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Second Sundays Interviews: Mathilde Roussel, Jesse Moretti, Olivier Conan, and Janka Nabay

During the August 2015 Second Sunday celebration, Clocktower host Jake Nussbaum spoke with Pioneer Works' artists-in-residence Mathilde Roussel and Jesse Moretti as well as Janka Nabay, the King of Bubu, and Olivier Conan, the humble orchestrator of the Second Sundays concert series. This program documents that live streamcast. Listeners can use the fast-forward button to jump through the interviews.

Mathilde Roussel is a French artist based in Paris. Her drawings and sculptures are conceived like living organisms. During her creation process, Roussel progressively gives up control over the materials she uses by letting them find their own form of existence. She selects mediums that are both fragile and resistant: paper pulp, graphite powder, incised rubber or plants. This choice allows her to explore unstable forms and observe their continuous mutation. Through incision, opening, recovering and suspension, the artist forces the forms she produces to find their place in space, thus expressing and revealing the movement they contain in themselves. To a larger extent, Roussel’s practice seeks to record the ways time marks us: aging, hardening, scarring, and mutation. This research consists in producing tangible forms that indicate our vulnerability. At Pioneer Works, Mathilde Roussel created works for her 2015 exhibition at The Invisible Dog Art Center curated by Gaelle Porte. She explores the way we transform our body to fight its deterioration, and ultimately, death.

Jesse Moretti uses digital technologies to design the spaces of painting and photography. Existing between abstraction, graphic art, Adobe CS, and the screen, the work aims for a place where the supposedly discrete states–-flatness and dimensionality, analogue and digital–-are merged. By creating a feedback loop between digital and material space in the studio, she collapses and unifies the pictorial plane.

Janka Nabay is the king of Bubu--Sierra Leone’s brand of electro-pop. Back in his hometown of Sierra Leone, Janka electrified traditional Bubu music by adding drum machines and synthesizers, giving it a frantic edge that made him a national hero. Now based in the U.S., Janka has hooked up with musicians from Brooklyn and DC (where he lives) who call themselves the Bubu Gang. Janka and his musicians share a similar fascination with the old and the new, mixing modern beats and analog keyboards with call and response vocals, improvisation, and touches of 70’s psychedelia.

Olivier Conan is the owner and founder of the Brooklyn music club Barbès. He is the music curator and tastemaker for Pioneer Works' Second Sundays concert series.


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