For Immediate Release
Contact: Keri Murawski
SCHOOL OF VISUAL ARTS, THE NEW YORK DIGITAL SALON AND NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY PRESENT THE 2009 VISUAL MUSIC MARATHON
GENRE-BENDING WORK BY OVER 100 ARTISTS FROM 15 COUNTRIES
Saturday, April 11, 10am — 10pm
Visual Arts Theater, School of Visual Arts
333 West 23 Street, New York
Free and open to the public
The MFA Computer Art Department at School of Visual Arts, the New York Digital Salon and the Department of Music and Multimedia Studies at Northeastern University present the New York premiere of the Visual Music Marathon, a 12-hour festival showcasing 120 works by contemporary digital artists and composers from around the world. The event offers an encyclopedic look into the burgeoning practice of visual music, which combines animation and musical composition. The roots of the genre date back more than two hundred years to the ocular harpsichords and color-music scales of the 18th century; the current art form came to fruition following the emergence of film and video in the 20th century.
PREVIEW ANIMATION from Visual Music Marathon
The Visual Music Marathon presents a remarkable array of artistic strategies and sensibilities. Some of the selected works consist of abstract visual interpretations of pieces of music, while others apply structural concepts of music to create moving images, or explore the overlap between visual and musical languages. The artists make use of a range of media and technologies, including found footage, hand-drawn animation, stop-motion photography, digitally processed video, computer-generated imagery, and paintings made directly on film. Works include audio tracks ranging from computer-generated scores, to sampled sounds from nature, to both classical and contemporary musical compositions.
Northeastern University faculty member Dennis Miller, artistic director and curator for the festival, explains, “With the Visual Music Marathon, we have put together the largest and most
historically representative selection of work in this field. It is a unique opportunity to see the best of cutting-edge digital art from around the world as well as rarely screened historical gems in the field of visual music.” Bruce Wands, chair of the MFA Computer Art Department at SVA and curator of the New York Digital Salon hour of the Marathon, remarked, “We are excited to share all of these works with the city of New York–the majority of which have never been seen here before. It is a wonderfully diverse group of films, which gives a sense of the creativity and momentum in this field right now.”
The program includes works by established figures in the field, such as Canadian/Belgian artist Jean Detheux (Daydream Mechanics V Sketch 3, Rupture and Liaisons), Icelandic artist Steina
Vasulka (Trevor), Austrian artist Tina Frank (Chronomops, Pitbudp) and American artists
Stephanie Maxwell (Time Streams, All That Remains) and Karen Aqua (Kakania, Sensorium).
The festival also presents the work of emerging digital artists including SVA alumnus Joe Tekippe (2006 MFA Computer Art; Modal Drawing Toy), German artist Robert Seidel (_grau) and UKbased artists Ruth Jarman and Joseph Gerhardt of Semiconductor (200 Nanowebbers), among others. In addition to the contemporary works, the program will include examples of rare, historic works from early practitioners of the art form, such as Hans Richter and Oskar Fischinger, which will be screened on 16mm film. The Visual Music Marathon will also feature live audio-visual acts: 1/X, performed by artist and SVA alumnus Chiaki Watanabe (1996 BFA Computer Art) and musician David Galbraith; and S2: Simstim Squared, performed by artist Marjan Moghaddam and composer Adam Caine.
The MFA Computer Art Department at SVA emphasizes creative experimentation and a multidisciplinary approach. Dedicated to producing digital artists of the highest caliber, the department guides each student in the development of a personal artistic style and in a course of study that is individually tailored to meet his or her needs. The two-year, 60-credit MFA degree
program offers several areas of specialization: animation, digital video, installation and digital fine art, interactive media, networked media and performance, or the option of a multidisciplinary track. Work by students in the department has been honored by the Student Academy Awards and appeared in such prestigious venues as the Whitney Biennial; the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum; SIGGRAPH Electronic Theater; the Ars Electronica Center; and the Annecy, Ottowa and New York Animation Festivals.
Since 1993, the New York Digital Salon (NYDS) has served as a catalyst for greater public awareness and appreciation of new media art, and continues to promote the creative use of technology and innovation in contemporary art. The NYDS maintains an extensive online archive of digital art, artists and essays. The NYDS contributes to cultural growth through educational and public programs, exhibitions and screenings, both nationally and internationally.
A project of the MFA Computer Art Department at SVA, the NYDS has received support from the NEA, the Rockefeller Foundation, NYSCA, and NESTA-UK, among others.
Founded in 1898, Northeastern University is a private research university located in the heart of Boston. The University’s distinctive cooperative education program, where students alternate semesters of full-time study with semesters of paid work in fields relevant to their professional interests and major, is one of the largest and most innovative in the world. The University offers a comprehensive range of undergraduate and graduate programs leading to degrees through the doctorate.
School of Visual Arts (SVA) in New York City is an established leader and innovator in the education of artists. From its inception in 1947, the faculty has been comprised of professionals working in the arts and art-related fields. SVA provides an environment that nurtures creativity, inventiveness and experimentation, enabling students to develop a strong sense of identity and a clear direction of purpose.
Media Contact: For more information, please contact Keri Murawski at 212.592.2164 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Image: Sean Capone, from The Plain Silvery Side of This Disc, 2006
For further details about the festival or to view the April 11 program schedule, please visit www.2009vmm.neu.edu and www.nydigitalsalon.org.
LINKS TO ARTISTS/ORGANISATIONS MENTIONED IN THIS PRESS RELEASE
New York Digital Salon