top of page

CrOsS-sEcTiOn (2020)

Soprano saxophone, voice, fixed media electronics

Two acrylic artworks on canvas: a vibrant painting on the left and a framework 3-D cube on the right

This piece was written in response to an art installation, Collection Ensemble, at the University of Michigan Museum of Arts (UMMA) commissioned by the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance’s “Site + Sounds: Musical Labels Project. One of their thematic collections is "Building Blocks” which consists of two acrylic canvas paintings by two different artists: Untitled Cube (1969) by Alvin D. Loving, and Simpsonville (1980) by Edward Avedisian. This musical piece is inspired by these two paintings which are exhibited next to each other in the museum. There is a sense of conflict in the nature of the two works where Avedisian’s piece appears energetic in vivid colors and shapes, while Loving’s three-dimensional work has more geometrical strictness. Such conflicting balance between the two artworks is reflected in the compositional structure of the piece in terms of control of timbre. While the electronic part is in a fixed form, the acoustic instruments have an open structure to explore timbres that are determined by the performers in their own interpretation of graphic notations. In connection with the idea of building community blocks, the samples in the electronic are daytime city sounds collected in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The exchange between the acoustic timbre exploration and everyday sound gestures in the electronics invites you to experience a new exchange between you and the painting.

bottom of page