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Ashley Bellouin and Ben Bracken

Ashley Bellouin and Ben Bracken make music with both traditional and handmade instruments that exploit the natural overtones and sympathetic vibrations generated by highly redundant tuning systems. Minimal structures and simple harmonic relationships give rise to meditative washes of sound. Each composition is constructed by considering the physical site, the materials used in the construction of the instruments, and the interplay between the two. Their performances are a mixture of the imagined and real, natural phenomena, and direct action. Ashley and Ben have been awarded collaborative residencies at the Paul Dresher Ensemble Artist Residency Center, the Djerassi Resident Artists Program, and EMS in Stockholm, Sweden. Ashley Bellouin's work explores the merging of sound art, electroacoustic composition, and instrument building. She focuses on the studies of sonology, psychoacoustics, and the interaction between sound and architecture. Her compositions use the sonic potential contained within a single musical gesture, using electronics to develop latent qualities. Spatialization, beat frequencies, auditory illusions, and microtonal tunings are frequent compositional tools. Ashley holds an M.F.A. in Electronic Music from Mills College. She has been awarded a YBCAway grant from Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and has held residencies at the Paul Dresher Ensemble Artist Residency Center, the UC Berkeley Center for New Media, the Djerassi Resident Artists Program, Sitka Center for Art and Ecology, and EMS in Stockholm, Sweden. Ashley currently lives in Oakland, CA. Ben Bracken makes music and installations with acoustic and electronic sounds. His work oscillates from performance to installation, often blurring the lines between the two. The location of the event becomes an active participant, intimately shaping the nature and direction of each work. His previous musical groups include Flashpapr, Remote Viewing Ensemble, and Date Palms. Ben has improvised with Le-Quan Ninh, Kevin Drumm, Peter Kowald, Chris Cutler, Phil Minton, Werner Dafeldecker, Fred Van Hove, and Johannes Bauer, among others. He often collaborates with filmmakers and visual artists including Paul Clipson, John Davis, Chris Fraser, and Kerry Laitala. Currently, Ben collaborates with Ashley Bellouin on performances, recordings, and installations with handmade instruments and electronics. He resides in Oakland, CA, and works at Cycling ‘74, the developers of Max, a digital signal processing software environment.



Thursday, January 21, 2016. 07:30 PM




Department of Music