Commissioned Works/Special Projects is our program offering financial and administrative assistance to individual artists. We act as a fiscal agent for those artists applying for grants from federal and state programs and private foundations. Through this program we help develop collaborative projects between artists and assist with the presentation of their work. In 2021, we have sponsored the following projects:
LadyK: The Masquerades of Soft Machines
Tiny lights amidst the soft fiber structures and objects and a low hum beckon the viewer to explore the forest-like installation. As you peer inside the structures, you notice small screens, speakers, lights and motors are hidden within. Each is busy with activity, churning an endless sea of personal data captured from our smart devices and phones. As you step back from that area, you take in the surrounding environment and the diversity of soft hives buzzing with activity. You are within a soft machine that is mining real-time information, analyzing nations of data.
As a new media, fiber, and installation artist, LadyK builds interactive systems exploring our emerging futures of the digital experience. She utilizes sound and light to represent people, relationships and activities that happen in other spaces and times. She creates a delicate presence of these entities, developing the architecture to facilitate them; choreograph within time; making each visceral. She codes and incorporates sensors, electronics, fibers and computer vision to create her pieces. She is fascinated by the liminal spaces created by digital communities and the cultural changes that result. Her latest environments investigate how communication technologies are shaping our identity and pushing us towards a tighter integration with the machine.
Dan Joseph: Periodicity Piece #10
Periodicity Piece #10 is a new mixed-media, multi-channel sound installation commissioned by Harvestworks for the organization’s exhibition space in Nolan Park, Governor’s Island. Informed by early minimalism, acoustic ecology, deep listening and ambient music, Periodicity Piece #10 will combine a diverse collection of sounds into a slowly changing sonic ecosystem.
Dan Joseph is a free-lance composer, curator and writer based in New York City. He began his career as a drummer in the vibrant punk scene of his native Washington, DC. During the late 1980s, he was active in the experimental tape music underground, producing ambient-industrial works for independent labels in the U.S. and abroad. As an artist who embraces the musical multiplicity of our time, Dan works simultaneously in a variety of media and contexts. Since the late 1990s, the hammer dulcimer has been the primary vehicle for his music. As a performer he is active with his own chamber ensemble, The Dan Joseph Ensemble, as well as in various improvisational collaborations and as an occasional soloist.
Kalun Leung: Die Posaune
Die Posaune is a sound art installation that explores the sonic possibilities of the slide trombone as a self-generating sound object. The trombone, essentially a variable-length tube, is appropriated in this work as an enclosure for propagating microphone feedback. The proposed realization features eight self-sounding trombones, spatially arranged to create an immersive and generative soundscape. Viewers can interact with the installation by engaging the rope and pulley system that controls each instrument’s slide mechanism.
Kalun Leung is a trombonist, improvisor, composer and creative technologist based in Brooklyn, New York. His work as an instrumentalist is motivated by the exploration of new and unexpected contexts in which the trombone can thrive. This ongoing research-based approach has manifested in audiovisual performances of Keith Haring’s unpublished computer art and a Fluxusinspired trombone sound sculpture. He is a member of the movement and sound improvisation collective ECHOensemble, Eco-Music Big Band, and has a solo project involving electroacoustic improvisation
Sound artist Cecilia Lopez is creating a collaborative performed- installation work with pioneering sound artist John Driscoll. This multi-generational collaboration continues a working relationship between Driscoll and Lopez started in 2018. They have performed together numerous times since, most notably an untitled performed-installation work at the Fridman Gallery (NY) in 2018. Lopez will work with Driscoll on continuing the development of an extended performed-installation work resulting from their above-mentioned performance.
Cecilia Lopez is a composer, musician and multimedia artist from Buenos Aires, Argentina currently based in New York. She works across the media of composition, video, installation and the creation of sound devices and systems. Lopez holds an MFA from the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts, Bard College and an MA from Wesleyan University in composition (2016).
Alfredo Salazar-Caro: Dreams of the Jaguar’s Daughter
Dreams of the Jaguar’s Daughter is a Surreal VR Documentary where Achik’, the spirit of a young immigrant, guides viewers through her dreams and memories of her arduous journey north. Starting in the Guatemalan jungle, traveling through central Mexico and reaching the Arizona Desert. Each dream is composed from documentation of immigrants’ journeys during the 2018 Caravan through today, using 3D scans, drones, traditional footage, interviews and 360 footage.
Alfredo Salazar-Caro is an artist living and working in Brooklyn, NY. He has been integrating VR/AR into his artistic practice since 2013 and has been lecturing on the subject since 2014 at institutions such as NYU, School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Johns Hopkins University. He is also the co-founder and Creative Director of DiMoDA, the Digital Museum of Digital Art, a virtual museum dedicated to commissioning and exhibiting XR artworks by contemporary artists.
Michael J. Schumacher: urMix
urMix is an interactive listening project based on the idea of multitrack recording and surround-sound listening. It is a metal box, about 16x8x4, with 8 jacks, an LED screen, buttons to control playback, a USB socket and a power cord. Inside is a power supply, a sound card, 8 preamps and wires. A USB storage device containing music formatted as 8 separate audio channels is inserted into the box and it’s ready to go.
Michael J. Schumacher (lead artist) has a long history working with multichannel sound, sound art installations, as a curator, gallery director and composer. He earned his Doctorate in Music Composition from Juilliard and has been creating computer-based installations since the 1990s. He founded and directed Diapason, New York’s only gallery devoted to sound art, from 1996-2014. Diapason’s archive continues to be presented in spaces throughout the world. Schumacher also has extensive experience in the popular music world, having released three records with his rock band, dinmachine.