Announcing Culminating Presentations From 2023 L.A.B. Research Residency Partnership with The Simons Foundation and The School For Poetic Computation, August–September 2023

The Kitchen today announces the public programming stemming from its 2022–2023 L.A.B. Research Residency, for which the institution, with the support of the Simons Foundation, has partnered with the collective School for Poetic Computation (SFPC) to explore the histories of art, science, and technology represented in The Kitchen’s archive. Results of the collaboration will be shared in August and September at physical locations including The Kitchen’s home-away-from-home at Westbeth, as well as online via Montez Press Radio and The Kitchen’s newly revamped website.

The Kitchen and SFPC’s collective investigation began in fall 2022 with the formation of four research groups, each comprising a primary researcher and their advisors. They are: Lillian-Yvonne Bertram (primary researcher), with advisors Melanie Hoff, Erik Loyer, and Eileen Isagon Skyers; fields harrington (primary researcher), with advisors Zainab Aliyu, mayfield brooks, and Sebastián Morales Prado; Romi Ron Morrison (primary researcher), with advisors Neta Bomani, Ryan C. Clarke, and Mendi Obadike; and Asha Tamirisa (primary researcher), with advisors Galen Macdonald, Chakeiya Richmond, and Tiri Kananuruk. Three additional artists—American Artist, Taylor Levy, and __Che-Wei Wang__—are participating in the L.A.B Research Residency as general advisors, offering feedback to all four research groups.

Throughout the residency, the research groups have pursued inquiries related to the thematic "Instruments of the Black Gooey Universe"—a concept that proposes that "instruments" drawn from critical theory, electronics, and networked performance practice can be deployed to probe and counter the opaque world of computing and the racial biases embedded within computational systems.

“Instruments of the Black Gooey Universe” is inspired by extracurricular connections between two recurring SFPC courses: Dark Matters, a critical theory class, taught by American Artist, that investigates the surveillance of Blackness and the construction of whiteness as “neutral” within high technology; and Hardware, a hands-on electronics class taught by the collective CW&T (Che-Wei Wang and Taylor Levy). American Artist developed the concept “Black Gooey Universe” to describe a dimension of computer technology that posits Blackness as neutral, or as the backdrop of virtual creation. Within the Black Gooey Universe, Blackness is referenced both formally, as a color; and socially, as a site of experimentation, expression, and production by Black people. Since Fall 2022, members of the research groups have been engaging with The Kitchen's archive of performance recordings, program ephemera, posters, oral histories, and more to glean precedents for how artists and programs throughout the institution's history have confronted the Black Gooey Universe.

The culminating presentations in August and September unfold across multiple locations and mediums. They include four conversations between primary researchers, advisors, and invited guests—each taking the form of a broadcast on Montez Press Radio, an experimental broadcasting and performance platform that is also engaged in a 12-month residency with The Kitchen. These discussions will address topics including influence and the avant garde, approaches to sonic improvisation, the boundaries between reproduction and repetition, and more. Select segments will be recorded with live audiences at Montez Press Radio’s Canal Street headquarters. All will be archived for future listening on The Kitchen's website. Additional outputs from the residency include two in-person, hybrid discussion–performance events; a new online and print publication; prototypes for technologies related to archival research; and a web project. Full information on all programs, including dates and times of in-person offerings, is below.

The Kitchen L.A.B. Residency x Simons Foundation, in partnership with School for Poetic Computation Co-Directors Zainab Aliyu, Todd Anderson, American Artist, Neta Bomani, Melanie Hoff, Galen Macdonald, and Celine Wong Katzman, is organized by Legacy Russell, Executive Director & Chief Curator, and Alison Burstein, Curator, with Angelique Rosales Salgado, Curatorial Assistant, and Daniella Brito, The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency x Simons Foundation Fellow.


Instruments of the Black Gooey Universe On Air, Hosted by Montez Press Radio

Note: Select events in The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency x Simons Foundation x SFPC On Air series will be available to attend in-person, in addition to their airing as episodes on Montez Press Radio. All will be archived and available to listen to, on-demand, at after they broadcast.

Lillian-Yvonne Bertram and Jessica Hagedorn In Conversation Live Broadcast from Montez Press Radio (46 Canal Street, New York, NY 10014) September 25, 7pm EST
Free with RSVP (reservations will open in September)

The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency primary researcher Lillian-Yvonne Bertram joins artist Jessica Hagedorn for a conversation about how artists use—or talk about using—technology in performance. Centering on the interdisciplinary trio Thought Music’s (Robbie McCauley, Laurie Carlos, and Hagedorn) performance Class at The Kitchen in 2000—detailed in The Kitchen's press release at the time as a piece in which the characters "use video and computers to exchange dialogue, gossips and poetry"—Bertram and Hagedorn discuss the extent to which such descriptions align with the nature of the performance and the reasons discrepancies might exist between language and reality.

American Artist, Zainab Aliyu, Che-Wei Wang, and Taylor Levy Explore The Black Gooey Universe
Airing on Montez Press Radio September 26 at 7pm EST

As the collective in residence for the 2022–2023 Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency, The School For Poetic Computation has been investigating the technological, social, and archival import of “the Black Gooey Universe,” a concept that American Artist developed to describe a dimension of computer technology that posits Blackness as neutral, or as the backdrop of virtual creation. The expanded theme created by SFPC for the residency, “Instruments of the Black Gooey Universe,” explores this idea through physical computing, musicology, and notation. In this discussion, SFPC Co-Directors and The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency advisors American Artist and Zainab Aliyu and SFPC educators and The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency advisors Che-Wei Wang and Taylor Levy invite listeners to learn more about the questions that inspired the residency’s thematic

Roundtable Discussion and Performance: Romi Ron Morrison In Conversation with Kumi James, Mendi + Keith Obadike, Oxana Chi & Layla Zami
In-person Event at Collapsable Hole (155 Bank St, New York, NY 10014). September 27, 7pm EST
Free with RSVP (reservations will open in September)
Airing on Montez Press Radio September 28, 6pm EST

The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency primary researcher Romi Ron Morrison hosts a roundtable discussion with artist Kumi James and the collaborative duos of Mendi + Keith Obadike and Layla Zami and Oxana Chi that will explore Morrison’s research on the graphic scores and personal life of Julius Eastman. To culminate their residency with The Kitchen, Morrison will create a graphic score inspired by their research on Eastman’s use of graphic notation: the artist has commissioned this group of invited artists to develop a composition in response to their forthcoming score. On September 27 at the Collapsable Hole, Morrison will host an in-person conversation about the project with the contributing artists, followed by a collaborative, movement-based performance by Chi with live-music by Zami. A recording of the program will air on Montez Press Radio the following day, September 28, at 7pm EST.

Roundtable Discussion with Sharmi Basu, Budhaditya Chattopadhyay, Amirtha Kidambi, and Rajna Swaminathan, and Asha Tamirisa
Airing on Montez Press Radio September 27, 7pm EST

The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency primary researcher Asha Tamirisa presents a roundtable conversation that expands understandings of the influence of the Global South on sonic arts presented at The Kitchen in its first decade. Facilitated by Tamirisa, the discussion will feature artist-researchers Sharmi Basu, Budhaditya Chattopadhyay, Amirtha Kidambi, and Rajna Swaminathan.

Additional Programs

The Extra Dimension of Reinvention
August 2, 7pm EST
In-Person at The Kitchen at Westbeth (163B Bank Street, 4th Floor Loft)
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 professor Katherine McKittrick, musician Melvin Gibbs, and music critic Howard Mandel 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.

Asha Tamirisa: Counter-Archiving the Avant-Garde
Web Project Launching in September 2023

“...the ‘counter-archive’ represents an incomplete and unstable repository, an entity to be contested and expanded through clandestine acts, a space of impermanence and play. Taken as an action, the term entails mischief and imagination, challenging the record of official history. Employed as an artistic strategy it pushes our archival impulse into new territories, encouraging critique and material alteration/fabrication…To counter-archive is to counter-act, to rewrite, to animate over.” —Brett Kashmere, Cache Rules Everything Around Me, Introduction to Incite Issue #2: Counter Archive

In tandem with a roundtable conversation airing on Montez Press Radio on September 27 at 7pm EST, The Kitchen L.A.B. Research Residency primary researcher Asha Tamirisa presents a web-based platform informed by notions of the counter-archive. The web-platform invites visitor participation and encourages polyvocality and dynamism, such that work in this version of the archive is never stable defined by a single authority. The web-platform offers one possible example for how an archive can be relational, critical, political, and communal, with the ultimate goal of producing evidence of the complex relationship between the Global South and American experimental sonic arts and aesthetics.

Lillian-Yvonne Bertram: Archival Gestures
Technology Prototypes Launching in September 2023

Throughout the 2022–2023 L.A.B. Research Residency, primary researcher Lillian-Yvonne Bertram has been developing two new prototypes of technologies that uncover the labor embedded in archival research and offer alternative approaches to interpreting archival ephemera. One of these prototypes will arrange selected material from The Kitchen’s audio-visual archives by gesture: Bertram has commissioned the design of a custom web app that detects when a user has matched a given pose. The app will then play the corresponding video from The Kitchen’s archive associated with each pose. The second technology intervenes on The Kitchen’s archive of promotional material with speculative language. The artist has commissioned research into the development or sourcing of a code that will fine-tune a neural network to generate press releases for imagined performances, based on their study of existing press releases within the archives. Together, these technologies underscore the fickle, ever-changing, and sometimes unreliable relationship between archival documentation and lived experience. Documentation of early tests of these prototypes will be shared publicly in September 2023.

Romi Ron Morrison: Songbook
Publication Launching September 2023
Online and In Print

In September, Romi Ron Morrison will launch a multimedia “songbook” inspired by their research on the graphic scores, personal life, and musical patterns of the late composer Julius Eastman. The songbook will incorporate new graphic scores produced by Morrison alongside critical texts and a selection of photographs emerging from the artist’s research.

The title Songbook gestures toward Eastman’s infamous dispute with the minimalist composer John Cage. Eastman performed an iteration of Cage’s canonical work Song Books with the S.E.M. Ensemble at The University of Buffalo in 1975—a performance that was deemed inflammatory for its use of nudity and its emphasis on queer desire. The performance and its reception marked a pivotal turning point in the artist’s career: from then on, Eastman’s identity as a Black gay man became a critical focus in his work, expressed in forthcoming compositions like Evil N, Crazy N, and Gay Guerrilla (all 1979). Ultimately, the dispute and Eastman’s unapologetic assertion of his identity contributed to his ostracization from much of the white academic music world.

In their songbook, Morrison reckons with Eastman’s displacement and sets out to map the social landscapes and physical geographies that the late artist frequented in New York. This mapping holds Eastman's patterns of desire in tension with computational models deployed by New York City’s Urban Planning Department. This work asks, “How might Eastman’s errant patterns modulate computing in excess of enumeration?" Morrison’s Songbook will take the form of a printed publication and will also be published digitally, alongside Morrison's essay for The Kitchen’s online publication, On Mind (

Funding Support and 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.

About the Artists

American Artist makes thought experiments that mine the history of technology, race, and knowledge production, beginning with their legal name change in 2013. Their artwork primarily takes the form of sculpture, software, and video. Artist is a recipient of the Herb Alpert Award in Visual Art and a Creative Capital grantee. They are a former resident of Smack Mellon, Red Bull Arts Detroit, Abrons Art Center, Recess, EYEBEAM, Pioneer Works, and the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program. They have exhibited at the Whitney Museum of American Art; the Museum of Modern Art; Studio Museum in Harlem; Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago; Kunsthalle Basel, Switzerland; and Nam June Paik Center, Seoul. Their work has been featured in New York Times, Cultured, Artforum, and Art in America. Artist is a co-director of the School for Poetic Computation and a core faculty at Yale.

Zainab Aliyu (f.k.a. zai) like "radioactive decay" is an artist and cultural worker living in occupied lenapehoking. Aliyu’s work is about the material affect of the "immaterial." Aliyu contextualizes the cybernetic and temporal entanglement embedded within societal dynamics to understand how all sociotechnological systems of control are interconnected, and how we are all implicated through time. Aliyu draws upon their body as a corporeal archive and site of ancestral memory to craft counter-narratives through built virtual environments, printed matter, video, archives, installation and community-participatory (un)learning.

Sharmi Basu (they/them) is a multimedia performance artist, curator, composer, and arts organizer born and based in the unceded territories of Chochenyo Ohlone peoples, also known as Oakland, CA. They create sound and performance pieces that address vulnerability, accountability, and experiences of diaspora by creating new narratives for decolonial thinking toward individual and collective liberation. Their primary performance project, Beast Nest, shows us that the abstract and immaterial experiences of trauma can be transformed through the process of creation in art and sound. They believe that transcending the emotional landscape through active presence is the key to accessing multidimensionality and work with these ideas in their Sound and Liberation workshops, their curatorial projects, and their BIPOC improvisation group, the Mara Performance Collective. They received their MFA from Mills College and have hosted a number of workshops internationally that center on sound healing, decolonization, and conflict & accountability, as well as technical skill-shares. They have performed for SFMOMA, YBCA, San Francisco Electronic Music Festival, Cluster Festival, Ableton Loop, the International Symposium of Improvised Music, Soundwave SF, Human Resources LA, and many other spaces throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe. They have exhibited work at Coaxial, Southern Exposure, SOMArts, Counterpulse, Gray Area, and the Smithsonian.

Lillian-Yvonne Bertram (they/them) is the author of the forthcoming poetry collection Negative Money (Soft Skull, 2023) and the poetry collection Travesty Generator (Noemi Press, 2019), winner of the 2018 Noemi Press Poetry Prize and finalist for the National Poetry Series. Travesty Generator received the 2020 Poetry Society of America Anna Rabinowitz Prize for interdisciplinary and venturesome work. Bertram is also the author of Personal Science (Tupelo Press, 2017); a slice from the cake made of air (Red Hen Press 2016); and But a Storm is Blowing From Paradise (Red Hen Press, 2012), chosen by Claudia Rankine as the winner of the 2010 Benjamin Saltman Award. Bertram’s other publications include the chapbook cutthroat glamours (Phantom Books, 2012), the artist book Grand Dessein (commissioned by Container Press), and Tierra Fisurada, a Spanish poetry chapbook published in Argentina (Editoriales del Duende, 2002). They collaborated with the artist Laylah Ali for the exhibition booklet of her 2017 art show The Acephalous Series. Bertram’s honors include a 2017 Harvard University Woodberry Poetry Room Creative Grant; a 2014 National Endowment for the Arts Poetry Fellowship; finalist nomination for the 2013 Hurston/Wright Legacy Award; a Vermont Studio Center Fellowship; and fellowships to the Bread Loaf Writers Conference, Cave Canem, and others. Bertram holds a Ph.D. in Literature & Creative Writing from the the University of Utah, along with degrees from Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Budhaditya Chattopadhyay (he/him) is a contemporary artist, researcher, and writer. Chattopadhyay produces works for large-scale installations and live performance addressing contemporary issues of environment and ecology, migration, race, and decoloniality. His works have been widely exhibited, performed, or presented across the globe. Chattopadhyay has an expansive body of scholarly publications in artistic research, media theory and aesthetics in leading peer-reviewed journals. He is the author of four books: The Nomadic Listener (2020), The Auditory Setting (2021), Between the Headphones (2021), and Sound Practices in the Global South (2022). Chattopadhyay holds a PhD in Artistic Research and Sound Studies from the Academy of Creative and Performing Arts, Leiden University, and is currently a Visiting Professor at the Critical Media Lab, Basel, Switzerland.

Oxana Chi is a Nigerian-German dancer, choreographer, curator, writer, filmmaker, educator, and trendsetter. Her work explores how our present is built upon in/visible remnants from the past, and its porous relation to our futures. Her rich multidisciplinary repertoire includes commissioned works for Humboldt-University (Berlin) and for the Leo-Baeck-Institute (NYC/Berlin). International tour history includes Jack Crystal Theater at NYU, Volksbühne Berlin, HAU, Societätstheater Dresden, Delhi International Queer Theatre & Film Festival, SIPA Festival Surakarta, University of Ghana, Goldsmith University, among many others. Honors, residencies and awards include: PSi 2023 Bursary, Abrons Arts Center AIRspace Grant 2017-2018, Ambassador of Peace DOSHIMA 2016, and being listed in The Dance Enthusiast’s A to Z of People Who Power the Dance World (NYC 2018). Her choreography and film works are discussed in several publications and university syllabi. She was a Curator for the International Human Rights Art Festival and a guest faculty in the Dance Department at NYU.

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 and Chris Williams. 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 Chris and Lester share and create ways to crystalize those ideas in real, expanded time to an experience over minutes or hours.

Kumi James, aka BAE BAE, is a DJ/producer, sound artist, and filmmaker born and raised in Los Angeles. Her sound design practice explores the permeability of identity, the liberatory potential of Black culture(s), and possibilities for personal and collective healing. James’ uncanny sonic assemblages and dj mixes provoke muddy flows of knowing through the body, senses, and memory. She curates LA's beloved underground party, Hood Rave, and hosts a monthly radio show on NTS Radio called Hypersensitivity.

Amirtha Kidambi (she/her) is a musician, educator, activist, and organizer dedicated to the creation and performance of subversive music from free improvisation, avant-jazz, Indian music, experimental bands, and new music. Rooted in anti-racism, decolonization, and anti-capitalism, Kidambi is co-founder of South Asian Artists in Diaspora (SAAID) and, with Matana Roberts, co-organizer of Musicians Against Police Brutality. As the bandleader of the incendiary protest group Elder Ones, Kidambi has earned accolades from publications such as The New York Times, Pitchfork, and Wire Magazine. She has been recognized by Downbeat as a Rising Star in the female Vocalist, Composer, and Best Group categories. Kidambi's collaborations include projects with Mary Halvorson's sextet Code Girl, saxophonist Darius Jones in the duo Angels & Demons, bassist Luke Stewart in a duo setting, percussionist Matt Evans in Neti-Neti, and acclaimed composers Muhal Richard Abrams and Robert Ashley. Kidambi has performed at festivals and venues including Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, Whitney Museum, MoMA PS1, Big Ears Festival and the Berliner Festspiele. She has been deeply engaged with teaching and decolonizing curriculum at Brooklyn College and the New School and will be a visiting professor at Bennington College in Fall 2024.

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 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 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.

Mendi + Keith Obadike make music, art and literature. Their early works include The Sour Thunder, an Internet opera (Bridge Records), Crosstalk: American Speech Music (Bridge Records), Black.Net.Art Actions, a suite of new media (internet art) works (published in re:skin on M.I.T Press), Big House / Disclosure, a 200-hour public sound installation (Northwestern University), Phonotype, a book & CD of media artworks, and a poetry collection, Armor and Flesh (Lotus Press). They have contributed sounds/music to projects by wide range of artists including loops for neo-soul singer D'Angelo's first album and a score for playwright Anna Deavere Smith at the Lincoln Center Institute. They were invited to develop their first "opera-masquerade" by writer Toni Morrison at her Princeton Atelier. Their recent projects include a series of large-scale sound art works: American Cypher at Bucknell University and The Studio Museum in Harlem, Blues Speaker (for James Baldwin) at The New School in New York, Free/Phase at the Chicago Cultural Center, Sonic Migration at Scribe Video Center and Tindley Temple in Philadelphia, and Fit (the Battle Of Jericho) at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Their other honors include a Rockefeller New Media Arts Fellowship, Pick Laudati Award for Digital Art, a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Fiction, and the Louis Comfort Tiffany Biennial Award. Their intermedia work has been commissioned by The NY African Film Festival and Electronic Arts Intermix, The Yale Cabaret, Whitechapel Art Gallery (London), and The Whitney Museum of Art, among other institutions. Their music has been featured on New York and Chicago public radio, as well as on Juniradio (104.5) in Berlin. They are currently exhibiting in the group show I Was Raised On The Internet at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and developing new work as artists in residence at the Weeksville Heritage Society in Brooklyn, NY.

Keith received a BA in Art from North Carolina Central University and an MFA in Sound Design from Yale University. He is a professor in the Department of Art at Cornell University. Mendi received a BA in English from Spelman College and a Ph.D. in Literature from Duke University. After working as a Cotsen Postdoctoral Fellow at Princeton University, she became a poetry editor at Fence Magazine and is currently an associate professor in the Department of Humanities and Media Studies at Pratt Institute. Mendi and Keith also serve on the boards of Rhizome and The Vera List Center for Art and Politics.

Rajna Swaminathan (she/her) is an acclaimed mrudangam artist, composer, and scholar whose work explores the undercurrents of rhythmic experience and emergent textures in collective improvisation. She is one of only a few women who play the mrudangam professionally. Through extensive experience performing in the Karnatik music and bharatanatyam scenes, an affinity for various streams of South Asian film/popular music, and deep collaborative work in New York's jazz and creative music scene, she developed experimental approaches to improvising on the mrudangam, piano, and voice. Swaminathan’s ensemble RAJAS has been a prominent medium for her expansive compositions, which involve a lattice of rhythmic, textural, and modal approaches. The ensemble's debut album, Of Agency and Abstraction (Biophilia Records, 2019), received considerable critical acclaim. Their newest record, Apertures, was released by Ropeadope this year. Swaminathan was recently appointed Assistant Professor of Music (Integrated Composition, Improvisation, and Technology) at UC Irvine's Claire Trevor School of the Arts. She has composed for JACK Quartet, Del Sol Quartet, violinists Jennifer Koh, and Lucia Lin; been commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic, National Sawdust, and Chamber Music America New Jazz Works; and has been awarded a fellowship from the Gabriela Lena Frank Creative Academy of Music. She performs in ensembles led by Ganavya Doraiswamy, Amir ElSaffar, Vijay Iyer, and Aakash Mittal, and has collaborated with playwright Anu Yadav, visual artist Zahyr Lauren, the Ragamala Dance Company, dancer/choreographer Mythili Prakash, and poets Mahogany L. Browne, Sarah Kay, and Jon Sands.

Romi Ron Morrison (they/them) is an interdisciplinary artist, researcher, and educator. Their work investigates the personal, political, ideological, and spatial boundaries of race, ethics, and social infrastructure within digital technologies. Using maps, data, sound, performance, and video, their installations center Black diasporic technologies that challenge the demands of an increasingly quantified world—reducing land into property, people into digits, and knowledge into data. Morrison has exhibited work and given talks at numerous exhibitions, conferences, and workshops around the world including Transmediale (Berlin), ALT_CPH Biennial (Copenhagen), the American Institute of Architects (New York), Museum of Contemporary Art (Chicago), Haus der Kulturen der Welt (Berlin), Queens Museum (New York), and the Walker Museum of Art. They have been in residence at Eyebeam Center for Art + Technology, New York University (ITP), The Joan Mitchell Foundation, and FemTechNet. Their writing has appeared in publications by MIT Press, University of California Press, Catalyst: Feminism, Theory, Technoscience, and Logic Magazine. They have taught at Parsons School of Design and the University of Southern California (USC) and are currently an Annenberg PhD Fellow in the School of Cinematic Arts at USC in Los Angeles.

Asha Tamirisa (she/her) is an artist and researcher, primarily working with sound and video in performance and installation. Her work often explores matereality and metaphor, history and archives, and gender and technology. Tamirisa holds a Ph.D. in Computer Music and Multimedia and an M.A. in Modern Culture and Media from Brown University, and has taught at Street Level Youth Media, Brown University, RISD, and Bates College.

CW&T started as and remains the two-person design practice of Che-Wei Wang and Taylor Levy. With backgrounds in Architecture, Film and Computer Science, the duo met at NYU ITP where they began their scale and medium agnostic approach to design. Wang and Levy lecture extensively on design and technology as a creative medium. They teach courses on time, electronics, hardware, programming, inflatables and morphology at Pratt Institute, New York University and the School for Poetic Computation. Their pedagogy extends into the home/studio where they host office hours to lend a hand, or offer insight to anyone interested in figuring out how to make something themselves. CW&T is the recipient of the 2022 National Design Award for Product Design from Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum. CW&T live and work in their Brooklyn-based studio and prototyping shop along with their two young children, Pau and Tree.

Dr. Layla Zami is an interdisciplinary scholar and artist working with music, sounds, poetry, and theater. She is currently Postdoctoral Researcher in Performance Studies at Freie Universität Berlin and a Resident Artist with Oxana Chi Dance & Art. Born in Paris in 1985, she is proudly rooted in a Jewish-European and Afro-Caribbean-Indian heritage, and blossoms on tour with her wife. The duo has gratefully and gracefully performed in universities, theaters, and festivals in Europe, Africa, Asia and North America. The author of Contemporary PerforMemory (2020), she holds a PhD in Gender Studies (Humboldt-University) and a Diploma in Classical Saxophone (Conservatoire du Mans). During her NYC years, Zami was Adj. Associate Professor of Humanities and Media Studies and Co-Chair of Black Lives Matter at Pratt Institute in NYC, and a LABA Fellow at the 14th Street Y Theater.

About the School for Poetic Computation

The School for Poetic Computation is an experimental school in New York that was founded in 2013. Our school supports interdisciplinary study in art, code, hardware and critical theory. It is a place for unlearning and learning. Our programs challenge the capitalistic, heteronormative and patriarchal canon of social and computer sciences. SFPC attracts self-motivated creative thinkers and radical teachers. All participants are treated as collaborators and we formally encourage the power of learners to determine their experience & education. The unique culture of our institution is one based on communal care and solidarity across social differences. This pedagogical space framed in intimacy ideally allows for participants that are LGBTQIA+, Black, Indigenous, and/or Disabled to feel empowered that their ideas are important, necessary and central.

About The Kitchen

Founded in 1971 as an artist-driven collective, The Kitchen today reaffirms and expands upon its originating vision as a dynamic cultural institution that centers artists, prioritizes people, and puts process first. Programming in a kunsthalle model that brings together live performances, exhibition-making, and public programming under one roof, The Kitchen empowers its audiences and communities to think creatively and radically about what it means to shape a multivalent and sustainable future in art. The Kitchen seeks to cultivate and hold space for wild thought, risky play, and innovative and experimental making, encouraging artists and cultural workers alike to defy boundaries and sending them into the world to remake art history and catalyze creative change.

Among the artists who have presented significant work at The Kitchen are Muhal Richard Abrams, Laurie Anderson, ANOHNI, Robert Ashley, Charles Atlas, Kevin Beasley, Beastie Boys, Gretchen Bender, Dara Birnbaum, Anthony Braxton, John Cage, Lucinda Childs, Julius Eastman, Philip Glass, Leslie Hewitt, Darius James, Joan Jonas, Bill T. Jones, Devin Kenny, Simone Leigh, Ralph Lemon, George Lewis, Robert Longo, Robert Mapplethorpe, Sarah Michelson, Tere O’Connor, Okwui Okpokwasili, Nam June Paik, Charlemagne Palestine, Sondra Perry, Vernon Reid, Arthur Russell, Cindy Sherman, Laurie Spiegel, Talking Heads, Greg Tate, Cecil Taylor, Urban Bush Women, Danh Vō, Lawrence Weiner, Anicka Yi, and many more.

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Press Contact: Blake Zidell at Blake Zidell & Associates: or 917.572.2493.