VOICE IMAGES is a new choral composition that responds to the unique architecture and acoustics of the Swiss Church in London. Devised for an ensemble of six singers, it incorporates three distinct compositions or ‘voice-images’; sonic representations of delirium. Each ‘voice-image’ is designed to be modular — in conversation harmonically and timbrally with one another — and plays with a different cluster of words which sound alike yet shift in meaning with the change of a vowel or consonant. During the performance up to three compositions will occur simultaneously: from the incisive sonority of two singers performing a duet to the polyphonic harmonies of several compositions occurring at one time. The intensity and audible perceptibility of these pieces will transform throughout, altered by the singers’ movement and proximity to each other within the space.
VOICE IMAGES builds on Louisa Fairclough’s solo exhibition, Ground Truth, at Danielle Arnaud Gallery in 2011. The show included two 16mm film installations: Bore Song (2011) and Song of Grief (2013), which formed a minor sixth interval when heard together. This tonal, as well as aesthetic, resonance led Fairclough to consider the works as modular, correlating with Glover’s interest in the perception of repeated musical intervals.
Glover and Fairclough have collaborated on a number of compositions since 2014 including Awkward Relaxed (2014), I wish I could be a stone (2014) and Compositions for a Low Tide (2014), as well as two expanded film installations: Can People See Me Swallowing (2014) and Absolute Pitch (2014). This is the first time they have expanded their research into tonal modularity into a live choral manifestation.
VOICE IMAGES has been workshopped with, and will be performed by the Dieci Voices — a professional vocal ensemble based in London.
In conjunction with the performance Fairclough is also presenting A Song Cycle for the Ruins of a Psychiatric Unit, a solo exhibition at Danielle Arnaud Gallery 18 November — 9 December 2017.
Louisa Fairclough's practice takes the form of film loops, performances, field recordings and drawings. In 2016 she was awarded the CMIR Arnolfini bursary for the sculptural film Awkward Relaxed (forthcoming). Sounding grief: The Severn Estuary as an emotional soundscape co-authored with Owain Jones led to drawings and field recordings from the Thames that were shown at Estuary Festival (2016). Can People See Me Swallowing showed at Contact Film Festival, Apiary Studios (2016), Absolute Pitch and Composition for a Low Tide were commissioned by Whitstable Biennale 2014, Jeannie commissioned by Bristol New Music in 2014, Song of Grief shown at Film in Space, Camden Art Centre (2013), Bore Song acquired by CAS for The Wilson (2013) and recently shown at Rojas + Rubensteen Projects in Miami (2017). Louisa is Associate Lecturer at Oxford Brookes and University of Falmouth. She is passionate about experimental film, and co-founded BEEF in Bristol in 2015.
Richard Glover is a composer and writer based in Birmingham, UK. His music explores gradual process, perception in reductionist sound environments, performer interaction, and experimental approaches to notation. His portrait cd Logical Harmonies was released by Another Timbre to widespread acclaim in 2013, and his music has been performed internationally by ensembles such as the Bozzini Quartet, musikFabrik, BBC Concert Orchestra, and the Birmingham Contemporary Music Group.
He co-authored the book Overcoming Form with Bryn Harrison, with whom he is currently working on a major publication with Bloomsbury on the temporal experience of experimental musics, due for release in 2018. He has published book chapters and articles on Phill Niblock, Minimalism and Technology, and the perception of sustained tone musics. He is currently Reader in Music at the University of Wolverhampton.
VOICE IMAGES is part of Being and Appearing, a programme of contemporary art curated for the Swiss Church in London by Kirsty White. http://beingandappearing.org.uk
Kindly supported by the Swiss Church in London, University of Wolverhampton and Arts Council England.