Art Forms of Dimensions Tomorrow: Joe McPhee, Chris Corsano, & Ephraim Asili

Joe McPhee, photo by Peter Gannushkin

Join us for two nights of performance featuring art, music, film, poetry, performance art, and a dance party, by emerging and established legends of the avant-garde. The first of two nights of performances features Joe McPhee, Chris Corsano, and Ephraim Asili.

Events on April 13 and 14 are the culmination of the exhibition Art Forms of Dimensions Tomorrow: Sound, Black Study, and the Multidisciplinary Artist, which pairs the early art and archives of Sun Ra with contemporary sonic and sound-inspired artworks.

Matana Roberts and Kamau Amu Patton will perform on April 14, 8pm.

About the Artists & Performers

Joe McPhee is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, improviser, conceptualist and theoretician active since the height of the Black Arts Movement. A trumpeter since early youth, McPhee was inspired to take up the saxophone in 1968 after hearing the music of Albert Ayler. McPhee’s LP Nation Time (1970), recorded at Vassar’s Urban Center for Black Studies, where he was an early faculty member, has become a classic of the music of the era. “His magical take on avant-garde sax remains one of the wonders of the scene. He still has one of the most beautiful tones on the planet, even when he’s reaching for jazz’s outer limits” (Time Out New York). In addition to performing his music at the Tang (alongside frequent duo partner Chris Corsano), McPhee will also present his poetry, a performance artwork in honor of Pauline Oliveros, and a live film score to Ephraim Asili’s Many Thousands Gone (2015).

Chris Corsano has worked at the intersection of free jazz, avant-rock, and noise music since the late 1990s. Corsano’s solo music, first documented in 2006, is an always-spontaneously-composed amalgam of extended techniques for drum set and non-percussion instruments of his own making incorporated into his kit: e.g. violin strings stretched across drum heads, modified reed instruments that transform the drums into resonators. He spent 2007 and 2008 as the drummer on Björk’s Volta world tour, and has released innumerable recordings with leading lights of experimental music, including the Sunburned Hand of the Man, Ken Vandermark, Nate Wooley, Jandek, and Jim O'Rourke.

Ephraim Asili is a filmmaker living in Hudson, New York, working and teaching at Bard College. His films include documentaries about the Sun Ra Arkestra and about his own travels throughout the African Diaspora. He DJs on WGCX FM and at the semi-regular dance party Botanica. At the Tang, he will present his film work in a program interwoven with performances by McPhee and Corsano, as well as closing out the night by DJing an afterparty.

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