1. Sight & Sound Festival, Canada
This annual festival brings together Canadian and international new media artists who work at the intersection of art, technology and science. Performances include Murmurate, an audio-visual composition performed through the audience’s smartphones, as well as Larsen Surf, a self-regulating sound system that generates complex loops, and Terra Mater, in which minerals are integrated into electronic circuits manipulated by synthesizers, pedals, modulars and consoles.
Venues around Montreal, September 28–October 2
2. Jean-Pierre Gauthier and Ryoji Ikeda: Orchestrated, Canada
Montréal-based artist Jean-Pierre Gauthier and Paris-based digital artist and composer Ryoji Ikeda explore music and orchestration in two installations. Gauthier’s Orchestre à géométrie variable is a complex and chaotic sculptural environment which combines electronics, primitive robotics and musical elements to stage a sensorial and kinesthetic experience. Ikeda’s data.tron is an orchestration of small encoded particles of knowledge – data – into elaborate visual and sonic manifestations.
Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, until October 30
3. Meantime, Ireland
Until 1916, the sun rose 25 minutes and 21 seconds later in Ireland than in Greenwich: time was officially defined as Dublin Mean Time. After the Easter Rising, the House of Commons in London abolished Dublin Mean Time in favour of GMT. Dublin lost its time. On the anniversary of this event, ten Irish and international female sound artists will collaborate together in Dublin to claim back this lost time by means of live experiments in sound.
Richmond Barracks, Dublin, October 1-2
4. Sacrum Profanum Festival, Poland
In venues across Krakow, contemporary music and the experimental scene collide. This year’s programme includes the opera Folie à Deux, a collaboration between British composer Emily Hall and Icelandic writer Sjón, to which artist and composer Mira Calix contributes live electronics, as well as Rondo Denoting Circle, an audiovisual structure by Anna Zaradny; and Korall Koral, an opera for children under the age of three.
Venues across Krakow, October 1-8
5. Festival Maintenant, France
This annual festival presents visual arts, music and new technologies. Highlights this year include Light Metal Music, in which the light spectrum is translated into sound frequencies; Rennais 178, in which Baroque music is altered using laptops and guitars; Septuor pour corps en mouvement, in which a musical score is dictated by body language; and Intrude – a piece based around five gigantic, luminous rabbits.
Venues around Rennes, October 7-16
6. New Sounds Live: Song of the Human, USA
British composer Pete M. Wyer presents Song of the Human, an immersive sound installation inspired by Shigeru Miyagawa’s theory that human language evolved from birdsong. ‘We use pitch, rhythm, tone and dynamic as part of our speech. Or to put it another way: when we speak, we speak in music,’ explains Wyer. Speakers are installed above, below and around the plaza of Brookfield Place, and three live performances will take place in conjunction with the installation: The Crossing & Pete M. Wyer; Sarah Neufeld and Colin Stetson; Vernon Reid and Laraaji.
Brookfield Place, New York, October 12-23
7. Listening with the Eyes: Sound Art in Spain (1961-2016), Spain
This major exhibition at Fundación Juan March traces the history of sound art produced in Spain, dating as far back as 1961, decades before the term ‘sound art’ – or the Spanish arte sonoro – was coined. It features more than twenty sculptures, as well as sound and video installations by artists including Ferran García Sevilla, Martín Chirino and Manuel Millares, as well as publications, vinyl records and cassette tapes. A specially commissioned piece by Francisco López, incorporating ambient sounds recorded in the building of the Fundación Juan March itself, will run alongside.
Fundación Juan March, Madrid, October 14-January 15
8. Reducing the Tempo to Zero, USA
A new work from artist and experimental composer Ben Vida, Reducing the Tempo to Zero is a new long-form composition for four vocalists and electronics. Informed by Morton Feldman’s String Quartet No. 2, the extended performance length of this piece means that some audience members may only experience segments of the overall composition. This way of experiencing the work eliminates familiar structural signifiers and leaves room for reconsidering how the developmental arc of a composition can function.
The Kitchen, New York, October 15
9. The Unconformity, Tasmania
This arts festival is inspired by the rare geological unconformity of Queenstown, a small mining community on Tasmania’s wild West Coast. Highlights include FLUX, a project in which Liquid Architecture and the Unconscious Collective transform an old limestone quarry into an experimental singing bowl; and Fault Traces, a work by Matthias Schack-Arnott which uses subsonic frequencies to trigger vibrational patterns on layers of percussive objects and strewn material.
Venues around Queenstown, October 15-16
10. Cycle Music and Art Festival, Iceland
Cycle Festival, now in its second year, is a platform for contemporary music, visual art and the intersection between both. In particular, the festival forges interdisciplinary productions which revolve around the theme of iterations and structured time. Featured artists this year include Asamisimasa Ensemble, German composer Carola Bauckholt and French artist Marguerite Humeau.
Venues around Kopavogur, October 27-30