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Lawrence English

March 31 — April 9, 2017

Fulcrum Arts welcomes Australian artist and composer Lawrence English for a special AxS Incubator residency and workshop.

Lawrence English is composer, artist and curator based in Australia. Working across an array of aesthetic investigations, English’s work explores the politics of perception and prompts questions of field, perception and memory. English utilises a variety of approaches including visceral live performance and installation to create works that ask participants to consider their relationship to place and embodiment.

Over the past decade, English’s sonic investigations have traversed a divergent path within which musical languages and environmental sources are granted equal value. His work calls into question the established relationships of sound, harmony, distortion and structure and is sculpted, colliding overwhelmingly intricacy with roaring waves of low vibration. The music is evocative and invites the listener to explore their own narratives and impressions shaped by their subjective histories and experiences. His recent albums Cruel Optimism and Wilderness Of Mirrors revel in ‘extreme dynamics and densities’ and resolve into an ‘overriding aesthetic of harmonic distortion’. He is one half of HEXA with Jamie Stewart, who recently collaborated with David Lynch on the Factory Photographs project and enjoys ongoing collaborations with John Chantler (as Holy Family), Liz Harris (as Slow Walkers), Stephen VitielloWerner Dafeldecker and others.


This April, English will come to Pasadena to research and document, through a series of photographs and field recordings, sites around the greater Los Angeles area where the remnants of WWII air raid sirens can still be found. This new body of work is an extension of English’s recent research into the relationship between sound, music, warfare, and terror.

His most recent release, Cruel Optimism, is a consideration of power, both present and absent. It meditates on how power consumes, augments and ultimately shapes two subsequent human conditions: obsession and fragility. English states, “I’m focused on creating work that opens dialogue towards saying we don’t necessarily have to instantly look for answers or engage in preconceived notions of what we should be doing. We need to ask better questions of ourselves, of each other, of the technology we have at hand and how it is we use them in the day to day. The music is a positive affirmation of self, of people engaging and striving as objects of projection into the world.”

Additional in-kind support provided by the University of Nevada Las Vegas.