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Graphic Notation 101: Ten x Ten 2015 Kick-off!

  • Spudnik Press Cooperative 1821 W Hubbard St. #302 Chicago, IL USA (map)

Ten x Ten 2015 Kick Off Event: Graphic Notation 101

Free lecture with Katherine Young and Jordan Martins.

Meet the 2015 Ten x Ten artists and musicians!

Since the early 20th century, artists have found inspiration in the pure abstraction of instrumental music. There has been a rich history of synaesthetic approaches to relating color to timbre and tonality in both scientific and highly subjective ways. More recently, music notation incorporating graphic elements outside of the traditional staff have served as a way to travel the territory between improvisation, chance operations, and non-traditional composition while negotiating the balance between the interpretive power of the performer and the single-sourced autonomy of the composer. With the help of composer and bassoonist Katherine Young and visual artist and musician Jordan Martins, Graphic Notation 101 will explore the history of some of these practices as well as underline the compositional and interpretive techniques as play.

Jordan Martins is a Chicago-based visual artist, curator, educator, and musician. He received his MFA in visual arts from the Universidade Federal da Bahia in Salvador, Brazil in 2007 and has been an instructor at North Park University since 2008. As Co-Director of the Comfort Station, he oversees general programming, gestates new projects, and coordinates partnerships with outside organizations and artists. Martins’s visual work is based in collage processes, including mixed media two dimensional work, photography, video, and installation. His recent work is primarily concerned with visual codes, camouflage, and gestalt theory. As a musician, Martins collaborates with Angela James and Quarter Mile Thunder, in addition to improvised performances with musicians from varied backgrounds. He co-founded the Comfort Music series in 2011, directed the Relax Attack Jazz Series from 2011-2013, and is currently on the programming committee for the Chicago Jazz Festival.

Composer, bassoonist, and improviser Katherine Young creates acoustic and electro-acoustic music that has been described by the New York Times as “raw, wailing, coloristic,” and New Music Box has noted “her visceral approach to sound…her attentiveness to the smallest details of timbre; her adventurousness in using instruments in unexpected ways.” Ensemble Dal Niente, Talea Ensemble, Flux Quartet, String Orchestra of Brooklyn, Spektral Quartet, Fonema Consort, Till by Turning, and others have performed her compositions. Her solo work as well as her work with her quartet Pretty Monsters has garnered praise in The Wire, Downbeat, and All About Jazz . In addition, her multi-movement installation-performance piece Diligence Is to Magic as Progress Is to Flight, written in close collaboration with violinist Austin Wulliman, is recently out on Parlour Tapes+  as a stereo recording and do-it-yourself cassette installation box set.

Ten x Ten is a collaborative project between visual artists and musicians under the curatorial guidance of three distinct Chicago organizations: Elastic Arts, Homeroom, and Spudnik Press. Now in it’s fourth iteration, the project has expanded from one to four events over the course of eight months.  The focus of Ten x Ten 2015 is to bring together visual artists and musicians that incorporate improvisation into their art practice. With Elastic Arts Foundation as guest curator, the project highlights the genre of jazz and investigates how artists across media interpret improvisation. Curators Dave Rempis and Paul Giallorenzo have hand-selected ten musicians to create an ensemble that will perform the new works commissioned through this project. Each musician will compose one track, each created in partnership with a visual artist. Homeroom curator Colin Palombi has invited ten visual artists to design a corresponding 18” x 18” artwork that will be produced in an edition of ten hand printed serigraphs. A limited edition catalog of the prints will be paired with the vinyl record and distributed as a collectable compilation.

Please join the Ten x Ten mailing list to hear updates as the project develops over the course of the year and visit for weekly blog updates.


2015 Visual Artists

2015 Musicians

Earlier Event: February 7
Pal-entine's Day