In Events, Museum of Art, School of Music
Music Performance

Christian Asplund (left) and Steve Ricks (right) rehearse in front of “Windswept” by Patrick Dougherty. Asplund and Ricks will perform as part of a musical event hosted by BYU’s Museum of Art. (Courtesy of BYU Museum of Art)

Students and faculty from the School of Music will explore the themes of two current BYU Museum of Art (MOA) exhibitions — “Windswept” by Patrick Dougherty and “Where the River Widens” by Danae Mattes — during “Nature Transformed: Musical Experience at the MOA, a concert on Thursday, March 7, at 7 p.m.

The event will feature three original compositions performed by their respective composers: “Wave Lapse” by Asher Bay, “Fire Festival” by Scott Nelson and “Woven” by music professors Steve Ricks and Christian Asplund, known by their stage name Ricksplund.

Ricks sees the concert as an “intersection between different art forms.”

Each piece will feature the artists’ interpretation of an aspect of nature through electronic music. “Wave Lapse” layers live audio from museum patron members and video to comment on the layered complexities of Mattes and Dougherty’s work.

Similarly, “Fire Festival” will  include video representations of the natural world, including fire, and pair them with live electric guitar and pre-recorded sounds.

Ricks says the complementary juxtaposition of the electronic music pieces and Mattes and Dougherty’s exhibits was not coincidental. The artists’ approaches to their respective pieces is similar to how electronic music is created.

“I’m taking natural sounds and changing them into something else, something unexpected,” said Ricks. “Mattes and Dougherty also took something natural and put it into an artificial space. This inspires people to think about nature and creativity in a new way.”

Ricks and Asplund’s piece weaves together Asplund’s viola with Ricks’ use of a MIDI controller pad, which allows him to trigger and control sounds, including their speed, pitch and volume.

“It’s like an orchestra in a box, where the orchestra can play any sound you could imagine” said Ricks.

The finished product “Woven” features interlocking lines and patterns to create rich textures that reflect the surfaces in Mattes and Dougherty’s work.

For more information about the concert, visit the MOA’s Facebook page.

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