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Cities Are Natural (Composition Two)

As part of Pioneer Works' Second Sundays open house event, Clocktower artist-in-residence Melissa F. Clarke presents field recordings from the Red Hook area and two experimental, techno-house performances, curated by She was Freaks (Mike Sheffield), featuring Plebeian (Andrew Nerviano) and CienFuegos (Alex Suárez). Staged inside Clarke's Cities Are Natural residency studio space at Pioneer Works, Plebeian and CienFuegos's sound performances interact with Clarke's video installation made of glass, paper, and metal. Each set is introduced by a short vignette of field recordings and visualized data taken from the local environment.

Brooklyn-based Andrew Nerviano combines electronics, pedals, and fuzz, to create complex house music. His electronic music project revolves around live hardware performance of sample-based sequencers, analog synthesizer, and external effects processors. Stylistically, the project aims to combine cut-up technique, dense rhythmic layering, and noisy psychedelia into a singular brand of techno.

Miami ex-patriate Alex Suárez works with sample manipulation, computer production, and sound texturing for divinity-tinged club techno. Suárez debut album was released with Primitive Languages, and he is set to release a record on Unknown Precept and a cassette on Exotic Dance Records in 2015.

She was Freaks
Since April 2013, Mike Sheffield of Alan Watts and Heavens Gate has been working on a curatorial project entitled She Was Freaks. The name was taken from a biography of photographer Diane Arbus wherein the author William Todd Schultz refers to Arbus’s obsession with photographing eccentrics and how she would lose herself in her subjects, giving over to them completely rather than just winning their trust for her own personal gain, “She was freaks.”

Melissa F. Clarke

Melissa F. Clarke is an educator, curator, and an interdisciplinary artists working at the intersections of research, data, science, and design. She extrapolates research and observation into multimedia, participatory installations, generative video and sound sculptures, performances, and printed images. Her installation projects reconnect scientific data to an organic source using sound and images collected in the field. She creates immersive neolandscapes giving physical form to the information pulled from giant landmasses and the terrain beneath the seas surrounding us. Clarke was formerly an artist-in-residence at the Simons Center for Geometry and Physics at Stony Brook University. She has performed and exhibited her work at Eastern Bloc, Montreal, Interactive Art Fair, FL, 319 Scholes, NY, Eyebeam, NY, Issue Project Room, NY, Reverse Art Space, NY, the Queens Museum, NY, the Electronic Music Foundation, Suny Stony Brook, NY, and the International Biennial of Contemporary Art ULA-2010, Venezuela. She successfully launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund her arctic travels and research. Her work has been featured by the Creators Project and with publications such as the Village Voice, Kickstarter, Art 21, Blouin Art Info, Impose Magazine, and Columbia University’s State of the Planet.

Cities Are Natural (Composition One)

Clocktower artist-in-residence Melissa F. Clarke performs with Leila Bordreuil and Byron Westbrook. Positioned in front of a transforming video installation made of glass, paper and metal, Clarke, Bordreuil and Westbrook create sounds that integrate the building’s infrastructure and ideas of the city as natural. The sound begins at 5PM with Melissa playing glass, paper, and metal, along with field recordings and data taken from Red Hook and Pioneer Works. Soon there after, Leila Bordreuil plays cello and overlaps the existing sounds with her own collage of texture variations, phantom overtones and sometimes pitched utterances, through a unique approach to amplification. Bordreuil’s work becomes prominent in the piece as Clarke's sound drifts out. Then Byron Westbrook performs synthesized sounds influenced by the gestures of urban location recordings, responding to the performance space with dynamic layers of perceived space and time. The entirety of three performances become a single audio-visual composition recorded by Clocktower radio and captured within Clarke’s installation as visuals.

Cities Are Natural (Composition Three)

In collaboration with Christine Tran (Witches of Bushwick and Discwoman) and Mike Sheffield (She was Freaks), Melissa F. Clarke and Clocktower present an evening of performances and visuals inspired by the city as our natural habitat.

Melissa F. Clarke, Cities Are Natural (Composition One)

Clocktower artist-in-residence Melissa F. Clarke performs with Leila Bordreuil and Byron Westbrook during Pioneer Work's May 2015 Second Sundays event. Staged in Clarke's video installation made of glass, paper and metal, Clarke plays field recordings taken from the Red Hook area, Bordreuil performs an experimental piece on the cello, and Westbrook synthesizes sounds collected from urban location recordings. The trio create sounds that integrate the building’s infrastructure and ideas of the city as natural. The performance recordings are followed by an interview with the artists. Leila Bordreuil is a cellist, composer, and sound artist. Through a unique and original vocabulary of extended techniques, preparations, and imaginative amplification methods, her instrument is used as an abstract resonant body to challenge conventional cello practice. Byron Westbrook is an artist and musician based in Brooklyn NY. He works with listening, perception and awareness, often pursuing routes of social engagement. His electronic sound interventions play with dynamics of perception of space, sometimes as multi-channel sound performances or as installation work using video or lighting.

Second Sundays: Streamcast June 2015

Clocktower Radio joins the monthly Pioneer Works open house festivities this June, with a full menu of online listening! Tune in to to hear: Patriot Games by #trashDAY: 4-5PM June 14th is Flag Day, and in celebration of The Read, Right and True, Radio Rossi presents this edition for your #trashDAY listening pleasure. No one is safe from the gleeful trash talk of visual artists Kenya (Robinson) and Doreen Garner -- not President Obama, not Uncle Sam, not Sallie Mae, not even Lady Liberty herself. And with performance artist Kanene Holder on deck as American Justice, shit is bound to get unreal. Ornette Coleman All Vinyl Special: 5-6PM David Weinstein and Tim Spelios spin through the career of the great free jazz master. Broken Time: 6:30PM Matt Freedman and Tim Spelios give us a taste of their storytelling project with tales of monsters, giants, brains in jars, and lots of New York history. Plus Ruth Kahn of Outpost talks about the Ridgewood scene. Rob Curto’s PE DE SERRA ALL-STARS: 8:00PM