MATRIX 258 features the work of artist and electroacoustic composer Tarek Atoui (b. 1980). Born in Lebanon and based in Paris, Atoui initiates and curates multidisciplinary interventions, concerts, performances, and workshops. His work often radiates around large-scale, collaborative performances that develop from extensive research into the history of music and instrumentation, while also exploring new methods for production. Using custom-built electronic instruments and computers, Atoui references social and political realities in his work and presents music and new technologies as powerful tools of expression and identity.At the core of his work is an ongoing reflection on the instrument and the act of performance as a complex, open, and dynamic process.
Education and social connection are integral aspects of Atoui’s practice. For example, for the 2013 Sharjah Biennial 11 Atoui produced WITHIN, a sound program based on research into the ways in which deaf people experience and perceive sound. For his MATRIX project, Atoui will build on WITHIN, designing and fabricating instruments for deaf audiences. At the core of his work is an ongoing reflection on the instrument and the act of performance as a complex, open, and dynamic process.
For the first part of his MATRIX project, in March, Atoui will be in residence at UC Berkeley, coteaching an undergraduate seminar with Greg Niemeyer, who teaches in the Department of Art Practice and is director of the Berkeley Center for New Media. As part of the course, Atoui will collaborate with the students to build instruments using 3D printing and other technologies that will be played in a series of Bay Area concerts in the fall. During his March residency, Atoui will lecture on his interest in creating instrumentation for the hearing impaired and the DeafSpace Project developed by Gallaudet University in Washington, DC, as part of the Art, Technology, and Culture Colloquium at the David Brower Center on March 9. Atoui will also present a concert of his own music at Meyer Sound on March 20.