Awardee: Joe Cantrell

Emerging Fields, 2006

Joe Cantrell is a musician and multimedia artist specializing in sound art, installations, compositions and performances inspired by the nexus of technology, entropy and the access to same. Using sound as a point of entry, he creates interactive systems and performative works that call attention to the effects of decay and fixity on media, technology and ownership.  By re-imagining the function and meaning of media formats and processes, he highlights the incessant cycle of novelty and obsolescence inherent in the technological and our interactions with the waste these systems produce. He has performed and installed in numerous venues, including the 2005 CEAIT festival at the REDCAT Theater at Disney Hall in Los Angeles and the 2012 festival of the Society for Electroacoustic Music in the United States. Joe has also participated in residencies at Soundfjord in London, England and at the Inside – Out Art Museum in Beijing, China. Joe holds hold a BFA in Music Technology from the California Institute of the Arts, an MFA in Digital Arts and New Media from UC Santa Cruz and is currently pursuing a PhD in Integrative Studies with a focus on Systems Inquiry at UC San Diego.

Project: Callspace

With the advent of wireless communication, social places have become progressively more antisocial. Mobile communication devices have the ability to remove users from their surroundings and project them into a metaspace outside the physical world. _Callspace_ reverses this paradigm by giving a voice to forgotten places. _Callspace_ is a sound installation that utilizes cellular technology to network ambient sound from site-specific locations throughout a given metropolitan area. Six cellphones modified to run on solar power and answer automatically when an incoming call is received are placed in remote locations, and connections are made between these cellphones and cellular telephones located in an exhibition space. The output of each telephone is wired directly to a dedicated loudspeaker housed in a monolithic speaker enclosure. Inaccessible and uninhabited locations are chosen because their soundscapes tend to go unnoticed. The sounds inside a clock tower, atop a telephone pole, under a wind turbine: these are the voices of unique, localized areas in a world that increasingly commodifies and rarifies private space. _Callspace_ gives listeners the ability to eavesdrop on this tacit chorus, to enter a soundscape outside of their daily experience.

Collab: Redux

A collaboration between Mark Cetilia and Joe Cantrell, Redux exists as an exercise in destruction and recombination. The nature of technological growth is not unlike evolution: industry creates, destroys and recombines technologies in a mad rush to provide consumers with the best-equipped tools for survival. But by marginalizing objects that are considered obsolete, consumers and industry alike ignore the potential capabilities these objects maintain. Redux circumvents this process by creating new life from the objects of the recent past, using capabilities of the present. Redux is the cut that cures. We give new life to dying technologies that speak to us of their lives as castaways, and of a bygone era, just out of reach. Redux has been recognized with a Harvestworks artist residency.