Musician/artist Claire Chase and anthropologist/author Eduardo Kohn are both contributors to “SONIC MATTER_openlab: The Witness,” a project inspired by the visionary work of Pauline Oliveros, which brings together “artists, scientists, activists, and local groups through joint sonic, anthropological, ecological, sociological, and site-specific work processes in different parts of the world.” In this episode of “Artists On Writers | Writers On Artists,” Chase and Kohn talk about a wide range of subjects including the many instruments that produce sound and music, the virtue of play inside of a creative practice, and what it means as artists to face the limits and the possibilities of oneself.
Eduardo Kohn’s forthcoming Forest for the Trees will be published by Jonathan Cape-Penguin Books.
Claire Chase is a musician, interdisciplinary artist, and educator. Described by The New York Times as “the most important flutist of our time,” Claire has given the world premieres of hundreds of new works by a new generation of artists, and in 2013 began a 24-year commissioning project called Density 2036. She co-founded the International Contemporary Ensemble in 2001, was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2012, and in 2017 was awarded the Avery Fisher Prize from Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. Claire is currently Professor of the Practice of Music at Harvard University’s Department of Music and a Creative Associate at the Juilliard School. She lives in Brooklyn.
Eduardo Kohn conducts anthropological research in Ecuador’s Upper Amazon. His book How Forests Think won the 2014 Gregory Bateson Award for best book in Anthropology. It is translated into several languages and has inspired the planetary ecological imaginary in a surprisingly diverse number of ways ranging from an eponymous symphony premiering at Lincoln Center, to museum exhibits. His current book, Forest for the Trees, will be published by Jonathan Cape–Penguin Books. He teaches at McGill University in Montreal.