may 14-24, 2006.
The Kunstvlaai is an international
fair for alternative ['not (yet) institutionalized'] art in Amsterdam,
that presents work by European (postgraduate) art students and from a selection
of independent artist initiatives.
The Kunstvlaai this year had its sixth edition in- and outside of several buildings of the Westergasfabriek - a former Amsterdam gas work turned 'culture park'( * ) - from saturday 6th, until sunday may 14th.
In one of these buildings, the Gashouder to be precise, we did a RAUDIO live event, on tuesday may 9th, and on wednesday may 10th, both days from 12h00 till 14h00.
Both days saw the same four participants. Besides ookoi, the band formerly known as 0 OK, 0:1 and at the time of this writing - amongst other things - arguably by far this continent's best dressed bèta pop act( ** ), we had Michael Peters joining us from Germany for two cut-up radio sets, nomadic soundician man manly (short for James Dougherty) dropping in on his way to Barcelona, and Wouter van Veldhoven from Utrecht - who built along one side the Gashouder podium an fantastic wall of fine analog equipment including no less than six old reel-to-reel machines. It made Wouter's set up look like some block of stuff pulled, complete and unabridged, from the tables of Okhuizen's booth. (Indeed he did buy some of his machines originally at Okhuizen's ...)
It was - for pretty much all of us - an unusual time of day to perform, as well as an unusual surroundings ... in the midst of a large collection of visual art exhibits, many of which were installations that also produced some sort of sound ... this was one of the reasons why, in fact, we did our performance as a headphone concert, which then in turn made us look even more as 'one among the Kunstvlaai exhibits'. Thus we watched visitors roaming the expo pass by us playing, stopping to watch and listen for a while, then to move on and often eventually come back again later to listen some more ... et cetera. An interesting experience, and I enjoyed both days and all performances an awful lot.
Wouter on both tuesday and wednesday used his machinery to set in motion
a series of delay processes that one might describe as 'modified frippertronics'.
The first day he did a piece that slowly built up in the cause of his 30
minutes; the second day something that was rather more 'direct' ... making
it easier to access also for the 'short time listeners'.
Michael Peters had come to do 'cut-up radio' live : using a radio as a sound source, he improvises with the signals received with the help of digital looping devices thus cutting up 'the radio' in real-time, rearranging it "into rhythmic patterns, clouds of sound particles, or phase shifting repetitions" ... Michael considered his tuesday's set (involving, of course, a lot of dutch radio) as one of his best yet. Despite - or maybe thanks to (?) - his getting stuck on his way from Kürten in a traffic jam around Utrecht and arriving at de Gashouder only just in time for the start of tuesday's performance ... [ The full recording of Michael's tuesday@Kunstvlaai cut-up radio set can be downloaded and/or streamed from his cut-up radio page. ]
Also James Dougherty incorporated 'local' sound in his performance in de Gashouder. In his set on tuesday he used parts from the recordings that he made with his laptop just after his arrival in Amsterdam on monday may 8th, of the public celebration on the Leidseplein, of Amsterdam soccer 'star team' Ajax winning the national cup ...
Ookoi started the first day's performance walking around inside the large Gashouder space while playing a clarinet (Peter) and a crackle box (me). Theatrical, and very much like a ritual ... Listening back to the recordings made during the final day of Roam is my Home left me with a similar impression ... Very much a ritual ___ like in cooking for cooking's instead of for eating's sake ... Maybe is it our overalls ? Curious, but fascinating; and certainly jam karet ... let's see where it will lead us ...
notes __ ::
(*) Over the years many a memorable event has been taking place on the Westergasfabriekterrein, but the one I always think of is one that I sadly missed : the premiere of Stockhausen's Helicopter String Quartet, on june 26th 1995 ... Funny enough, one of the outside exhibits on this year's Kunstvlaai was a glittering red real life size model of a helicopter, built by Mia Lerssi ... Don't know though whether there's any relation with the 1995 helicopter show ... Probably just a funny 'coincidence'. [ ^ ]
(**) The day after the Kunstvlaai, on thursday may 11th, we did a short tribute to Maarten Ploeg, at the 'Gave Avond' that was part of the 'De gaven van Maarten Ploeg exposition at Arti in Amsterdam. Ookoi played a number of 8 seconden stukjes, consisting in 8 seconds of sound, followed by 52 seconds of no sound, then for a finale did a version of the PARK4DTV tune, that was originally written by Maarten. The evening was somewhat modeled after a 1980's club evening, and ended with a performance of one of Maarten's bands, Soviet Sex. During the re-enactment of the 'Dans en Vecht' (which is dutch for: 'Dance and Fight') encore, in the 'old fashioned' rough time way, FPCM in no-time managed to get his stage dress torn pretty much in half ... [ ^ ]
(***) To subscribe to the Raudio Podcasts, get the feed's URI by clicking the green podcast button in the sidebar. Alternatively, you may preview the podcast feed, or simply download the mp3-file (10.3 Mb) ... [ ^ ]