February has been a month of massively multitasking with intense preparations for forthcoming projects and adventures, many of which will be unleashed in the coming months. So whilst I sit here in seemingly sub zero temperatures in Amsterdam let’s step back for a moment.
Elemental Force quite literally kicked the month off with a bang, with an explosive and incendiary performance at Nottingham Castle. The distinguished walls of the castle were used as a backdrop for ambitious animations, with fireworks and booming score accompanying this tale. 4000 people marvelled as the walls became at one moment a battle ground, the next Robin Hood firing arrows across the building.
Each show reflects the geography and history of the area so if you are locally based check in swiftly to pick up FREE tickets for the next shows, which will take place in Derby at the Silk Mill, Newark Castle and Chatsworth House in March. Shows are selling out very swiftly so don’t be slack.
Much of February was spent developing a new project, Weave Waves, with celebrated textile designer Ismini Samanidou, which will premiere in a new installation as part of FutureEverything in Manchester on 21 March. After countless meetings, exchanging ideas and devouring tasty cakes, we were inspired by the visual and technical similarities between the digital software we both use, the physicality of code and how this in turn relates to mechanisms for mapping cities and recording the sounds of a city.
In addition this ongoing dialogue is documented online in a unique website, and will evolve over a four week period, culminating in this presentation of the commission at the FutureEverything. After which a touring show, supported by The Crafts Council, will open in London in May 2013, bringing together our shared interests in sound, geography and mapping, connecting textile weave structures with musical scores and presenting new works created especially for this show. More on this later.
Whilst on this arty direction, much of February was devoured in preparations towards my solo show in Amsterdam, Scanner: A Month in the Life of an Artist, which will open at Melkweg Mediaroom on 2 March. Melkweg is a popular music venue and culture centre in Amsterdam with a cinema, theatre and gallery. I was invited to document a month in my life using audio, video and social media, but also by means of pen, paper and photography. This has culminated in an exhibition that offers a unique and personal view into the life of a contemporary artist, who, travelling from one place to the next, habitually enters into a bevy of artistic joint ventures.
The show will feature exclusive prints created in collaboration with Dutch designer Jurian Strik, plus photographs, video projections, objects, vinyl recordings and hand-written stories, celebrating one month, October 2012, in extreme detail. The show opens officially at 17.00 on 2 March with a presentation, on-stage interview and drinks, and continues until 28 April 2013 so if you are passing through this delightful city please do pop in and take a look.
Excitedly I just completed a very special remix for legendary British industrial group Clock DVA, for The Future Begins, their first release since 2006. Developed in the form of a very special USB smart media object, it contains 7 x 24bit audio files, with four new tracks from Adi Newton and TeZ, with remixes by Frank Bretschneider (Raster Noton), Atom Heart and myself, plus a specially commissioned 16mm film. My piece is 23 minutes, expanding upon the musical themes in a cinematic way and will only be heard exclusively on this release.
In March I’m taking part in a very adventurous weekend put together by The Quietus and British group Wire, to coincide with the release of their new album, Change Becomes Us (Swim). The four-day event, Wire: Drill, takes place across different London venues, with my show at Café Oto on Friday 22 March. On the bill are Edvard Graham Lewis of Wire and collaborator Klara Lewis, who uses sounds recorded in disparate cities around the world in her work. Then there’s Mute’s Land Observations, whose album Roman Roads using looped guitar eddies to evoke the ghosts in the landscape left by the ancient transport networks of the Legions.
The final part of the night will be my performing a specially written piece with Gazelle Twin, reimagining Wire in a murky, divergent, cinematic scope. It looks set to be a very special event indeed. Other artists on subsequent nights include Toy, Malka Spigel, Comanechi, Charlie Boyer and the Voyeurs, Stranger Son and others. Tickets available here. In addition I shall be taking part in the Pink Flag Orchestra with Wire at Heaven on 24 March, playing a massive open E chord with a host of other guests on stage.
I was in conversation on Monocle24 Radio and France Culture radio over the last month too, so if you wish to listen back to the latter you can tune in here to hear an hour long special, largely in French but with fine English hidden just beneath the surface. Whilst over here in Amsterdam I also made a one hour special for Beautiful Extremes which was broadcast on 26 February so just look for the date and listen.
Remember, tickets are still available for my forthcoming Spitalfields Music Festival shows in June 2013. As an Associate Artist I’ve been curating part of the programme, so will feature new live works and performances by The Haxan Cloak, Gazelle Twin and The Computer Junk Orchestra. Shows will sell out so if you intend to attend please don’t miss this opportunity for new works by such original sonic voices.
So until next month
Until next month.
Robin van Rimbaud
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Scanner: A Month in the Life of an Artist
02 March – 28 April 2013
An exhibition documenting one month in the life of a creative artist, featuring photographs, video, music, documentation, all created in the month of October 2012, capturing a portrait of each day from the mundane to the most exploratory and creative.
21 – 24 March 2013
The Crafts Council presents Weave Waves, a digital commission, which brings together sound artist Scanner, and textile designer Ismini Samanidou at 4 Piccadilly Place, Manchester as part of the FutureEverything Summit. Weave Waves will explore sound, geography and mapping, how this data relates to both textile weave structures and musical scores, and will showcase the collaboration to date.
Scanner and Samanidou have been inspired by the visual and technical similarities between the digital software they both use, the physicality of code and how this in turn relates to mechanisms for mapping cities and recording the sounds of a city.
Artangel Interaction invited writer and historian Sukhdev Sandhu to write a nocturnal journal unfolding over the course of 2006. His postings will appear sequentially at this microsite specially designed by Mind Unit. Sandhu’s forays see him prospecting in the London night with the people who drive its pulse, from the avian police to security guards, zookeepers and exorcists. Acclaimed artist and musician Scanner has collaborated with Sukhdev and Ian Budden of Mind Unit to compose the sound for the site. If you would like to be kept informed as each episode is posted, join artangel’s mailing list by clicking here .
Bittersweet Songs for the Sleepless City
NightJam is the latest project in Artangel Interaction’s Nights of London series of artist-led collaborations with people who have a special view on a hidden side of the nocturnal city. Scanner invited young people at New Horizon Youth Centre in King’s Cross to collaborate on a creative project that expresses how the city at night looks and sounds to their ears and eyes. Through music and voice workshops they explored the sense of freedom and fear, celebration and solitude of the concealing darkness. Meanwhile, they captured their nights on disposable cameras, taking images that are at times eerie, startling, contemplative and funny. NightJam presents two elusive visual and musical journeys through the city’s ‘quiet’ hours.
NightJam presents two music tracks, a film, photographs, that can be experienced and freely downloaded. Additionally it features remixes of NightJam by Stephen Vitiello, Hakan Lidbo, Troy Banarzi, Si-cut.db and Pete Lockett.