Sounds Like… is a sound installation without sound. The four pairings of large images and video are based on the classic elements: Earth, Air, Fire, and Water. Each pairing also represents a significant event in US history relating to Americans of African descent, and their experiences. From broken promises associated with 40 acres and a mule, to the horrors of lynching, and the murder of Emmett Till, as well as honoring the spirit of those who fought for their rights.
Art can tell stories. For years I would talk about injustice by reciting numbers and statistics. When you say, “We have over 2.3 million people in prison,” it’s a large number to comprehend. Doing research at a prison issues-themed residency at the Blue Mountain Center in New York, I found some maps that I felt could help tell the story. This project shows the proliferation of the US prison system if seen from a celestial point of view. Using different colors to indicate different eras, the viewer can clearly see the astonishing growth of this system over time.
A play on Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg address, and four graphic musical scores. The viewer is given an MP3 player and listens to corresponding compositions and arrangements. Each score measure 40 inches x 60 inches.
Trails of Vapor
The 32-channel permanent sound installation commissioned by the Museum of Flight in Seattle presented the opportunity to integrate sound in a one-of-a-kind structure. The 40-minute program of soundscapes, field recordings and new compositions offered a new delivery method for my art. This piece incorporates such elements as recorded Boeing airplanes on the assembly line, the Blue Angels in flight, and new compositions.
Happy Ending Machine
“Happy Ending Machine” enables viewers to rearrange the instrumentation by breaking laser beams. Each laser beam corresponds to a different instrument (saxophone, bass/piano, drums, and guitar), which starts and stops by hand movement. The participant is the Conductor with full control.
Wall of Pieces
“Wall of Pieces,” which was on display at Consolidated Works in Seattle , involves 88 images that correspond to 88 keys on a keyboard. Each key plays a composition I’ve composed over the past 25 years. Multiple compositions can be played at one time to create soundscapes of cacophony.
Eleven Conversations is an interactive sound and video installation that allows the viewer to manipulate a video of eleven different cello performances by waving a hand over an infrared beam. The sensor responds to the proximity and speed of the hand. The different compositions mimic different types of conversations, discussions that involve conflict, nostalgia, sadness, and small talk. The use of a low-pass filter processing the audio in real-time creates the illusion that the performance is slowing down and speeding up as it is manipulated by the listener/viewer.
“Catalyst,” which was recently shown at the Jack Straw New Media Gallery in Seattle, WA employs a touch screen using xy technology (x being the horizontal coordinate and y being the vertical coordinate on the touch pad): where you touch the screen determines which aspects of the video/audio are altered.
“Busker” is a performance art piece. This is a 2 minute excerpt from a 40 minute performance near a busy intersection. During the performance not a single note is played.