Performing Particle Matter with Itziar Barrio at Smack Mellon

Sat, April 15 at 7pm, at Smack Mellon, join exhibiting artist Itziar Barrio in collaboration with Seth Cluett for a performance of Particle Matter. FREE info here:

Particle Matter is an audiovisual work created in collaboration with composer and sound designer Seth Cluett that Smack Mellon will present as a live performance activation in conjunction with Itziar Barrio’s solo exhibition, did not feel low, was sleeping. A materialist investigation into matter and multitudinous manifestations of the micro, Particle Matter approaches its subject in a rhizomatic fashion, utilizing the language of the montage–the dialectical technique of producing a new composite whole from fragments of moving images and sounds–to explore the forces catalyzing and created by the movements of the fragmented and microscopic; the pieces left over.

Many of the sound recordings included in Particle Matter were carried out at the historic anechoic chamber at Nokia Bell Labs (NJ), which absorbs over 99.995% of the incident acoustic energy above 200 Hz, and is considered one of the quietest places on Earth. Barrio and Cluett approach Particle Matter from the horizontal convergence of all the agents involved: images of geological phenomena, steam, gas, and particles; audio recordings of protests, dust of different origins. The live performance will expand on the original audiovisual work to feature live sound and image. Recordings from current protests as well as audio footage recorded in the anechoic chamber at Nokia Bell Labs will complement content from the original film.

Itziar Barrio is a multimedia artist based in NYC. She is internationally recognized for her contributions to the intersections of art, film, and technology. Her interdisciplinary, boundary breaking work has been exhibited at art institutions across the United States, Latin America, and Europe including: PARTICIPANT INC (NYC), MACRO Museum (Rome), MACBA Museum (Barcelona), Belgrade’s Contemporary Art Museum, Museo del Banco de la República (Bogotá), Salzburger Kunstverein, and the Havana Biennial. She teaches at the School of Visual Arts (NYC) and Sarah Lawrence College (NY), and has lectured internationally. Her monographic exhibition, BY ALL MEANS (2018), was curated by Johanna Burton, and her forthcoming monograph will be published by SKIRA in 2023. Barrio’s work has been written about in ARTFORUM, Art in America, The New York Times, The Brooklyn Rail, ART PAPERS, and BOMB among others. She has been awarded the Spanish Academy in Rome Fellowship and is currently a fellow at the New Museum’s NEW INC incubator, where she began developing the robotics works that will be on display at Smack Mellon. 

Seth Cluett is a composer, performer, and visual artist. With work ranging from photography and drawing to installation, performance, and critical writing, his “subtle…seductive, immersive” (Artforum) sound work has been characterized as “rigorously focused and full of detail” (e/i) and “dramatic, powerful, and at one with nature” (The Wire). The recipient of grants from Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Fund, NYSCA, and Meet the Composer, his work has been presented internationally at venues such as The Whitney Museum, MoMA/PS1, Moving Image Art Fair, CONTEXT Art Miami, GRM, and STEIM. He has received commissions from The International Contemporary Ensemble, TAK, Ensemble Offspring, and the Hong Kong Sinfonietta amongst others. Cluett is Artist-in-Residence at Nokia Bell Labs and Director of the Computer Music Center at Columbia University where he is on the faculty of music composition and serves as Assistant Director of the Sound Art MFA Program.