskilde Festival (DK) and Nordklang (AU). She is currently undertaking a PhD in Audio Design at The Department of Aesthetics and Communication at Aarhus University, Denmark. In her practice-based and artistic research she is particularly interested in exploring different strategies to create dynamic atmospheres with sound and voices integrated into the physical environment in shared spaces in the Danish hospital.
Morten Søndergaard (born 1964) is one of the foremost of the generation of Danish poets to emerge onto the scene in the early nineties. Søndergaard’s first collection of poetry, Sahara i mine hænder (Sahara In My Hands) was published in 1992. This debut collection has been followed by a succession of works which have won him both critical acclaim and a number of literary awards. Language is Morten Søndergaard’s medium and his métier, one which he practises not only as a poet, but also as a translator, sound artist and literary editor. And while his craft is solidly rooted in the classic poetic tradition he is constantly intent on exploring the possibilities of language and new ways in which these can be presented. Over the years, alongside his written publications, this has resulted in musical and dramatic works and in recordings, exhibitions and installations centring on language and sound. Morten Søndergard’s most recent publication is The Process and Half the Kingdom (2010) and Pros and cons of developing wings (2013). - Barbara Haveland
two days of exhibition and concerts
Thursday, June 4, 2015
exhibition of graphic and photographic works by Michael Vorfeld
Christian Wolfarth, solo – cymbals
Michael Vorfeld, solo – percussion and projection
opening of the exhibition: 19h, concerts: 20:30h
Friday, June 5, 2015
exhibition of graphic and photographic works by Michael Vorfeld
VORWOLF, a duo concert with:
Christian Wolfarth – cymbals, Michael Vorfeld – percussion
exhibition open from 15h on, concert: 20:30h
Michael Vorfeld has been working intensively with the photographic medium since the 1970’s. The graphic and photographic works shown in this exhibition were all realized with a large size analogue camera. The images provide a finely nuanced and filigree view into an unconventional, independent, and individually formed world within contemporary percussion music.
In their very sound oriented work, the two percussionists Michael Vorfeld and Christian Wolfarth create music that transcends the boundaries of improvised and composed music, as well as those between instrumental and electro acoustic music, showing the influence of electronic music on contemporary musicians. By using unconventional playing methods and individually arranged set-ups of percussion instruments these two drummers create polyrhythmic structures and textures as well as soundscapes full of overtones, leading to a unique and distinctive world of sound; pure acoustic music, absolutely live!
Michael Vorfeld (Berlin), musician and visual artist plays percussion and self designed string instruments and realises electro-acoustic sound pieces. He works in the field of experimental, improvised music and sound art. Michael Vorfeld creates installations and performances with light and sound, works with photography and film.
Christian Wolfarth (Zurich) works as a drummer at the interface of improvised music, electro-acoustic sound art and Jazz. Besides his frequent solo activities he is a member of numerous ensembles. He regularly works with dancers, for theatre, movies and videos.