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The Window Gallery presents the work of contemporary makers of unusual and newly invented musical instruments, including emerging artists as well as recognized pioneers. The emphasis is on originality in concept and design, recognizing the seminal role of the search for new sounds in the expansion of musical horizons. Equally essential to the exhibits are notions of beauty, craft, and humor.

The Window Gallery is curated by Bart Hopkin and David Samas. Located at 55 Taylor Street in San Francisco, the gallery is open to the public Monday through Friday, 9 am – 5 pm, and during performances.

Email the Gallery Manager for information, questions, comments or to propose an installation. View past installations.

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Thu, Jan 3 — Sun, Feb 3, 2019
Atrium Display: Hacked-Found-Repurposed

Atrium Display: Hacked-Found-Repurposed by Bryan Day

Hacked-Found-Repurposed Vol. 1 is an exhibition of small-scale upcycled sound art pieces and invented instruments curated by instrument inventor Bryan Day.  The pieces on display highlight an ad-hoc approach to instrument design, using found objects to create both utilitarian and conceptual sound-art objects.  On display are works by John Collins McCormick, Alex Merlin Glow, Eoin Callery, Alex Puzzle, Jim Strong, Rob Nuuja, Bill Brovold, Victoria Shen, Bryan Day, RP Collier, Reed Ghazala, Tim Kaiser, John Bertles and Peter Blasser.
Bryan Day started designing and building musical instruments in rural Iowa in the mid-1990s.  Bryan has toured and has taught sound-invention workshops throughout the US, southeast Asia and across Europe and runs the experimental music record label Public Eyesore.  He spends his days designing, building and fixing exhibits at the Children’s Creativity Museum and Exploratorium in San Francisco. http://www.bryanday.net

Thu, Jan 10 — Tue, Feb 19, 2019
Après Baschet by Marti Ruiz

François and Bernard Baschet, working in France in the second half of the 20th century, are best known for their Cristal Baschet, an extraordinarily refined and successful musical instrument of water, glass and steel. The Cristal is but one member of the extensive and varied instrumentarium the Baschets created while simultaneously developing a cohesive system of applied acoustics. Taken together, the instruments and the acoustical system applied to sound sculpture represent a fertile corpus that allows engagement in sound exploration with no need for particular skill, as a way to engage in aesthetic exploration. In the Baschet view, sound is a powerful tool for a playful, tolerant society, in which diversity can be celebrated. François Baschet devoted himself to teaching and sharing his acoustic and engineering discoveries, offering building workshops to a variety of people, from the children at the NY School for the Deaf to young unemployed or Spanish “offenders.”

Taller Baschet continues this work under the guidance of Martí Ruiz. Since his close collaboration with François, Martí has been evolving the theory, discovering new configurations and new sound devices, and demonstrating that the Baschet principles can be applied to contemporary sounding ideas and capabilities.  He calls this approach Après-Baschet — derived works honoring this lineage. www.tallerbaschet.cat

Martí Ruiz, born in 1982, is a sound and visual artist, musician, professor and researcher at the Barcelona University’s Fine Arts Faculty. He has a BFA in music language and modern guitar from Taller de Músics, where he earned a Master’s Degree in Art and Environment. After focusing on soundscape for some years, Martí transitioned to applied acoustics with a social approach. He wrote his PhD dissertation on applied acoustic systems in Baschet Sound Sculpture.

He is co-founder and coordinator of the Baschet Sound Sculpture Workshop at UB with François Baschet, and since 2010 has been devoted to the preservation and restoration of Baschet pieces. He has worked to encourage public interaction in museums, festivals and educational institutions in Paris, Moscow, Beijing, Munich, Czech Republic, Mexico DF, Los Angeles, Osaka, Kyoto, Tokyo and now San Francisco.

Among the many new Après-Baschet instruments and sound sculptures Martí has developed from the Baschet theory are his directional tuning forks called Kouri-No-sen, and the Clavinimbus, a full acoustic tuning-fork keyboard amplified with balloons featuring a volume-tremolo pedal. In 1995 he co-founded Hamsterloco, an independent experimental electronic netlabel, and the band Híbrida, Nen i Cavall –www.nenicavall.cat, releasing music under the name of Katatsumuri since 2001. Martí is also a member of Gamelan Penempaan Guntur (Forge of Thunders), and the Gong Kebyar ensemble at the Museum of Music of Barcelona.


Mon, Feb 4 — Mon, Mar 4, 2019
Atrium Display: Musicians Make Garments

Atrium Display: Musicians Make Garments

Polymaths are often musicians and the talents and proclivities that make for great musicians quite often make for brilliant artists, engineers, mathematicians, activists, chefs, philosophers, poets, painters, cosmologists and gardeners. Society seeks to flatten these geniuses and so too often these gifts are considered tangential rather than being celebrated as the facets on a single, complex jewel.

In this series  of exhibitions we will explore non-musical works of artistic and cultural value created by members of the community primarily known for their music.

In 2018, curator David Samas commissioned five musicians to make hand painted shirts he could wear to openings and receptions. Katarina Countiss, Bob Marsh, Bryan Day, Monte Thrasher, and Mauro Ffortissimo created these unique garments each using their own visual vocabulary.

Feel free to check out some of their music on YouTube. For sales contact gallery@CenterForNewMusic.com.

Katarina Countiss is a multimedia artist based in Oakland, CA. She creates ASMR videos and enjoys exploring color and texture through light, ink, fabric and paint.

Bob Marsh is a well seasoned improviser whose work has involved shaping sounds words images ideas. Since his arrival on the west coast, multi-instrumentalist and composer Marsh has been busy with several projects. He currently leads or directs String Theory, a string ensemble focusing on textures and microtonics; the Che Guevarra Memorial Marching (and Stationary) Accordion Band, structured and free improv for six to fifteen accordions; Robot Martians, electronics and processed voice; the Out of the Blue Chamber Ensemble, a mixture of reeds and strings; Opera Viva, voiced physical theater; the Quintessentials, a quintet specializing in interpreting graphic compositions based on alterations to the Michelin Road Guide to France; and the Illuminated Orchestra, structured improves for large ensemble.  Bob Marsh tours frequently with his long term partner saxophonist Jack Wright.

Bryan Day is a improviser, instrument inventor, illustrator and installation artist based in Richmond, CA. His work involves combining elements of the natural and man-made world using field recordings, custom audio generation software and homemade instruments. Day?s work explores the parallels between the patterns and systems in nature to those in contemporary society. Day has toured throughout the US, Europe, Japan, Korea, Argentina and Mexico, performing both solo as Sistrum and Eloine and in the Shelf Life and Seeded Plain ensembles.

Monte Thrasher grew up among the prop shops, animators, sculptors and set painters of Burbank California. Craft awakens the senses and  and leads to art. A contributor to now-legendary Experimental Musical Instrument magazine, Thrasher has worked in sound sculpture since the early 80s. A critic/aesthetician as well as instrument builder, He is seeking the breakthrough that will deliver this orphan art form to the mass audience it deserves. Thrasher studied sound sculpture under Bill and Mary Buchen at SFSU, designed for motion pictures, TV and film (Star Trek the Next Generation, Steve Martin’s LA Story, Starship Troopers). He has received two certificates of merit from the City of Los Angeles for work as a muralist, fell into toy and collectables design and wrote a patent for a marvelous new material that’s as fun and versatile as fluorescent color.

Mauro ffortisimo, Argentinean/Italian/American, grew up in Argentina, where interest in art and music lead him to study classical piano and visual arts. He emigrated to California in 1981 to further his artistic explorations, taking classes in print making, sculpture and painting at San Mateo College, Art Institute, and Berkeley Extension. Mauro is a founding member of “849 Folsom Music”, a 13 member music and spoken word performance troop that brought vital energy to the San Francisco “South Market” artist underground scene in the pre-dot com years of the late 80’s. As a founding member of the Enso Art Collective and the Miles Davis Memorial Hall, Mauro has been investigating sounds with the deconstruction of pianos, becoming more able to expand the 12-tone scale.


The Window Gallery at the Center for New Music is supported by the San Francisco Arts Commission in 2016-17.
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The Window Gallery at the Center for New Music was supported by New Music USA in 2014.