performance: performance review

performance review
Ishan Clemenco
June 3, 2015

directions given – directions taken #3
Six evenings of performances featuring 24 participants
June 3, 2015, 7:00 – 9:00 PM
Directions by: Ishan Clemenco, Stephanie Ellis, Bean Gilsdorf, Eliza Gregory & Grace Leary, Yasi Pereira.

directions given – directions taken invites 24 people to design instructions or parameters for the creation of new artworks. Each participant writes a prompt and receives a prompt, to be interpreted and enacted at one of six evening performances. The series creates a daisy chain of directions given and directions taken, with the first person to issue instructions returning on the final evening to read or perform those of another participant, thereby closing the circle.


Leaving Colours Time

untitled (filter drawing progression: red/orange/aquamarine/yellow) 2010, ground pigment on optical filters, stainless steel hardware

more exhbition images


SFMOMA Open Space blog project curated by Meg Schiffler 2011

Ishan Clemenco: smoke column: screen focus (2011), 1 minute, 58 second video


Record release: 10 inch vinyl edition

Please join NOMA Gallery for the record launch of afterlight, the new 10-inch vinyl album by Ishan Clemenco. Released in conjunction with his current exhibition at NOMA Gallery; Leaving Colours Time, the album, pressed on yellow vinyl, features a work for “found” piano and a site-specific, binaural recording of vintage Hermes typewriter sound made at Headlands Center for the Arts. The record jacket cover is designed by the artist and includes an offset-printed text insert with liner notes by Dean Smith.

afterlight (1998) is the recorded fragment of a cycle of work utilizing “found pianos", discovered in old churches, theatres and music rooms. These instruments were found to have “atmospherically” tuned themselves, or were coaxed into true intonation, when the condition of equal temperament was overcome by extended playing around a particular tonal center, allowing the piano strings to be pulled into sonic resonance with the overtone series.

This in-tuneness engenders an extended exploration of true interval relationships over ostinato sequences of cross-handed playing where notes are added and inversions constructed to achieve a fluid mesh of rhythmic structure and harmonic resonance across several registers.

Many of these sequences were realized after walking on remote coastlines, recorded at twilight, in long sessions. The sound of the piano here resembles that of the tambura, absorbing the overtones generated by primary interval relationships into an overall resonance. Hand patterns adapted to piano performance were developed through the study of tala in Karnatic music with ghatam master T.H. Vinayakram, in the 1970s.