Yasunao Tone performing (photo by Plastiques Photography, courtesy of Serpentine Galleries, London)

The artist and avant-garde musician Yasunao Tone has been tinkering with tech for decades. A core member of Japan’s Group Ongaku and a founding member of the Japanese branch of Fluxus, he developed scores for happenings and sound installations before moving to New York in 1972, where he composed music for Merce Cunningham. In the early 1980s, he started manipulating CDs and CD players, pioneering many of the techniques adopted by glitch music artists in the ’90s. With the advent of MP3s, that practice evolved into purely digital interventions — what he dubs “Deviations” — which recently mutated yet again to incorporate artificial intelligence.

Tone’s recent practice of “AI Deviation” will be the focus of his concert on Thursday, August 3, organized by Blank Forms and staged at Gavin Brown’s Enterprise in Harlem. The AIs that Tone has been developing in recent years are programmed to be self-reflexive, listening to and learning from past performance to essentially become virtual versions of Tone himself, which he can then collaborate with and manipulate in a live setting.

When: Thursday, August 3 at 7:30pm (doors at 7pm; free with RSVP)
Where: Gavin Brown’s Enterprise (439 West 127th Street, Harlem, Manhattan)

More info here.

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Benjamin Sutton

Benjamin Sutton is an art critic, journalist, and curator who lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn. His articles on public art, artist documentaries, the tedium of art fairs, James Franco's obsession with Cindy...