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Performed by three members of the Isaura String Quarte
2 hours and 35 minutes

Betsy Rettig: Cello
Madeline Falcone: Viola
Emily Call: Violin

Performed at Royale Projects, Los Angeles, CA
July 31, 2021

On Saturday July 31st at Royale Projects as part of Gallery Weekend LA, Tonal Duet was performed by 3 members of the Isaura String Quartet. Starting at 4:30, the continuous performance was performed by two musicians at a time. The audience was welcome to come in and out of the performance.

Tonal Duet is the musically scored version of “Binary Complex” included in the current exhibition “Off the Charts”. The performance is contextualized by the exhibition “Off the Charts” at Royale Projects featuring works by Josh Callaghan, Luftwerk, Ken Lum, Kristin McIver, and David Schafer that transform the visual representation of data and analytics into contemporary artworks.

Tonal Duet Program

Josh Callaghan
Ken Lum
Kristen McIver
David Schafer

Royale Projects
432 S. Alameda St.
Los Angeles, CA 90013

Royale Projects is pleased to announce Off the Charts featuring works by Josh Callaghan, Luftwerk, Ken Lum, Kristin McIver, and David Schafer that transform the visual representation of data and analytics into contemporary artworks. The world in which we live in is almost entirely governed by algorithms. The volume of data being produced, gathered, analyzed, and stored has never been greater. Works included in this exhibition merge art and information making critical commentary of an increasingly networked age. 

Binary Complex is comprised of sculpture, sound, and print that structurally explore the idea of binaries using composition, color, sound, and data. The sculpture includes 2 sets of 12 bins with each color assigned a note based on the Russian composer Alexander Scriabin’s synesthetic theory of tone and color from 1909 (A-green, C-red, D-yellow, and F#-blue). Alternating the different color-note combinations from the 924 ways the two sets of bins can be arranged, Binary Complex Permutation: Alternating Score for Tonal Duet creates the digital form of the algorithmically generated sound playing throughout the space while Binary Complex Tonal Duet Score presents the musical notation that provides a score for musicians to perform using traditional instruments. 

Card image
Installation views
Photo: Rubin Diaz

102” x 102”
Printed graphic on adhesive perforated vinyl mesh
Installation view

Amy Barkow
Leslie Brack
David Schafer

November 14-December 18, 2020

Mandarin Plaza
970 N. Broadway St. #204

Untitled Logos No. 5: A Morphology of Exchange takes the form of an advertising façade combining a selection of thirty modified corporate logos from a variety of categories. This work explores how advertising codes are transferred to the consumer. By virtue of abstraction, these logos have been altered and simplified into modernists tropes, where the content and specific identity has been removed. This reduces them to forms of color and code, mimicking the corporate landscape we inhabit. The code is a form of socialization and generates a formal set of social relations analogous to money. The collected logo-signs represent a selection from banks, credit cards, oil and gas, fast food, fashion, media, entertainment, auto industries, and the military. The advertising images stage a realm of self-referential signs, and the individual is distinguished by their random selection of objects in the domain of consumption. 

I am interested in how all of these relations form a system in the industrial capitalist framework of the political economy, and where the individual is alienated by signs, and social relations are fetishized. As a play on the concept of center, Logos, is also a term used in Theology, Linguistics, and Philosophy to represent ways of theorizing the concepts of presence and origin. The context of Mandarin Plaza is significant for its history in Los Angeles and Chinese immigration and how it is structurally laid out as a mall with two levels and open floorplan representing a design strategy from the 1960’s. Immigration laws encouraged new residents into Chinatown and Mandarin Plaza which is the first major commercial center built in the Chinatown neighborhood and is continuing to attract new commercial growth. 

Foyer-LA is located in a former retail space at Mandarin Plaza and the effect of the perforated window graphic suggests multiple viewing situations. It prevents one from seeing into the gallery space but allows one to see out to the mall from the inside and observe pedestrians and viewers. This panopticon situation entails surveillance while being hidden from view behind the window. In addition, I am in interested in The Arcades Project of Walter Benjamin from the 1920’s, regarding the Parisian arcades, shops, street life and the flaneur, and how one could see their reflection superimposed onto the object of desire featured in the shop windows. I continue to be interested in the writings of William Burroughs on “societies of control”, The Society of the Spectacle by Guy Debord, and more recently Shoshana Zuboff’s Surveillance Capitalism and Naomi Klein’s The Shock Doctrine, and how they continue to speak about spectacle, consumerism, and appearances in society. With newer opportunities for surveillance from the panopticon to digital tracking and data mining, the authoritarianism of our society is invisibly woven into the new models of the social sphere. Untitled Logos No. 5: A Morphology of Exchange is a form of rebranding to question the way in which society is owned by neo-colonialist and multi-national corporations. 

Colosseum, 2020

Hoosac Institute: Journal No. 6
Curated by Jenny Perlin

An-My Lê 
Bibi Calderaro
Cristóbal Lehyt
David Schafer 
Frank Carlberg
Heide Fasnacht
Jennifer Reeves
Jon Davies
Juliet Koss
Mai-Lin Cheng
Mary Lum
Paul Mcdevitt and Luke Dowd
Rachel Urkowitz 
Regine Basha 
Sara Vanderbeek 
T. Kim-Trang Tran 
Tony Bluestone

The Hoosac Institute is a curated online platform for text and image focusing on pieces that don’t fit conventional disciplinary narratives.

Art Center College of Design
Faculty Dining Room – Hillside Campus
Pasadena, CA

Jan 15 – May 15

Laura Cooper
Joshua Holzmann
Mitchell Kane
Tom Knechtel
Olga Koumoundouros
Allison Miller
Ryan Perez
Jean Rasenberger
Jessica Rath
David Schafer
Tony Zepeda

Binary Complex-Permutation: BL/YL/GN/RD Alternating Score for Tonal Duet
36” x 42”
Epson print on Epson paper

The audio composition and visual animation was generated from a permutation based on two sets of 12 units that are composed equally of two colors. Each of the four colors are assigned a note based on Alexander Scriabin’s ‘color music’ from 1909. The permutation of possible arrangements is 924 for each set. The musical score represents the layering of the two visual sets, one set starting at the beginning, and the other starting at the end. The total length is 3 hours and 5 minutes.

Untitled Logos No. 4, 2020
Epson print on Epson paper, mounted.
34 x 84 inches

Untitled Soundtrack, 2020
Day One: Corporate jingles, instructional, self-help, spoken word, sound effects, production music
Day Two: Miles Davis, Angela Davis, Malcom X
PA speaker, turntable, records, amp, misc. hardware

This work is compiled from corporate trademarks and logos representing fast food, automobiles, gas co., banks, media, and credit cards. The texts and specific identifying content has been removed from each one to leave the abstract form and colors of the logo itself. The word Logos is not only plural for more than one logo, but is also a term used in Theology, Linguistics, and Philosophy to represent different ways of theorizing the concepts of center, presence, ground, or origin. In addition, there was a selection of audio comprised of corporate jingles, spoken word, instructional, self-help, on day one, and Miles Davis records on day two that will be emitted from an outdoor PA speaker.
DRIVE-BY-ART (Public Art in This Moment of Social Distancing) Los Angeles

Organized by Warren Neidich, Renee Petropoulos, Michael Slenske and Anuradha Vikram.
Two locations will be divided East and West of Western Avenue over two weekends.

Art Center College of Design
Spotlight Gallery

Fine Art Department
870 S. Raymond Ave. 
Pasadena, CA

Jan 15 – May 15

Laura Cooper
Joshua Holzmann
Mitchell Kane
Tom Knechtel
Olga Koumoundouros
Allison Miller
Ryan Perez
Jean Rasenberger
Jessica Rath
David Schafer
Tony Zepeda

Red Skelton: Vertical Glitch #1, 2018 
photocopy, collage, Liquitex on Bristol 
12” x 9”
Joseph McCarthy: Vertical Glitch #1, 2018 
photocopy, collage, Liquitex on Bristol 
12” x 9”

Audio CD edition of 100.


Pink and Blue is composed of a recorded interview that was conducted with Angela Davis in 1971. The voice of the person conducting the interview was removed, leaving only the responses by Angela Davis. These responses were processed with an echo and delay. This act of removing created gaps that were each replaced with five seconds of pink noise, a random noise having equal energy per octave. The word pink also references the color Baker-Miller Pink that was used in prison cells in the 70′s, to control and oppress inmates. Interweaving within these tracks are processed samples from the song, “Grinnin’ in Your Face”, a blues song by Son House.

Buy it on Bandcamp


“Pink and Blue”
Richard Telles Gallery

Pink and Blue is based on a small collage from a recent series of collages. The series is comprised of small black and white portraits that are sliced into narrow vertical or horizontal strips and then slightly rearranged so that the image is out of order but still recognizable. This reference to, or activation of facial recognition has to do with a number of considerations. William Burroughs talked about his “cut-up” technique as a way to open up language from the present and its controlling structure, and release it into the future where new associations would be present. I am interested in opening up images of these individuals, evoking the past with some familiarity, but also the present. Somewhere between recognition and an image out of order, a glitch, or an arbitrary gesture allowing noise to enter into the image. These rearranged images are collaged on a field of color that both frames and isolates them in space. Here the face functions as a site, a relay, not only to the work, writing, voice, compositions, the labor of the subject, but also to the cultural context of their contributions.

This particular installation Pink and Blue, is based on a small collage I had previously made using a 1970’s image of Angela Davis. Her pose and gesture is contemplative with her head resting on her folded arm. She looks away from the camera. This image evokes the past predominantly because of Davis’s natural Afro, which at the time was a powerful political expression of black solidarity in the face of intense racism and oppression. This was also a time when Angela Davis was in the media for her involvement with the Soledad prison controversy, the Black Panthers, and her image had become an icon of black power and resistance. Davis was a student of Herbert Marcuse at Brandeis, and was her mentor at the University of California at San Diego.

I am interested in how the ghosting of the past is present and how this Hauntological position suggests that the past is very present today. This reordered image of Angela Davis is floating in a large field of pink color on the wall. The original collage that this is based on is also pink, and was chosen more or less arbitrarily at the time. But the pink evokes a special shade and brand of pink color known as Baker-Miller Pink, developed in the 1970’s. Baker-Miller Pink is claimed to reduce hostile, violent or aggressive behavior. The color is also known as Schauss pink. Alexander Schauss did extensive research into the effects of the color on emotions at the Naval Correctional Facility in Seattle, and named it after the institute directors, Baker and Miller. The use of this color reflects the subliminal mechanisms of control and oppression that were prevalent in the 1970’s, and to the present. In this window installation, the original collage has been recreated at a visibly public scale that is visible from the space of the street and passersby. Functioning as a remixed sign, Pink and Blue, an homage to Angela Davis, is a Hauntological site that is revisiting a moment of cultural history while activating our collective amnesia.

Dermis, audio CD edition, curated by Richard Garet, Contour Editions.


Dermis project focuses on the sonic studio practice of artists making works that
are currently in process; consequently obscure, unheard of and not accessible by
the public.

Artists include:
Sabisha Friedberg, France Jobin, Brendan Murray, Maria Chavez, Andy
Graydon, Alfredo Marin, David Velez, Jim Haynes, Doron Sadja, Melissa F.
Clarke, Gill Arno, Carver Audain, Katherine Liberovskaya, Jesse Kudler, David
Schafer, Tristan Shepherd, Christopher Delaurenti, Bonnie Jones, Wolfgang Gil,
Gil Sanson, Byron Westbrook, Victoria Keddie, MV Carbon, Lesley Flanigan, Ben
Owen, Seth Cluett, Richard Garet, Stephanie Loveless, Martin Craciun, Daniel
Neumann, Tristan Perich.