Alisa is a member of this year’s All Girl Electronic program. They create work across experimental fiction and poetry, soundscapes and installation that conveys a sense of void or space, cinematic abstraction, urgency and sinister fairytale narratives.
As host of FBi Radio’s Pure Space and Triple J’s Mix-Up Andy Garvey introduces some of the world’s most exciting electronic acts to Sydney airwaves. Her electro and acid tinged sensibilities have also earned her regular DJ slots at Club 77, Vibe Positive and Lucid. Andy’s discerning taste and genuine passion for local and emerging artists is what makes her one of the most loveable and trusted figures in Australia’s underground dance music community.
Brian Fuata is a Samoan writer and performance maker born in Wellington, New Zealand and works and lives in Sydney. Alongside his solo practice, he is part of the duo Wrong Solo with Agatha Gothe-Snape.
Fuata has performed internationally and nationally at Gertrude Contemporary, Melbourne (2017), Performa, New York (2015); Carriageworks, Sydney (2015); The Poetry Project, New York (2015); UnionDocs, New York (2015); Chisenhale Gallery, London (2015); Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne (2014); Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney (2013); and Artspace, Sydney (2011).
Italian-born Elena Colombi will be making her hotly anticipated Australian debut at SOFT CENTRE. Elena has gained notoriety for her excellent NTS show, which traverses industrial rhythms, pulsing techno, ambient atmospheres, synthesised sounds, freaky disco, balearic love affairs, proto-house, and more. Throughout the course of 2018 Elena has moved from strength to strength, playing at De School, Dekmantel Sao Paolo and CTM’s Caustic/Cohesion show in Berghain.
The installations of Ella Barclay serve as technological tableaus, directing us to the physicality of hardware, the ethereal nature of data and the alchemical transformation of ideas into matter. She employs a range of media to explore some of the less tested contentions of our time – the power of text as technology, the erraticism of network architectures, myth making and the internet – as well as offering a reflection on 20th century techno-utopianism. Ella is developing “A Giddiness Best Left Unsaid”, a new large-scale installation for CPAC’s Switch Gallery.
Sydney underground mainstay Fabricsmelds propulsive electronics with expansive and affected spectral textures. The higher emotions achieved on his debut AfterHour EP InnerTerror will be dragged kicking and screaming into the real world in a full on assault of pulsating rhythms and noise.
Melbourne’s friendships are an A/V duo who play chaotic future sounds, storming drum'n'bass, post-warp slammers and searing, ear-shearing techno. Their live show projects large scale, dark and brooding visual imagery that explores primal elements of life; animals, the human body, paint, pattern and faces. Their paintings feature drooling, gnashing dogs; an obese man on an invisible crucifix blurting “God Bless America,”; a couple embracing, mouths wide open; blue and brown smeared figures, meshed with each other cathartically. They’re friendships. When they feel like killing, they murder.
Gas is the sometimes solo project of Sydney based artist and musician Del Lumanta. With a restrained urgency, their music forces meditation on modern restlessness. Their other music projects include Call Compatible, Video Ezy (Paradise Daily), Skyline (Nice Music) and Basic Human (Meatspin).
Guy Ruin (Rowan Savage) is a Sydney-based electronic musician. He makes deconstructed Vogue and Ballroom beats, which refashion the archive of queer sensibilities and femme and masculine energies ... but make it darker!
House Of Vnholy "CS18.104.22.168"
House of Vnholy (pronounced un-holy) is the moniker for experimental multi-disciplinary artist, Matthew Adey. Based in Melbourne, HØV is known for their dark
and macabre performance art style driven by the neo-gothic. HØV is designing a brand new installation for the Hopper Gallery called CS22.214.171.124 (celestial sphere parts 1, 2, 3 and 4). CS126.96.36.199 explores the abstract qualities of spherical astronomy and the illusion of the 3rd.
After closing out the Turbine Hall in 2017, Steeplejack label boss and Club D’erange resident Harold is once again returning to deliver his singular brand of hypnotic and hyper-emotional dance music. His ability to fluidly adapt to crowd and environment is paired with a deep trust in the unknown and unexpected. The feeling is agitation, verging on trolling.
Born in the heart of Western Sydney, Youssef’s practice explores the stifling white heat of global xenophobia with deeply personal and universal ruminations that layer the smell, sights and textures of her ancestral homeland, Lebanon.
Koco Carey is a Western Sydney based ‘fakaleiti’ artist, with a movement-based practice focusing on queer belonging and cultural performativity. Together with experimental ballroom producer Guy Ruin (Rowan Savage) and members of Slé, Koco will be performing two movement pieces that deconstruct vogue and ballroom history.
Kusum Normoyle is a musician and artist working with voice for performance and installation. She takes screaming, feedback, resonance and intervention and puts them to work in gallery, experimental and dance music contexts. Her work investigates aesthetic and literal expressions of the voice and body, through sound materials, noise making and their relationship to location and environment.
Her work has been included in numerous national and international galleries and events including TarraWarra Biennial 2018: From Will to Form, MAAS/The Wellcome Collection, The Substation, Bergen Kunsthall, Dark MOFO, Red Bull Music Academy, Artspace Sydney, Bergen Kunsthall, Primavera: Young Australian Artists, MCA Sydney, Redlands Konica Minolta Art Prize, ISSUE Project Room NYC, Artspace Sydney, Superdeluxe at Artspace for the 17th Biennale of Sydney, Liquid Architecture, N.K Berlin, UrBANGUILD JPN, Biennial of Graphic Art, Slovenia, Dunedin Public Art Gallery, City Gallery Wellington.
A celebration of vulnerability between melding identities and contexts. Using themes of hardship, desire and uncertainty as a path to intricacy, fragility and beauty. Examining the idea of being dissolved into predetermined culture with exploration and reaction to exoticistaion and otherness. Existing somewhere between the fine line of being visible and invisible; a kaleidoscope of individuality within cultures.
Unwilling to compromise. Serwah Attafuah (DISPOSSESSED, NASHO), Hannah Lockwood (Phile and solo) and Heli Newton (NASHO) are hellish marauders bringing visceral sounds towards those who stand still. MANA will perform live and collaborate with Melbourne based visual artist Tristan Jalleh to produce a multi-screen AV experience for the Marsden Gallery.
MEAGAN STREADER "Response VII (Partition III)"
Meagan Streader’s work pushes the limits of light within sculpture and installation. Reflecting the Minimalist art of the Light and Space movement, Streader manipulates, reinterprets and extends upon the boundaries of constructed spaces. Through site-specific interventions, her multidimensional use of light re-orientates the viewer’s relationship to the pre-existing architecture and scale of a given space.
Response VII (Partition III) responds to the geometry of a shipping container, tracing its structure in light and dividing the space into skewed segments. The work presents a contrast between the established construction of the container by redefining the steel tunnel into a seemingly stretched and continuous linear corridor for viewers to investigate.
Meuko! Meuko! is one of the many exciting young artists coming out of Taiwan’s experimental club community. Components of local experimental beats and a wide gamut of electronic music draws from Taipei’s irregular architecture, muggy, emissions-filled air, and hectic streetscapes, while Mandarin Chinese and Japanese influences marry intricate beats and whispering lyrics. All these tiny elements serve as pondering points on the darkness that underpins the most intense emotions of the city’s aggregations.
Mikaela Stafford’s interdisciplinary practice is predominantly centred around light-based works spanning across installation, performance and video art. Typically responsive to place and architecture, her investigations into concepts of the moving image and temporality will be mediated on the lawns of the Casula Powerhouse. Playing on histories gone and yet to come, Mikaela’s characteristically luminous and large scale work will be positioned and designed to engage the audience’s corporeality and consciousness.
Milkffish is an experimental songstress who approaches art and music with a childish curiosity. As a participant of the All Girl Electronic program at the Information+Culture Exchange she is developing a unique sound that blends Ableton, her voice, field recordings, bass guitar and her godmothers' bandurria.
Mossy 333 is a multi-disciplinary artist focused on painting, music, and performance. Her stage work evokes insight to the subjectivity of her trans feminine experiences regarding body and movement, casting a critical gaze on heteronormative cis-gendered conditioning. Her performances demystify the often essentialised idea of a trans woman, to remind people that “trans women are women with autonomy and complexities”.
mpeg.fauna is the debut performance of A/V edutainment duo Thick Owens and Keanu Hoi. Their performance of ‘Risk Terrain’ uses sourced bodycam footage, missing-data sets and Google Earth’s photogrammetry techniques to dissect our present surveillance state and postulate a solarpunk future. Rhythmic Noise and high-velocity Glitch will soundtrack their investigation. This is dancing with a didactic edge.
Nicola Morton is an Asian-Australian artist approaching analogue synthesizers and drum machines with an experimental and improvised process. Her recognizable sound is characterised by off-kilter moments, toy-sampling and a fat analogue bass. She’s currently mentoring for the All Girl Electronic program at the Information and Cultural Exchange in Parramatta.
Melbourne’s Papaphilia aurally interrogates the aesthetics of political representation, exploring how sensorial disorientation informs collective belonging. She blends the poetics of exaltation and sorrow from 90s dance music, RnB, disco, pop and traditional pop standards, into an electronic palette drawn from the dystopian poetics of contemporary technological disposability. Slopped pop samples morph into the stoned rhythms of backwashed synths that ebb from the rhythmic flow of acid techno to deep house.
Together with SIMONA and Mossy333, Papaphilia is presenting ‘Thresholds’, a cross-disciplinary performance that reimagines the liminal space between music, architecture, the body and our senses.
Active since the late ’90s, Passenger of Shit is one of the most prominent members of the Australian breakcore underground, and one of few local musicians specializing in horrorcore and harsh noise. He is known for his unapologetic, everything-in-excess approach to electronic music, which he refers to as “erotic speedcore” or “sadcore.” Expect ridiculous bpms, woodchipper-fed breaks, cheesy melodies and unapologetic profanities.
Australia’s leading AV artist Robin Fox is presenting Single Origin; the third in his series of works for laser and sound that explore the possibilities of mechanically induced synaesthesia. Beginning with Monochroma (2004) for a single green laser and developing into the stunning RGB Laser Show (2013) this new work sees significant development in the connection between the voltages that make sound and the voltages that cause the laser projector to describe the geometry of that sound. In previous works it was this relationship between sound and light that provided the basis for every moment of the show. This new work allows space for separation. Renowned for making unique, expansive and intense sound worlds (see releases on Editions Mego among other labels) Fox blends his split A/V personality in Single Origin composing what is essentially a concerto for a laser beam.
Slim Set are Western Sydney rap duo MC Dev and DJ Atro. Not content with regurgitating boom bap (like their predecessors) or trap (like their peers), Slim Set’s hybrid, high-octane sound is an anomaly within the Australian hip hop landscape, drawing from grime, club music and MC culture as their references. As a live act, Slim Set’s energy and hype is unrivalled.
Simona Castricum is a musician and Ph.D. candidate in architecture at the University of Melbourne. Her practice explores non-binary and borderline spaces between belonging, euphoria, desolation and aggression—tied together by narratives of gender nonconformity, queer cities and relationships. Through music, performance, typography and image-making, Simona’s creative praxis centres catharsis and empathy to reflect upon effective conditions and provoke transformative reflections in liminal space.
Sonya is a classically-trained improviser and experimental vocalist known for her striking performances of major vocal works and transfigurative improvisations.
She uses vast techniques and gestures to highlight the fullest capabilities of the voice as a material of artistic expression; shaping colour, texture and line into pattern and form. Surpassing genre and expressionism, she is guided by a process of deep listening and reverence for ‘the moment’.
The Splinter Orchestra, formed around 2002, is a Sydney based large-scale ensemble, consisting of a fluctuating number of members with various backgrounds: improvisation, jazz, classical, electronic, electro-acoustic, sound art, visual art, environmental sound, acoustic ecology and field recording. Despite its size (which can be 30+) the Splinter Orchestra tends towards individually minimal contributions and the ensemble is based on a social, democratic, gender equal, and non-egotistical view towards cooperation via improvisation, conceptual ideas and site-specific conditions. Every Splinter Orchestra performance unfolds a unique improvisational sonic ecology combining highly developed music skills with thoroughly experimental sound-making and an intuitive compositional repertoire built from years of collective engagement.
Cult circuit bending band Toy Death modify children's electronic toys and wear human-sized cartoonish costumes to create a show like no other. Toydeath produce live music from their tortured treasure-trove of modified children toys including guitars, talking dolls and alphabet apples resulting in a surreal deluge of colour and craziness. Toydeath is part performance, part music and features hilarious toyworld pranksters: Dr Bitey, Agent Orange and Super Dad. Get ready for some hyperactive hootenanny as they unleash the contents of a toy box six-year-olds would kill for!
In Jalleh’s work false worlds act as composites of multiple times and new fictional realities to reimagine the everyday and explore attitudes towards the digital. Through a process of combining photographs with hundreds of Google images, Jalleh constructs virtual installations that merge architectural, cinematic and video game aesthetics into immersive hyper-realities. Tristan is collaborating with MANA to produce a multi-screen AV experience for the Marsden Gallery.
Ziúr’s music beckons you into an alternate world. Pitched up pop music gives way to a death metal blast beat. Strange elfin voices sing over spiralling rhythms that feel like entire structures moving. Ziúr’s subversive productions and bewildering DJ sets have landed her on the esteemed Discwoman roster. With recent releases on Planet Mu and Objects Limited, she’s quickly become one of the most in demand names in the experimental club scene.
Planet Mu label boss, Warp alumni and Aphex Twin collaborator µ-Ziq is making his exclusive Australian appearance at SOFT CENTRE 2018. Considered one of the founding fathers of Britain’s late 90’s braindance/IDM scene, Mike Paradinas has since released over 350 records on Planet Mu, including seminal albums by Luke Vibert, Jlin, Venetian Snares and Ital Tek. Mike’s live A/V show will be a genre-hopping sonic storm of past experiments and new material.