22 Apr 2018, 7:30 PM - 10:30 PM
To peer into boundless black
Hearing the unsound
Knowledge of the hidden
BlackKaji. A study of the unseen, unsound, unsuspecting, unsustainable, unstable.
This is a new series conceived by Ujikaji and The Observatory.
22 April 2018
$12 ($10 for full-time students / seniors / the unemployed)
Black Axis Blk L, 01-48
Goodman Arts Centre
90 Goodman Road
Dharma × @Kok Siew Wai
Cheryl Ong × Yuen Chee Wai
Art direction by Yuen Chee Wai
After 7 albums with The Observatory, Dharma ventured forth solo. His initial experimentations with the electric guitar were with effects and later on incorporating objects together with various extended techniques. In 2013, he released his solo debut, Intergranular Space, which opened up new vistas for his guitar work. Since going solo in 2015 he has been involved in various experimental and improvised music performances most notably at the Asian Meeting Festival 2016 which featured prominent Asian improvisers. In late 2016 he formed Tenggara Trio with Yong Yandsen (Kuala Lumpur) and Ikbal Lubys (Jogjakarta).
From Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Siew-Wai Kok started out as a video artist, now active as an artist-organiser and improvised vocalist, using both conventional and unconventional vocal techniques. She studied and lived in USA from 1998 to 2005. Siew-Wai has shown her videos, performed and presented her curatorial experimental short film programmes in Asia, Europe, Canada and USA. She has participated in music festivals such as SoundBridge Contemporary Music Festival, allEars Improvised Music Festival (Norway), Asian Meeting Festival (Japan), Singapore Night Festival, Playfreely Festival (Singapore), Choppa Experimental and Improvised Music Festival (Singapore), RRRec Music Fest (Indonesia) and WSK Festival (Philippines), amongst others.
A Singaporean percussionist who is currently active in music performance and education, Cheryl regularly performs with avant-rock group, THE OBSERVATORY. Though classically trained, Cheryl struggled with the fact that classical and traditional music has constantly been divided and limited to its roles. Tired of being a mere technician, Cheryl has gone on to explore improvisational and experimental practices, hunting down new ideas and sounds. She’s always up for playing, bucking trends and going for broke.
Yuen Chee Wai
Born in 1975. Musician, artist, designer based in Singapore. Often inspired by ideas drawn from philosophical and literary texts, and perspectives glimpsed through the filmic eye and photographic lens, Yuen's stylistic oeuvre in improvised music is marked by internalised reflections on memory and loss, invisibility and indeterminacy. In 2008, he teamed with Otomo Yoshihide (Japan), Ryu Hankil (South Korea), and Yan Jun (China) to form FEN (Far East Network). FEN focuses on the continuing multifaceted networks and collaborations between Asian countries. Since its inception in 2014, Yuen is part of Ensembles Asia as Project Director for Asian Music Network, to which he co-curates the annual Asian Meeting Festival (AMF) in Japan. He is also a member of the avant-rock band The Observatory (Singapore), with whom he plays guitar, synth and electronics. With nine albums to date, including the most recent August is the cruellest (2016), The Observatory has also conceived a vanguard of initiatives such as the annual festival Playfreely, which gives artists new creative avenues for performing and working together. Both FEN and The Observatory continue to tour extensively, performing in Europe, America and Asia regularly, and has presented in MIMI Festival, Lausanne Underground Music and Film Festival, All Ears Festival and Ftarri Festival.
His Hubris (Yong Yandsen × Sudarshan Chandra Kumar)
“Saxophonist Yong Yandsen and electronic musician Sudarshan Chandra Kumar represent the small circle of musicians in Kuala Lumpur organizing a monthly improvised music event called SPIL (Serious Play Improv Lab). In interviews they both joke about small their audiences are and that no one comes back to their concerts, but in reality they serve as an important hub for both regional and international musicians on tour, which can be heard in their fluency and the unconventional ways they play their instruments.”
Takuro Mizuta Lippit – The Wire, December 2017
Yong Yandsen is an improvised saxophonist. He has played at the Kuala Lumpur Contemporary Music Festival, Asian Meeting Festival (Japan), Mosaic Festival Singapore, Choppa Eclectic Improvised Music Festival (Singapore), allEars Festival (Norway), Music Matters Festival (Sri Lanka) amongst others. Yandsen, together with Darren Moore and Brian O’Reily, form an improvised trio called Game of Patience. They have toured to Japan, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Thailand. They released debut CD album “Trial and Error” and a vinyl album "The Bad Sleeps Well".
Sudarshan Chandra Kumar has performed for the Asian Meeting Festival (Singapore), CHOPPA Music Fest (Singapore), Playfreely (Singapore), KLEX Festival (Malaysia) and Switch On Festival (Malaysia). He participates regularly in Serious Play Improv Lab (SPIL), a monthly experimental music series in Kuala Lumpur. Working with music for theatre, he is the music facilitator for Sekolah Main Wayang (2015-2018), a children’s theater workshop which emphasizes on the basics for orchestrating D.I.Y multimedia performances. Sudarshan also directed and scored music for his musical “The Propitiation of Fundamentals” (2015). Together with musician Yong Yandsen and art space owner Tey Beng Tze, LaoBan Records was established in 2017, and released its first album “clinamina” for His Hubris.
Black Axis Blk L, 01-48, Goodman Arts Centre, 90 Goodman Road