Over the past few months, Samo, Ryan, and I (Masary Studios) have been working on an exciting commission by the Boston Center for the Art's Cyclorama. In May (just two weeks before my wedding!), the staff at the BCA approached us with an opportunity: they hoped to apply for a grant from the Barr Foundation that would support an artist and an organization in a risk-taking endeavor. I loved that we were called for such an opportunity.
As this was to be a site-specific work (our speciality), we dove deep into the history of the Cyclorama - originally built to display murals of the Gettysburg war in the round - as well as into the grid that hangs in the space by Buckminster Fuller. The vivid imagery of the murals, and the formulas of Bucky's work swirled in my head.
We submitted a proposal that revolved around combing these pieces of inspiration, landing on the word NO. These two letters mean so many things: an abbreviation for "number", a scolding term, one of the first words a child learns (and misuses), an abstraction of justice, a tool to empower, or the spelling of "know."
At the end of the summer, we found out that the grant was awarded, and have been working ever since to create a bold, immersive work for this special space!
For the production, I'm composing new music for 8 percussionists, and 4 vocalists, whom will be dispersed through the cathedral like space (the acoustics are CRAZY!) We are using the words of Boston-based poets, in reaction to the narrative of "no", in the piece. There will be structures, gorgeous lighting, and projected imagery, in sync with our playing. We are so excited to bring this work to life, and thankful to the staff and supporters at the BCA for allowing us the opportunity to experiment and create something brand new!
Here's a few behind the scenes photos! The Cyclo is massive, and such a beautiful canvas...