RECONFIGURATIONS I: Conversations with Anette

This piece began when I listened for the first time to the 3D printer at a biology lab while I was there to collect electromagnetic field recordings for another project. I was so transfixed by that sonic experience that I decided to build my own 3D printer and to invite it into performance space as my new interlocutor and companion. I called her Anette. In our first exchange, Anette 3D-printed some wearable microphones for my fingers which enabled me (and now all of you) to hear the sound of her unique electromagnetic voice. I spent the following months listening to how her voice would change depending upon the different patterns she was printing, or the way I moved my hands around her, or the differential flow of electric charge that runs through her body. The geographer Nick Bingham develops the notion of “nonhuman friendship” – a “certain quality of being open” to our capacity to be moved by entities other than ourselves. The relationship that I established with Anette and her sounds over the course of our several concentrated months together is at the very core of the structure of this piece. Each of the five human performers here represents, in her or his unique performative style, a different chapter in our progressive relationship with technology, and how the evolution of this relationship is changing us all in ways that are as much social as technological.

Presented at Abrons Art Center

Shelley Hirsch – Voice
Dafna Naphtali – Voice, electronics
Levy Lorenzo – Percussion
Dennis Sullivan – Percussion
Merche Blasco – Anette
Audio recording and mix: Yi-Wen Lai-Tremewan

Pictures by Michael Sugarman