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New Ear Festival 2019 

Wednesday, January 9 –  Sunday, January 13


Each night in the Media Room: Eric LoPresti, Center-Surround


Center-Surround is a two-channel video which uses martial arts to reframe the problem of nuclear weapons on an intimate personal scale. Philosopher Timothy Morton calls nuclear weapons a ‘hyperobject’ -- a phenomenon so immense and irreversible that it is impossible to fully comprehend. Center-Surround juxtaposes video of sparring aikido practitioners with animation listing the name and date of each of the 2056 nuclear explosions in history, starting with the first atomic test in 1945, up to the most recent tests in North Korea. Using martial artists rhythmically throwing each other to the ground as a metaphor for the nuclear arms race, Center-Surround invites viewers to feel, in a small way, these terrifying weapons, not as abstraction or cinematic fiction, but as complex interactions between real human beings.


Eric LoPresti makes artwork about deserts, nuclear weapons and color. His paintings and digital works juxtapose abstract elements with representations of the vast landscapes of the American west, tracking cultural representations of conflict and beauty within our transforming ecology. Following in the painterly tradition of the apocalyptic sublime, LoPresti explores how our lives are shaped by trauma and aesthetics.  LoPresti holds a BA in Cognitive Science from the University of Rochester and an MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art. SuperBloom, a solo show of his work, is currently on view at New Mexico State University.

Scroll down for details of individual performances and performers' bios

This event is being broadcast live on Wave Farm's WGXC 90.7-FM Radio for Open Ears in New York's Upper Hudson Valley and streamed online at


Wednesday, Jan 9


Mary Lucier will perform the original slide version of her Polaroid Image Series, begun in 1969 as a collaboration with Alvin Lucier, based on his composition I am sitting in a room. By means of similar copying process, an original black and white Polaroid photograph was reproduced through a Polaroid copier numerous times, each subsequent photograph becoming itself a copy of the one before it. Slight errors in alignment, accumulation of dust, and the simple interaction of light and optics produced an ever-changing landscape in which the original image was completely transformed. The resulting image series is projected as slides, simultaneously with the original 23-minute audio work. In honor of its 50th anniversary, the work will be shown in the same manner as its premiere at the Guggenheim in 1970. 


Luke Stewart, Miriam Parker and Patrick Cain will present Live is the Medium, an audiovisual performance that amplifies the moment of improvisation through the interaction of the performers with speakers and projectors. Stewart plays the acoustic bass through an amplifier to engage with sonic feedback, while Cain uses camera and projector feedback in a parallel visual process. Parker creates another visual statement with movement, connecting the body with the higher concept of abstraction. By changing his position in relation to the speaker, Stewart can shape the feedback that the amplifier produces, thus creating a dialog between performer and speaker. Similarly, with Parker and Stewart in the middle of the visual feedback apparatus, Cain's video offers the audience a perspective on improvisation that shifts in real time.

Bob Bellerue's Piano Scramble is an improvised work for piano soundboard, percussion, and electronics.  Rooted in the multi-level feedback systems at play in his long-running Damned Piano project, Scramble mixes in an armful of metal bowls, cymbals, cans and other objects as resonators and percussive elements, to create a site-specific sonic array that harnesses the gallery's acoustics with a wide dynamic range.  

Mary Lucier began working in video in the 1970s, after first exploring sculpture, performance and photography. Early works, such as Dawn Burn (1975) and Bird's Eye(1978), are empirical records of the optical effects of light on the camera's eye. Aiming a laser directly at the camera or pointing a lens at the sun, she burned the vidicon tube in real time, inscribing it with calligraphic abstractions of light. In addition to installations, she has also produced video dance works with choreographer Elizabeth Streb, exploring relationships of the human figure, sculptural movement, and landscape. Among her many awards are a Guggenheim Fellowship and an American Film Institute Independent Filmmaker Grant, as well as grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Council on the Arts. Lucier has had solo exhibitions at The Carnegie Museum of Art, Wadsworth Atheneum, LACMA, Dallas Museum of Art, San Francisco Museum of Art, and MoMA. 

Luke Stewart's ensembles include experimental jazz trio Heart of the Ghost, Low Ways Quartet, and experimental rock duo Blacks' Myths. As a solo artist, his interests are in compiling a series of improvisational sound structures for Upright Bass and Amplifier, utilizing the resonant qualities of the instrument to explore real-time harmonic and melodic possibilities. He has performed at the Kennedy Center, the Atlas Performing Arts Center, Smithsonian Portrait Gallery, and many other venues. Luke also performs in Ancestral Duo, Irreversible Entanglements featuring Moor Mother, James Brandon Lewis Trio, Heroes are Gang Leaders, and other notable collaborations. He has been featured at numerous festivals, including the Vision Festival, Ende Tymes Festival, Sonic Circuits Festival of Experimental Music, and High Zero Festival of Experimental Improvised Music.

Miriam Parker uses sound, paint, light, movement, video projection and sculpture/installation to create media- and performance-based works. Parker's practice, in both performance and film, emerges from her understanding of the body in relationship to objects and space. Conceptually, Parker focuses on the permeability of identity and our capacity to adorn  ourselves with ideas as a way of identification. Her work has been greatly influenced by her connection to free jazz tradition, and her study of Buddhism, phenomenology, and kinesthetic empathy.  Miriam has been developing work as a solo artist, and in collaboration with visual artist Jo Wood-Brown under the working name of InnerCity Projects. She currently works as a performer in collaboration with Yoshiko Chuma and The School of Hard Knocks.

Patrick Cain is a multimedia artist working at the fringes of low-tech interventions and constructions. Visual interests include webcam microscopic inspections of textures and auto focus failures, as well as rudimentary feedback exercises. Sonically, Cain is one half of experimental band Model Home  (with Nappy Nappa) which works with ancient and misused electronics including home built synthesizers and modified tape machines, as well as vocal performance.

Bob Bellerue is a noise composer, experimental musician, and creative technician. His electronic sound work is focused on resonant feedback systems, using amplified instruments/ objects/ spaces/ circuits in combination with electronics and Supercollider programming. Bob's work has been presented at The Kitchen, Issue Project Room, Experimental Intermedia, Cafe Oto,  Centre de Cultura Contemporanea de Barcelona, Roulette, Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, the Art Institute of Chicago, and many other venues and festivals. His discography includes dozens of releases on various labels, including his own Anarchymoon Recordings and Sleepy Hollow Editions. He curates and produces the Ende Tymes Festival of Noise and Experimental Liberation (currently in its 8th edition).

Thursday, Jan 10





id m theft able performs within and without the realms of noise, avant-improvisation, sound poetry, performance, etc. using voice, found objects, electronics, and whatever else is available. He has given hundreds of performances across four continents in various settings.

Charmaine Lee is a New York based vocalist. Her music is predominantly improvised, favoring a uniquely personal approach concerned with spontaneity, playfulness, and risk-taking. Beyond extended vocal technique, Charmaine uses amplification and microphones to augment and distort the human voice. She has performed with leading improvisers Nate Wooley, id m theft able, and Joe Morris, and maintains ongoing collaborations with contemporaries Conrad Tao, Zach Rowden, Lester St. Louis, Leila Bordreuil, and Ben Bennett. She has performed at venues such as ISSUE Project Room, the Lincoln Center, Roulette, The Kitchen, and the Stone. Charmaine is a member of the Editorial Board of Sound American. As a composer, she has been commissioned by the Wet Ink Ensemble (2018) and has a forthcoming commission with Spektral Quartet (2018). Her music has been released on Anticausal Systems.


Leila Bordreuil is a Brooklyn-based cellist, composer and sound artist from France. She accesses concepts as diverse as jazz, contemporary classical, noise, and experimental traditions but adheres to none of them. Her work has been described as “steadily scathing music, favoring long and corrosive atonalities.” Driven by a fierce interest in pure sound and inherent texture, Leila challenges conventional cello practice through extreme extended techniques and amplification methods. Her composed works frequently incorporate sound-spatialization by way of site-specific pieces and multichannel installations. 

In 2018, she received composer commissions from the French Embassy at Lincoln Center, Issue Project Room, the French Alliance, The Kitchen and LAMPO (Chicago). Current projects include duos with Bill Nace, Tamio Shiraishi, Julia Santoli, and Zach Rowden, as well as a string trio with Joanna Mattrey and Sean Ali. In recent years, Leila has performed at some fancy places like the Whitney Museum, but mostly in basements and DIY venues throughout the U.S. and Europe.


Better known under the project LXV, US producer David Wesley Sutton also presents work under his own name which is equal parts INA-GRM intricacy and unstable basement electronics through which Sutton manipulates antecedently unknown synthesis techniques into sublime spiritual landscapes. In his work Sutton spatially arranges processed voices, digital fragments and fractured synthesized and sampled media into sound environments which have been described as:

''Sleek jagged contraptions, reflect virtual utopianism... Sonics with a tangibly and refreshingly different grain- cold, clear, uncompromising and pretty exquisite'' -- (Adam Harper, WIRE Magazine). "Concisely and evocative, as opposed to materiality... perfectly complementary exploration of the spirit-mind" (Sonia Garcia, Noisey)

Kieran Morris is a New York based musician working with electronics and recorded sound. More often presenting work as Negation, his output is rooted in the noise tradition and driven by specific concepts or urges. Current efforts are marked by attention to improvised phrasing, densities of both sound and silence, and the practice of listening. 

/Image by id m theft able/ 

Friday, Jan. 11



Milford Graves Full Mantis, directed by Jake Meginsky and co-directed by Neil Young, is a portrait of renowned percussionist Milford Graves, exploring his kaleidoscopic creativity and relentless curiosity. Graves has performed internationally since 1964, both as a soloist and in ensembles with such legends as Albert Ayler, Giuseppi Logan and Sonny Sharrock. He is widely considered to be a founding pioneer of avant-garde jazz, and he remains one of the most influential living figures in the evolution of the form. The film draws the viewer through the artist’s lush garden and ornate home, into the martial arts dojo in his backyard and the laboratory in his basement - all of this just blocks from where he grew up in the housing projects of South Jamaica, Queens.


The duo of Susie Ibarra and Brian Chase brings together two drummers expanding the vocabulary and artistic range of their instrument. Influences range from world folk traditions to the contemporary avant-garde; as a result, drums and percussion receive new treatment in expressing rhythm, texture, and mood. For their set together, Susie and Brian will perform a series of intertwined solos and duets. This concert program is very special as it brings together a lineage of teacher and student. Milford Graves was a principal teacher for Susie Ibarra, and Susie Ibarra was a principal teacher for Brian Chase. The relationship of teacher and student at this level is one that is everlasting. 

Composer/Percussionist Susie Ibarra creates music that explores rhythm, indigenous music, sound installation, interactive art, and acoustic /electronic instrumentation. Ibarra is a Yamaha, Paiste and Vic Firth Drum Artist.  She is a 2014 TED Senior Fellow, and in 2017 was named one of the Best Percussionists in Downbeats Critics Poll. Ibarra’s work in 2017-18 includes Fragility: An Exploration of Polyrhythms, commissioned by Asia Society in partnership with Pioneer Works; Perception, an album recorded with DreamTime Ensemble on Decibel Collective; and a commission for Kronos String Quartet in partnership with Carnegie Hall. Ibarra has performed with luminaries such as Pauline Oliveros, NEA heritage artist Danongan Kalanduyan, John Zorn, Wadada Leo Smith, Dave Douglas, Tania Léon, Ikue Mori, Yusef Komunyakaa, Yuka Honda, Sylvie Courvoisier, Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe, YoshimiO, Tarek Atoui, Trisha Brown, Derek Bailey, Marc Ribot, Jennifer Choi, Craig Taborn, Mali singer songwriter Mamadou Kelley and Hamdcha Sufi Group of Fez, Morocco.

Brian Chase is a drummer and composer living in Brooklyn. His diverse range of work includes that with Grammy nominated rock band Yeah Yeah Yeahs, the community of the New York experimental music scene, and his solo project, Drums and Drones. Performances have taken him across the world and throughout NYC to such notable venues as the Sydney Opera House, UK’s Reading and Leeds Festivals, Toronto’s X Avant Festival, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and The Stone, among many more. Recorded works include several with Yeah Yeah Yeahs, three full lengths with Drums and Drones, and countless more as an ensemble member and supporting musician. Regular collaborators on the improvised music scene include Zeena Parkins, Anthony Coleman, Catherine Sikora, Jeremiah Cymerman, and Chris Cochrane. In June 2018, Brian launched his own record label, Chaikin Records. The label’s first release was Drums and Drones: Decade, a triple album and 144 page book culminating the first ten years of the Drums and Drones project. 

Saturday, Jan 12




Stephen Vitiello and Taylor Deupree create rich, quiet, textural soundscapes with modular synthesizers, electric guitar, field recordings and keyboards. This performance marks the release of Fridman Variations, a vinyl co-produced with the gallery on Deupree's 12k label, the lead track of which was recorded at New Ear 2018 in our previous home at 287 Spring Street.

Dorit Chrysler weaves layers of microtonal Theremin loops with analog tracks and live vocals, creating cinematic soundscapes. 

Nadav Assor's Tunneling is an audio-visual-sculptural forensic investigation / tutorial, in which the artist digs a multilayered, projected tunnel in the walls of the performance space, revealing real and imagined substructures, materials and memories. 

Stephen Vitiello is an electronic musician and media artist. CD releases have been published by New Albion Records, Sub Rosa, 12k and Room 40. His sound installations and multi-channel works are in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Lyon. Exhibitions include a site-specific work for NYC’s High Line, “Soundings: A Contemporary Score,” at the Museum of Modern Art; the 2002 Whitney Biennial; and the 2006 Biennial of Sydney. Over the last 25 years, Vitiello has collaborated with such artists and musicians as Pauline Oliveros, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Taylor Deupree, Joan Jonas, Julie Mehretu and Steve Roden. Vitiello has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship for “Fine Arts,” a Creative Capital grant for “Emerging Fields” and an Alpert/Ucross Award for Music.

Taylor Deupree's recordings, rich with abstract atmospherics, have appeared on numerous record labels, and well as in site-specific installations at such institutions as the ICC (Tokyo, Japan) and the Yamaguchi Center for Arts and Media (Yamaguchi, Japan). He has collaborated with the likes of Ryuichi Sakamoto, David Sylvian, Stephan Mathieu, Stephen Vitiello, Christopher Willits, Kenneth Kirschner, Frank Bretschneider, Richard Chartier, Savvas Ysatis, Tetsu Inoue and others. In 1997 he founded the record label 12k, which has released over 100 recordings by some of the most accomplished musicians and modern sound artists of our time. His music today emphasizes a hybrid of natural sounds and technological mediation. It’s marked by a deep attention to stillness, and by his passion for the studio as a recording instrument .

Dorit Chrysler has performed with the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, is featured on the soundtrack of the HBO documentary Going Clear, and has just completed the soundtrack for a TV Crime Series. Her works have been commissioned by MoMA, the Venice Biennale and The French Cultural Ministry.  She is the founder of The New York Theremin Society and “Dame Electric”, a festival dedicated to female Pioneers in Analog Music. She co-produced the ten piece Theremin Orchestra Performance at the LA Disney Hall and has collaborated with Carsten Nicolai, Cluster, Jesper Just, Anders Trentemoeller, Elliot Sharp and Phillippe Quesne. Chrysler has performed at the Lincoln Center, Palais Tokyo, the Louisiana Museum, Coachella, Roskilde, Cern, Konzerthaus Vienna and MMCA Seoul, among many other international venues.

For more than three decades, sound artist, photographer and filmmaker Lary 7’s decidedly eclectic work had taken many forms – from music to visual art to performance and beyond. He is fascinated with arcane machinery, mechanical and analogue, and recycling and reconfiguring scavenged and defunct equipment into something inspired and new.

Nadav Assor lives and works in Providence, RI. Assor’s work takes on systems of technological mediation that are frequently military-industrial in origin, from eye-tracking cameras to drones to telepresence-robots. Low-fi versions of these are critically repurposed as a means for creating communities, intimate human dialog and visceral audio-visual-tactile experiences. Assor’s videos, installations and performances have been featured in Arsenal Berlin, the Oberhausen Film Festival, Video Vortex XI at Kochi-Muziris, India, Hong-Gah Museum Taipei, La Casa Encendida Madrid, Edith-Russ Haus Oldenburg, Transmediale Festival Berlin, the Soundwave Biennial San Francisco, Residency Unlimited NYC, Julie M Gallery Toronto + Tel Aviv and more. He is Associate Professor at Connecticut College and a 2019-2020 Fellow at the MIT Open Documentary Lab.

Sunday, Jan 13



The NYTS teams up with Fridman Gallery for a round of Master Classes and Concerts as part of New Ear Festival. RSVP.

At the evening concert, eight Thereminists will present new works and explorations, continuing the experimental Theremin Lab that started in 2006 at Issue Project Room when the NY Theremin Society was founded. Featuring Performances by: Gabriel and Rachael Guma, Matt Dallow, Charles Hobbs, Cornelius Loy, Dorit Chrysler, and The Thereminoes.

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