Note: A limited 7" lathe cut is available as part of a bundle purchase release by Wendy's Subway for Martha's work: www.wendyssubway.com/publishing/titles/a-stone-widens-it
Earlier this summer, artist Martha Tuttle and poet Gabe Kruis invited me to perform at Martha's installation at Storm King Art Center in New Windsor, NY. Storm King has been close to my heart since I first moved to New York and I was thrilled at the opportunity.
Martha’s work, “A stone that thinks of Enceladus” is an 8-acre installation made of 200 hand-crafted glass and marble stones on top of and around large boulders from Storm King’s site. The work addresses the historical practice of mapping, as well as the search for emotional and physical meaning within a landscape.
Due to health restrictions, a live performance was not possible. Instead, we considered other ways for me to engage with the space, with the leading question in mind: how can one embody a space without being in it?
When I went up to the site in July, I felt an immediate connection and clarity with what I wanted to do. The installation site is situated in a highly complex sound environment in a valley framed by the I-87 NY Thruway, the distant Schunemunk Mountain, and the tree-lined Bunny Road. There is a noticeable presence of bird and bug activity, including a swarm of giant ground hornets which readily attack bees in close proximity. I was struck by the ways that Martha's work felt both of the space and distinct from it, and how her writing on the accompanying sign (of which I sample in the title track) set a pointed tone for the work. I wanted to capture the complexities of the sonic, tactile, and emotional sensibilities present in Martha's installation, and decided to create a set of short pieces, which I’m fondly calling miniatures. Together with Storm King, we decided that the album can be played as part of the Audio Guide on site, as well as on the exhibition website for those without access to the space.
All field recording material, including some vocal samples, were taken on site. Each track includes an image that I took of the work and surrounding environment. This project has been a guiding force for creativity during an intensely reflective summer and I am grateful to Martha, Gabe, and Storm King for the opportunity to share it with you 🪐✨
released September 4, 2020
Charmaine Lee, voice, electronics, field recordings, composition, images
Track 7 words by Martha Tuttle
Special thanks to:
Martha Tuttle, www.marthatuttle.com
Gabe Kruis, www.2009-2019.poetryproject.org/people/gabriel-kruis/
Storm King Art Center, www.stormking.org
Chris Goudreau, chrisgoudreau.bandcamp.com