On View: August 2-August 3
The Kitchen at Westbeth (163B Bank Street, 4th Floor Loft)
7 pm, Free with RSVP
Emerging from The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency primary researcher fields harrington’s archival research on Butch Morris’s improvisational strategy Conduction®, this event brings together musician Melvin Gibbs, music critic Howard Mandel, and professor Katherine McKittrick with harrington to discuss possible connections between Morris’s groundbreaking method and McKittrick's theoretical approaches to reinvention and rebellion as outlined in her 2020 book Dear Science and Other Stories. The evening will culminate with a performance by HxH, the improvisatory electro-acoustic duo of Lester St. Louis and Chris Williams, who will respond to harrington’s investigation of Conduction® as a form of guided improvisation.
This program is part of The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency x Simons Foundation x School for Poetic Computation.
Melvin Gibbs (he/him) is a composer, musician, artist, and writer born, raised, and currently based in Brooklyn. He has been a member of bands including the no-wave outfit Defunkt, the avant-jazz group Power Tools, the alt-rock Rollins Band, the funk group Socialybrium, the Zig Zag Power Trio, and avant-garde rock supergroup Body Meπa. He has also worked with artists including Femi Kuti, Caetano Veloso, deadprez, Eddie Palmieri, David Byrne, Arto Lindsay, and Sonny Sharrock. Gibbs has composed music for films, installations, and performances, working with artists including Matthew Barney, Stan Douglas, and Arthur Jafa. His own projects include Elevated Entity, which blends Yoruba religious music, hip-hop, and jazz; God Particle, a collaboration with theoretical cosmologist and The Jazz Of Physics author Stephon Alexander; and Melvin Gibbs Magnum, a 21st-century jazz band that includes Kassa Overall and DJ Logic. For twenty-plus years he has been a member of the band Harriet Tubman. In 2021 Northern Spy Records released his EP 4 + 1 equals 5 for May 25. In 2022, Editions Mego released Anamibia Sessions Vol. 1: The Wave, an album of electronic soundscapes made for and inspired by Arthur Jafa. Gibbs is also gaining renown as a writer. He has written articles for Jazz Times, Wire Magazine, and Oxford American, and his work appears in Everything But The Burden, edited by Greg Tate. He is currently writing The Science Of Black Music (working title), to be published by Basic Books.
fields harrington (he/him) is an artist who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. He works across disciplines and media to investigate the social and political dimensions of race, value, and the complex history of science. harrington studied at San Antonio Community College and received his BFA from the University of North Texas and his MFA from the University of Pennsylvania. He was a participant in the Whitney Independent Study Program (2019–2020). He has presented solo exhibitions at David Salkin Gallery (2020) and Y2K Group (2021). He has also exhibited in group shows at Parsons School of Design, Recycled Artist In Residence, 52-07 Flushing Avenue, and Automat Gallery. He participated in the research residency Site to be Seen at RAIR (2021), and teaches at Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts at The New School, Parsons School of Design, and The Cooper Union.
HxH is the improvisatory electro-acoustic duo of Lester St. Louis (he/him) and Chris Williams (he/him). The duo utilizes a mix of trumpet, cello and electronics to build worlds traversing through acoustic sound, grainy textures, expansive pools of sounds, breaks, cuts and beats. The approach is conceived as an expansiveness that holds a personal intimacy. HxH wants to bring the listeners in, tune them to the experience and take a long trip. HxH functions as a vehicle to bring together the mass of references and influences Williams and St. Louis share and create ways to crystalize those ideas in real, expanded time to an experience over minutes or hours.
Howard Mandel (he/him) is an author, editor, website director, events and broadcast producer, NPR arts reporter, educator, and president of the Jazz Journalists Association. Now based in Chicago, Mandel lived in downtown Manhattan and Brooklyn from 1981 to 2014, writing for The Village Voice, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Musical America, Downbeat, and others while also teaching at New York University and the New School. Mandel is the author of Future Jazz (Oxford University Press, 1999) and Miles Ornette Cecil – Jazz Beyond Jazz (Routledge, 2008) and was consulting editor of The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Jazz and Blues (Flame Tree, 2005 and subsequent editions). He blogs at ArtsJournal.com and has launched a Substack, "Mandel’s Media Diet." Mandel wrote the preface to Lawrence D. “Butch” Morris’s The Art of Conduction, A Conduction® Workbook, edited by Danela Veronesi, and liner notes for the 2010 CD reissue of Conduction No. 1: Current Trends in Racism in Modern America (A Work in Progress), which he attended when it was performed at The Kitchen on February 1, 1985.
Katherine McKittrick (she/her) is Canada Research Chair in Black Studies at Queen's University. She teaches and researches in the areas of black studies, anti-colonial studies, and critical-creative methodologies. She authored Demonic Grounds: Black Women and the Cartographies of Struggle, edited Sylvia Wynter: On Being Human as Praxis, and co-edited, with Clyde Woods, Black Geographies and the Politics of Place. Her most recent monograph, Dear Science and Other Stories is an exploration of black methodologies.
FUNDING SUPPORT & CREDITS
The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency is generously supported by the Simons Foundation, whose mission is to advance the frontiers of research in mathematics and the basic sciences. The Foundation’s Science, Society and Culture division seeks to provide opportunities for people to forge a connection to science—whether for the first time or a lifetime. Through their initiatives, they work to inspire a feeling of awe and wonder, foster connections between people and science, and support environments that provide a sense of belonging.
The Kitchen’s programs are made possible through generous support from annual grants from Bloomberg Philanthropies, Helen Frankenthaler Foundation, Howard Gilman Foundation, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Mertz Gilmore Foundation, Simons Foundation, Ruth Foundation for the Arts, and Teiger Foundation; and in part by public funds from New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council and New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature.