Sound Art Residency 2022: Clara de Asís & Veronica Anne Salinas
The Sound Art Residency organized by the Cultural Office of the Embassy of Spain and Experimental Sound Studio offers a unique experience for artists working in sound and experimental music.
The Sound Art Residency is conceived as a digital residency where the residents have the opportunity to research, experiment, and share knowledge and ideas. The residency aims to create a platform to enable artists from both sides of the Atlantic to extend the development of sound art and to encourage them to create new work and foster artistic collaborations.
The invited artists for the 2022 edition were Spanish artist Clara de Asis and artist Veronica Anne Salinas.
About Clara de Asis
Born in Spain in 1988, Clara de Asís is a composer and sound artist who explores the nexus of acoustics, spatiality, alternative notation and the phenomenology of listening. Alongside her compositions, her performance practice involves the use of electronics, various materials and found objects, transcending musical categories towards the experience of sound and placing the act of listening at the core of the creative process. She develops the notion of simplicity as an aesthetic principle.
Her works have been presented throughout Europe, America and Asia, in the form of concerts, premieres and installations. In 2020 her piece Comme de loin was honoured with a State Commission from the Ministry of Culture in France. She has been commissioned by prominent institutions such as GMEA Centre National de Création Musicale, Dara String Festival, Museo Reina Sofía Madrid, Sonic Art Research Unit Oxford, Helsinki Hiljaisen Musiikin Konsertti, among others. Clara de Asís has composed a variety of works for diverse ensembles, and performs widely across Europe.
Her recording output has been published by Another Timbre (UK), Elsewhere (USA), Marginal Frequency (USA), Insub (CH), PiedNu (FR), Pilgrim Talk (USA), Blank Mind (UK). She is also the co-founder of Discreet Editions, a publishing platform exploring interactions of historically-informed aesthetics in music and contemporary experimental composition, and has curated the Ernestine concert series in Marseille, France, for two years.
About Veronica Anne Salas
Veronica Anne Salinas is a Tejana artist, writer, researcher, and Deep Listener. Her work explores creative research in sound, environment, geomancy, writing, text scores, listening practices, anthropology, performance, improvisation, acoustic ecology, the archive, and video work. Yturri-Edmunds is her solo project. She holds an MFA in Sound from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Currently, she is studying at the Center for Deep Listening at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She has led Deep Listening sessions in Illinois, Texas, and Washington and regularly incorporates these techniques into her work as an improviser and sound artist. Her work in sound and Deep Listening stems from working with David Dove and the organization Nameless Sound (formerly the Pauline Oliveros Foundation Houston) in Houston, Texas, the birthplace of composer and DL pioneer, Pauline Oliveros. She has worked with Heloise Gold, Jennifer Wilsey, and Tom Bickley in the DL practice.
She is the managing editor of the archive project Nameless: 20 Years of Sound, an editor at the sound-based publication, the eaves, and creator of the urban listening project, Chicago Land Sound: Western Avenue.
Her work has also been featured at Elastic Arts (Chicago, IL), Omaha Under the Radar (Omaha, NE), 2nd International Conference on Sonorities Research (II CIPS Sonoridades Fronteriças), the Midwest Society for Acoustic Ecology (MSAE), Noise Pulp Radio, Quarantine Concerts, No Nation Art Lab (Chicago, IL), MANA Contemporary (Chicago, IL), Flatland Gallery (Chicago, IL), Farmhouse Art Collective, Open Sheds (Chicago, IL), The Inter-University Program for Latino Research (IUPLR) Latino Arts Now! 2019 Conference, Experimental Sound Studio (Chicago, IL), Chicago Design Museum (Chicago, IL), Sullivan Galleries (Chicago, IL), Mudlark Theatre (New Orleans, LA), Box 13 (Houston, TX), Megapolis Audio Festival (Philadelphia, PA), Midtown Arts & Theatre Center Houston (Houston, TX), Lawndale Art Center (Houston, TX), Art League Houston (Houston, TX), Alabama Song (Houston, TX), Vermont Studio Center (Johnson, VT), Clamp Light Artist Studios & Gallery (San Antonio, TX), Artpace (San Antonio, TX), Sala Diaz (San Antonio, TX), Highwire Arts (San Antonio, TX), and Cities and Memory (UK).
This sound piece was created by Clara de Asís & Veronica Anne Salinas as the result of the Sound Art Residency.
Sound Piece by Clara de Asís & Veronica Anne Salinas
After a series of online exchanges, first spread informally throughout the first half of the year, then concentrated in the months of September and early October, Veronica Anne Salinas and I met in Chicago to pursue our collaborative work during ten days at Experimental Sound Studio, as part of the Outer Ear residency program.
The discussions that we had over the course of the initial phase of our collaboration informed our creative process and set a conceptual and aesthetic frame within which we could operate. The recording room became our atelier for the whole period of our residency at ESS. We were granted full access to it, able to settle our respective instruments and materials in the space and position an array of four speakers, setting the aural architecture of a particular landscape made out of waveforms.
Not only the technical conditions at ESS facilitated our process and rendered its materialization possible, but also the social and symbolic space at the studio, where the atmosphere was supportive, enthusiastic, inclusive. The eager generosity of all those who were involved in this residency mobilized interactions, encounters and dialogues with a diverse community of people coming from different backgrounds engaged in a variety of sound-based practices. I could experience the vibrant experimental music scene in Chicago, its insightful openness, idiosyncrasy and passionate curiosity, which felt remarkably specific to the city and bear witness of the vivid creative collective energy that circulates in town. In only ten days I attended a multitude of outstanding concerts and created exciting alliances to be developed certainly in the near future.
Our music-making process was interwoven with trips around town, which became the scene of many conversations around listening, art, identity, life. A reminder that music exists beyond production, and so one can approach music-making from an oblique angle, such as going for a walk along the lake or talking about the writings of Gloria Anzaldúa, Daniela Cascella, Brandon Labelle, Julia Eckhardt, Bell Hooks.
We also visited the sound department of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with Alex Inglizian, who took us through the most inspiring electronic instruments, including the legendary Emu synthesizer.
Our residency culminated in a public rendition of our collaborative piece in the form of a sound performance at the green house of the Lincoln Park Conservatory, incorporating electronics, wind whistles and shakers. Among ferns and towering palms, we invited the audience to experience the environment by means of a sonic agency in interaction with the aural entities already present in the green house, as well as other sensorial realities such as the infinite shades of green and brown, the concurrence of textures and the substantial humidity in this extraordinary ecosystem.
In parallel to this residency at ESS, two of my compositions were premiered in Chicago by the ensemble a·pe·ri·od·ic, led by Nomi Epstein, as part of a double-portrait concert also featuring works by Argentinian composer Gabriela Areal. For this occasion at Elastic Arts, I performed my piece Pillar of Salt, involving modular synthesizer and percussion, as an opening solo set.
Following this concert, I was given the opportunity to deliver a lecture to the composition students at DePaul University upon the invitation of Dr. Osnat Nezer, focusing on the main aesthetic and philosophical concepts that drive my creative practice.
Thank you to the Cultural Office of the Embassy of Spain in the US, Experimental Sound Studio, a·pe·ri·od·ic, Elastic Arts, the Musicianship & Composition faculty at DePaul University School of Music, the Lincoln Park Conservatory. And especially Veronica Anne Salinas, Ernesto Coro Morán, Adam Vida, Alex Inglizian, Olivia Junell, Ralph Loza, Nomi Epstein, Osnat Netzer, and all the ears and friends who made this experience so fantastic and fruitful.—Clara de Asis
Experimental Sound Sudio
Founded in 1986 by Dawn and Lou Mallozzi, Eric Leonardson, and Perry Venson, Experimental Sound Studio (ESS) has occupied its Edgewater location since 2006. The facility is home to a full-service recording, mixing, and mastering studio for hire; Audible Gallery, a small public space for exhibitions, meetings, workshops, performances, and artists’ projects; and the Creative Audio Archive – an invaluable collection of recordings, print, and visual ephemera related to avant-garde and exploratory sound and music of the last five decades.
ESS presents eclectic performance and installation programming, workshops, and artist talks year round –both in the various spaces around the studio (including its garden) and at various partner venues around Chicago.