Announcing Soundwave ((7)) Architecture

23 May 2016, by Autumn Hays in News

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MEDIATE’s Soundwave ((7)) Biennial Architecture pushes SF audience to reimagine their Cityscape

At a time when the landscape of San Francisco is shifting rapidly and economically, Architecture is a timely theme for the largest Bay Area sound-based art festival. Launching its seventh Biennial and featuring an eclectic program of performances, art exhibits, sound walks, and immersive environments by pioneering artists across the fields of music, visual art, sound art and design, this season promises to inspire audiences with interactive experiences from across the sonic spectrum. With over 30 performances and works and 50 participating artists, Soundwave ((7)) Architecture will take audiences on a citywide adventure by highlighting the multitude of architecturally iconic museums, cathedrals, and historic sites within San Francisco. Artists will activate these spaces, transforming them into sites for provocative and insightful experiences. Highlights include an exploration of Fort Mason with the the exhibition Aural Spatial Infinite that challenges audiences to consider the sculptural potential of sound in its Chapel and Firehouse, and guided soundwalk linking the two historic sites; Soundwave NightLife: Subliminal Cities at the majestic California Academy of Sciences that offers audiences immersive audio experiences and interactive sound installations; Two mesmerizing nights of dance, audiovisual, choral, and site-specific performances inhabiting the breathtaking Grace Cathedral; Activation of sites at the de Young Museum during their popular Friday Nights program; Mind-altering performance works in the Yud Gallery at the Contemporary Jewish Museum; Sonified meditations through gentrifying/defying neighborhoods in our popular AudioBus Tours; and expanding possibilities at Gray Area’s restored Grand Theater for groundbreaking and future-thinking performances. Daring artists will present projects that explore urban and spatial acoustics, biological architecture, personal and communal site histories, ambisonics, virtual architectonics, sonic materialities, the city as an instrument, and more. Soundwave runs for a full two months from July 1st to September 3rd, 2016. The full schedule, lineup and tickets will be available June 1st at





May 23, 2016 San Francisco – MEDIATE presents the seventh edition of its Soundwave Biennial, San Francisco’s Innovative Art and Music Festival. With over 50 participating artists and 30 commissioned public performances and site-specific works—Soundwave ((7)) Architecture will produce cutting-edge art and music events designed for audiences to discover sound as an experience, often in engagement with the artists, exhibits and performances.


Soundwave is the only program that brings daring creators from across the sonic spectrum, practicing in sound art, experimental, classical, voice, noise, and popular music, together with members from the visual and media arts, and science. The Biennial offers the audience both intimate and powerful sonic experiences all over San Francisco on stages, in historic theaters, chapels and cathedrals, museums, and national parks.


The 2016 Biennial season “Architecture” explores how we see and hear the built environment around us. By highlighting the numerous unique architectural designs existing in San Francisco, artists act as a conduit connecting audiences to their surroundings, encouraging them to look deeper into the layers of the built environment, and thereby promote conversation within it.


Artistic director Tiare Ribeaux describes Soundwave’s new season Architecture as “encompassing so much more than the design of buildings – it includes philosophies, psychogeographies, site histories, cultures and everything inbetween. This season seeks to include powerful works by diverse artists who aren’t afraid to delve into the deeper intricacies of our city at a time when new developments are constantly rising, communities are being displaced, and rent prices surge..This is a time of transformation, and we are all a part of it…”


Select artist projects explore:

  • Constructed Environments: Kadet Kuhne and Mary Franck present Liminal, a live collaborative audiovisual performance of unfolding spaces.
  • Cathedral Studies: Taser Island and Ensemble presents site-specific Cathedral Project with a choir and a live audiovisual performance.
  • Urban Site Histories: unique mobile AudioBus tour delving into personal histories with Sonic Portraits of a Shifting City in the Tenderloin with Kevin Corcoran and Jen Boyd.
  • Virtual Architectonics: David Stout presents the Janus Switch, a digital performance work merging live cinema and electronic music with generate virtual forms.
  • Imaginary Architectures: Hugh Livingston presents Place/Unplace a phone app guided outdoor soundwalk where participants can discover sonic surprises walking through through Fort Mason National Park.
  • City as an Instrument: Yagiz Mungan presents Urban Intermezzo an interactive virtual cityscape in which participants can “play” and trigger synthesizers generating a sonic landscape.
  • Economic Edifices: Nonagon and Colin Sebestyen explore the constant state of flux and shifting dichotomy of the San Francisco landscape with a live audiovisual collaboration in Start Up/Shut Down.
  • Sonic Materialities: Suzy Poling’s Time Monument explores the materialities of architectural elements by dismantling and restructuring of them on the body.
  • Dome Acoustics: – Jeff Cravath presents an interactive performance with tone chimes in Chromatic Conversations: Scoring the Environment in the James Turrell’s Three Gems Dome.  


Select highlights:

  • July 1: Opening Exhibition of Aural Spatial Infinite an opening celebration featuring a sitewide exploration at the Firehouse, Chapel and outdoor adventure in the national park all over Fort Mason Center with multidisciplinary artists showcasing large scale installations, sound sculptures, sound walks and more.
  • July 21st: NightLife party at California Academy of Sciences, featuring Christopher Willits for an immersive sound performance and virtual and augmented reality interactive sonic art exhibits.
  • July 29th and August 5th: Sounding Bodies: Embodied Architectures and Invisible Fortress at Grace Cathedral with site-specific sonic dance performances, choral ensembles and audiovisual explorations.
  • July 31st: AudioBus takes its first journey through the Tenderloin district in partnership with the Tenderloin Museum.
  • August 12th: Auricular Arrangements with site-wide activation through performances and a soundwalk at the de Young Museum.
  • September 1st: Material Notation experience site-specific performances reflecting on the acoustic Yud Gallery designed by Daniel Libeskind.
  • August 27th and September 3rd: 2 nights of mind-bending performances with invented softwares, generative landscapes, and movement through futuristic narrative audiovisual storytelling.


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Soundwave ((7)) Architecture is funded in part by the National Endowment for the Arts, San Francisco Arts Commission and the Zellerbach Family Foundation.





About Soundwave

Soundwave is MEDIATE’s acclaimed biennial festival of innovative sound, art and music. Soundwave is a multi-venue and multi-date sound performance and exhibition series happening over the entire summer every two years in San Francisco USA. Each season investigates a new idea in sound and invites diverse multidisciplinary artists and musicians to explore the season’s theme in new and innovative directions. Soundwave has completed five successful seasons that have taken over 15,000 people on sonic adventures on moving buses as well as in WWII bunkers, historic churches, museums, galleries, city streets and parks. Created by MEDIATE founder and artistic director Alan So, Soundwave explores the boundaries of how we see sound, language and music. It is a project dedicated to challenge and inspire artists and audiences to look deeper into the sound medium and discover new connections to sound-making and the sound experience. Soundwave was awarded BEST of 2007 and called the festival a ‘Future Classic’ by San Francisco Magazine. It has been featured on SPARK*, KQED’s (PBS) television arts show and called ‘Epic’ by Flavorpill, ‘Glorious’ by SF Bay Guardian and ‘Daring’ by SF Weekly.Past seasons include Humanities (2012), Green Sound (2010), Move Sound (2008), Surround sound and free sound in 2004, the year the Biennial debuted. at



Founded in 1998, MEDIATE Art Group is a San Francisco-based 501(c)(3) non-profit arts organization creating meaningful, cutting edge art and music experiences through the activation of people, places and environments in the San Francisco Bay Area. Working at the center of art and innovation, MEDIATE’s mission is to develop exhibitions and live events that challenge perspectives and inspire new and unique experiences within ourselves and the world around us; present diverse artists, mediums and places to exchange ideas and collaborate; connect new and diverse audiences to experimental arts and visions; and provide an innovative forum and an essential voice for the Bay Area’s progressive ideas to be seen, heard and explored critically, imaginatively and without limitation. MEDIATE showcases emerging and established local artists, as well as national and international artists, to bring groundbreaking ideas and perspectives to Bay Area audiences.

MEDIATE and its acclaimed avant-art and music program and biennial festival Soundwave have presented extraordinary experimental work of more than 350 artists from across the United States and Canada as well as Portugal, United Kingdom, Belgium, Norway, Singapore, France, Costa Rica, Austria, Australia and Japan. For more information:



For more information contact:


Autumn Hays, Managing Director                              Alda Tchochiev, Production Manager