|"For Clark Filio" is a new work by Nick James Scavo dedicated to the American painter Clark Filio. The piece appropriates the stylization of Morton Feldman’s compositions that are dedicated to painters -- For Philip Guston and Rothko Chapel being perhaps the most well known -- part of the New York School of composers’ impulse to often emphasize experimental music’s reciprocity with Abstract Expressionist Art. Unlike Feldman, the piece embarks from a dubious and wholly unclear relationship to painting as a medium. Instead, the piece is composed from a strong affinity to Filio’s subject matter and process: paintings from film stills and TV shows, Sandra Bullock in Bird Box, Frodo’s ashen face overlooking Mount Doom, Nightmare from Soul Caliber, Aribeth de Tylmarande from Neverwinter Nights, Jamie Lee Curtis in Blue Steel. Clark’s paintings use a precise technique clearly developed by someone who goes to the studio every day to make paintings. They gesturally capture a specific cultural moment as way of exaggerating and emphasizing the material medium of painting in a skilled, direct way. Simply put, and not unlike Feldman's compositions, Clark's various subjects throw us back to the material of painting.|
Feldman, an extrovert entertainer who happily threw himself between sweeping generalizations, wild analogies and impudent paradoxes — something that his relationship to painting is clearly a part of — is perhaps the Frodo, the Jamie Lee Curtis, the Sandra Bullock of the piece. For Clark Filio identifies with this impulsive mood; and, in homage to Clark and his work, attempts to in its own way necromance Clark’s paintings in order to throw us into the material of music.
The piece follows a recent project of developing musical “Necromanticism” (Necromancy + Romanticism)— a style of composition that presents thousands of samples from “deceased” self-produced and institutional contexts as a kind of “summoning” of sound (necromancy). The project has been articulated as an act of conjuring “dead” cultural contexts and musical materials as a way to passionately commune around wrecked expressions of the meaningful (romance) — exaggerating the dance of institutionalized presentation as a zombie, and compositional techniques as amorous manipulations of the walking dead.
Nick James Scavo is a musician and writer based in New York City. His current area of musical focus is developing the musical style of “Necromanticism.” He works in various solo and collaborative projects with The Actual School, contributes regular reviews and essays to Tiny Mix Tapes, and has presented work with MoMA PS1, Artists Space, The New Museum, Rhizome, Control Synthesizers and Electronic Devices, and in residence at NTS Radio. He has done institutional work with ISSUE Project Room, Blank Forms, Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center, and Empty Editions, Hong Kong. His recent published music includes “Vampyroteuthia” with Xander Seren, “Vorsch,” and numerous discrete works published in collaboration with Aaron Dowdy and Seren. His recent writing includes the essays “Traditional Music of a Wrecked Species: Dredging New Instruments Out of Bad Technology,” “A Musicology of Exhaustion” with Pat Bean, and “Against Worldbuilding: Fight The Snob Art of the Social Climbers!” He is also currently writing a preliminary treatise of a theory of music centered around an idiosyncratic conception of Wrath, edited by Alec Sturgis, to be published soon.
DeForrest Brown, Jr. is a New York-based rhythmanalyst, media theorist and curator. His work is concerned with speculative futures in performative contexts and programmatic intersections of technology and thought. He also produces digital audio and extended media as Speaker Music as well as being a representative of the Make Techno Black Again campaign..
Via App is an alias of Dylan Scheer, Brooklyn based experimental synthesist, sonic field researcher, electronic composer and performer, and club chaos conduit. They are most known for their acrobatic, narrative, conjuring, ever-transmuting live sets. Their studio recordings exist, in part, as documentation of their performances and are often live recordings stitched together.
Daffy Scanlan is an artist from New Jersey and currently based in New York. Her work explores the transportation of antiques through time and space, paying tribute to the neglect and ultimate disembodiment of un-new objects. She combines cracked and broken textures with antiquated color stories, creating portals into a canon of abuse and trauma. Under the moniker Drumloop, Scanlan collages micronized bits of language with piano and digital synthesis to create sonic representations of her internal universe. Her debut EP, Revenge Body, was recently released by Sweat Equity.