Alan Nakagawa, “Peace Resonance: Hiroshima/Wendover” (2018) (image courtesy the artist)

Los Angeles-based artist Alan Nakagawa’s interdisciplinary practice ranges from video to sculpture to performance, but is primarily grounded in sound, pushing past the confines of the white cube to the greater world beyond. This has included residencies with the Los Angeles Department of Transportation and the Great Streets neighborhood improvement program, as well as his DubLab radio show Visitings, for which he interviews artists working outside the mainstream commercial art world.

Next Wednesday, Nakagawa will be presenting two recent sound pieces which connect geographically distant locations through auditory experience and documentary video. Instead of simply listening to the recordings, however, audience members are given a balloon which will vibrate the closer they get to the speakers, highlighting the physical properties of the sound waves.

Peace Resonance: Hiroshima/Wendover mashes up field recordings made at the Wendover Hangar and the Hiroshima Atomic Dome, linking the site where the Enola Gay B-29 bomber took off in 1945, and the place where it dropped one of its devastating atomic bombs. The work has a special resonance for Nakagawa, as his family is from Hiroshima prefecture and emigrated to the US in 1957.

The second work is Conical Sound: Antoni Gaudi/Simon Rodia, which layers recordings made at Los Angeles’s Watts Towers and Antoni Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia in Barcelona. Although the former was created by construction worker and outsider artist Simon Rodia, and the latter by one of modernism’s greatest architects, they share similar, distinctive organic forms and the obsessive drive of their respective creators against all odds.

When: Wednesday, April 4, at 12pm, 6pm, and 8pm
Where: Human Resources (410 Cottage Home Street, Chinatown, Los Angeles)

More info at Human Resources.

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Matt Stromberg

Matt Stromberg is a freelance visual arts writer based in Los Angeles. In addition to Hyperallergic, he has contributed to the Los Angeles Times, CARLA, Apollo, ARTNews, and other publications.