Kjell Bjørgeengen, Keith Rowe & Philipp Wachsmann

Kjell Keithrowe 01 Philippwashmann

Briefly: What'll it be like?

An immersive environment in which sound is looped through oscillators, computer, violin, a radio, guitar pick-ups and specially constructed video amps to create dense flickering images and colour fields that play with your persistence of vision.

In More Detail:

Who are these people?

Kjell Bjørgeengen is one of Europe's leading moving image artists. And he's a great match for KYTN, as over a 30-year career he has developed a way of transforming audio signal from oscillators directly into rapid fire alternating flicker images. Sound is considered as image, and modified for it's visual qualities.

Keith Rowe, trained as a painter, is one of the UK's great experimental musicians. By laying his guitar on it's back and starting to perform it with unexpected materials (radios, fans, knives) he gave up a good deal of control over his instrument, or more accurately, opened it up to chance, in which he could still make decisions. He is one of the key progenitors of electro-acoustic improvisation, and his approach to between-ness as a way of creating collaborative music – the push and pull between different people/ poles marks him out as a deeply considered improviser, interested in the social space created by performance, and your involvement in that, as much as his musical choices.

philipp wachsmann (violin/ electronics) came to free improvisation through the music of such 20th century classical composers as Ives, Webern, Partch, and Berio, and spurred on by the realisation that "composition is about the imagination of performance and its realisation, the live moment". He's collaborated with pretty much all of the key UK improvisers from the 70's on: Parker, Bailey, Oxley etc and so on…and it's a great privilege to have him here.

What's going on here?

Right so: Kjell has these custom built video amps that he can create flickering, analogue (sometimes dense/ sometimes Spartan: minimal/ maximal) images with by sending sound signals to them from oscillators. For this performance, instead of sending those signals direct to his amps, Keith will pick them up on his radio and play them back through his guitar pick-ups, before sending them back to Kjell to transform into image. Philipp, as a kind of counterpoint, has developed thin violin lines and electronic crackles in direct response to Kjell's images. It's a kind of Mexican stand-off about the deployment of probably only 5 images/ second.

Why's it interesting?

I'll tell you why: it's a pretty robust bridge (open to two way traffic) across the audio/ video border, a flickering and dense analogue feedback loop that treats sound and image as two different products of the same collective, artistic sweat, pulled in three directions at once. Pure KYTN.