Corwin Series Concert: Barbara Held

Event Date: 

Sunday, March 12, 2017 - 7:30pm

Event Date Details: 

Event Location: 

  • Karl Geiringer Hall (UCSB)

Event Price: 

Admission is free.

Event Contact: 

Adriane Hill
Marketing and Communications Manager
UC Santa Barbara Department of Music
(805) 893-3230
As a part of the Corwin Concert Series, Barbara Held will present "Breathing and its Transformations" on Sunday, March 12, 2017 at 7:30 p.m. in Karl Geiringer Hall. Admission is free. Several recent events have shaped this program. The Subtropics Festival in Miami asked the composer to perform Alvin Lucier’s "Self-Portrait," a beautiful piece that he made for Held some years ago, in which sound and light are connected through the physical apparatus of an anemometer. In conversations with art historians Godfre Leung and Alexandra Alisauskas for an interview in "The Third Rail" quarterly, Held was asked about an aesthetics of the breath in her work. In the specific context of "Self-Portrait" and a series of pieces that she made in collaboration with Yasunao Tone in the ’80's, they noted the process in which “the breath, via flute, and then via other operations — both scores and machines — undergoes a transformation or conversion into a different kind of sound. Scores and machines ‘re-shape the breath’.” Held took this opportunity to make new realizations of several pieces that were composed for her a number of years ago, as well as newer work that seems related to what Leung calls transformation/reshaping/conversion across media. Several of them depend on rather delicate vintage technology.
About Barbara Held
“Known for her subtle exploration of the minutae of sonic material, she creates sensitive, focused sound work that exposes the detail of the physical space of listening in equal part to a keen attention to how we listen as bodies moving through the world.” -Seth Cluett, "Bioderivas" catalogue text, 2014
Barbara Held is a flutist and composer who lives in Barcelona, Spain. She has commissioned and performed a very personal body of new repertoire for flute by both Spanish and American composers, including Alvin Lucier’s “Self-Portrait” for flute and wind anemometer, a series of scores by Yasunao Tone that are not meant to be performed as much as transformed into sound, and early film and performance work with Carles Santos and poet Joan Brossa. 
She was flutist with New York’s Bowery Ensemble, a group with close ties to Morton Feldman, directed by Nils Vigeland. With a continuing interest in composing with sound and image, she has performed with live video artists including Ursula Scherrer, Benton C Bainbridge, and Francesca Llopis, as well as creating sound for installation pieces by visual artists such as Paloma Navares, Pere Noguera, Francesc Abad, and Eugenia Balcells. She was the creator and producer of “Music at Metrónom,” a series of concerts of experimental music in Barcelona that gave special support to collaboration between musicians and visual artists, a project that she shared with invited co-curaters such as Augusti Fernandez and Francisco Lopez; with Pilar Subira, co-curated “Possibility of Action: the life of the score” for the Documentation Center and Archive of the Barcelona MACBA museum of contemporary art during the 2008-09 season, and “Lines of Sight," a series of seven programs of experimental music and radio art for radio web macba. Her work has been presented at the LOOP Festival of Videoart, Barcelona; Soundproof Festival, London; Storefront for Art and Architecture, New York; Solianka Gallery, Moscow; Issue Project Room, New York; The Bridge, Cologne; Experimental Intermedia, New York; Grec Festival, Barcelona; Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon; Fundació Joan Miró, Barcelona; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; group show “Microcosmics” curated by Joan Fontcuberta at the Sala Metrónom in Barcelona, and “Bioderivas” at the Museo de la Naturaleza y el Hombre in Tenerife with Yapci Ramos and Richard Garet. Her work has been published by "FO A RM" magazine and "Leonardo Music Journal," and on the Lovely Music Ltd. CD, “Upper Air Observation." A joint installation with Kenneth Kirschner and programming by Wolfgang Gil was presented by Contour Editions in May of 2014 at Eyebeam in New York and she recently created “from 0," a performance/generative installation for the Signal X festival in Cagliari, Sardinia. She performs with media artist Benton C Bainbridge using a custom software and hardware A/V synthesis system. Their generative audiovisual installation Observatory / Lisa Joy is currently on view as part of “Escuchar con los ojos. Arte sonoro en España, 1961-2016," a group exhibition of Spanish Sound Art from the past half century at the Juan March Foundation in Madrid. She teaches as part of the University of Barcelona’s Master in Sound Arts program.
Barbara Held