SFUAD Will Host Sound and Photography Exhibition to Benefit ALS Association New Mexico Chapter

Date published

The Sept. 26 benefit reception will honor former Contemporary Music Program Chair Steven Miller

Media Contact:

Lauren Eichmann

Santa Fe, N.M.—Friday, Sept. 19—Santa Fe University of Art and Design (SFUAD) will present a benefit reception for the ALS Association New Mexico Chapter on Friday, Sept. 26 in honor of former Contemporary Music Program (CMP) Chair Steven Miller, who is very ill with ALS. The reception will feature a re-installation of the exhibition, Along the Pecos, a collaborative exhibition by Miller and College of Santa Fe (now SFUAD) alumna, photographer Jennifer Schlesinger Hanson (’98). The exhibition, also supported by current SFUAD CMP Chair Steve Paxton, will be held at SFUAD’s Critical Space Gallery in the Visual Arts Center from 4:30-6:30 p.m. All proceeds will benefit the ALS Association New Mexico Chapter and pay tribute to an amazing artist, father, husband, and friend to many.

“I am honored to have had the fortune to collaborate with Steven Miller on Along the Pecos beginning nearly 10 years ago,” says Schlesinger Hanson. “Steven conceived of the project in 2004, and asked me to collaborate using and creating photographs from my Earth Series, using many of my photographs that were taken ‘along the Pecos River.’ I had never done a collaboration with another artist in this way before, and if it weren’t for Steven, I never would have had the joy to experience working with another in such a creative, inspiring way.”

The Along the Pecos exhibition was first installed at the College of Santa Fe’s Moving Image Arts Department in 2008 when Miller was still a professor. While teaching in Singapore, he had the project published on DVD with Everglade Records in 2012. The DVD includes an introduction by Diane Karp, the then-Executive Director of the Santa Fe Art Institute. Donations will be accepted to benefit the ALS Association New Mexico Chapter during the reception, and the Along the Pecos DVDs will be for sale to benefit the Miller-Redcorn Family.

Donations in Steven Miller’s honor can be made at the reception and/or mailed to The ALS Association New Mexico Chapter, 2309 Renard Pl., Ste 202, Albuquerque, NM 87106.

Event Details

Friday, Sept. 26

Benefit Exhibition and Reception: Along the Pecos

4:30-6:30 p.m., Critical Space Gallery in the SFUAD Visual Arts Center

SFUAD campus

1600 St. Michael’s Drive, Santa Fe, NM

The exhibition will run through Oct. 5, 2014, by appointment only. Call 1-505-473-6500 for details.

Steven Miller Contact:

Marla Redcorn-Miller

ALS Association New Mexico Chapter Contact:

Kerrie Copelin, Executive Director


Jennifer Schlesinger Hanson:


Project Description

Along its course, the Pecos River links a multitude of geographies, joining a diversity of uses and abuses, personal and cultural relationships to it waters and histories, myths and possible futures. The river traverses public and private lands, designated wilderness and urban space, agriculture and industry as it winds its way through eastern New Mexico and ultimately across west Texas to the Rio Grande/Rio Bravo.

Mapping aural, visual, social and physical geographies of the Pecos River through abstract representations of time and place, Along the Pecos offers an immersive multivalent experience of sonic and visual interpretations of the river and its surroundings. In bridging the aural and visual, documentation and abstract representation, site-specificity and portable installation, Along the Pecos is intended to refocus and re-contextualize issues of ecology and relationship to place along the complex polymorphous river environment. Additionally, by presenting sonic and visual images through abstraction and simultaneous multiplicity, it engages in a critical dialogue with notions of representation. Miller’s sound recordings gather aural impressions of place along the Pecos River from near the headwaters in north central New Mexico down through the southeast corner of state. Arranged in a multi-layered and multi-channel surround-sound composition, the recordings both expose and investigate the complex sonic environment to be found along the river and among its surroundings. Rejecting attempts to Miller’s sound recordings gather aural impressions of place along the Pecos River from near the headwaters in north central New Mexico down through the southeast corner of state. Arranged in a multi-layered and multi-channel surround-sound composition, the recordings both expose and investigate the complex sonic environment to be found along the river and among its surroundings.

Rejecting attempts to romanticize nature sounds as somehow separate and isolated from the human world, the recordings — and their resulting compositional matrix — instead embrace the varied textures, timbres and rhythms to be found along the river as it negotiates passage among the diverse cultures, geographies and settings through which it courses. Birds, planes, automobiles, wind, insects and the ever-present and ever-changing water channel itself provide only some of the more common among the seemingly endless array of sonic impressions.

Schlesinger Hanson’s photographs situate these acoustic interpretations of the Pecos River through visual images of place. For this project, she has been photographing various organic environments found in the region of northern New Mexico. These photographs, a study from her Earth Series, present natural forces such as water, wind and light through abstractions of familiar patterns found in nature landscapes. They make visible the forces in nature that are often difficult to discern yet are powerful connotations of the physics of the natural world. Presented in 16x20” toned gelatin silver prints mounted with no frame, these images result in complex abstract patterns that rely heavily on the subtlety of detail.

Another visual element in the project are the Earth Maps, which utilize the same investigation of natural patterning as the Earth Series, but here individual 16x20”; images are brought together to form a diptych or a “quad-tych,” connecting and juxtaposing the constituent images. Maps have been used throughout history to describe land formations and provide directions for traversing or finding specific locations. Schlesinger Hanson’s Earth Maps investigate the common utilitarian notion of maps as tools through an abstract idea: to “map” these patterns found in the Pecos River region that may become familiar once they are linked together. The result is a landscape map of a particular locale that forms by virtue of the elements in nature.

Dislocating these sonic and visual images — both temporally and locationally — from their points of origin, Along the Pecos re-configures experience of place — both the here and there, the now and then — by isolating fragments of time and place and redeploying them in new spatial-temporal formations of sequence and simultaneity. Through this isolation, decontextualization and reconfiguration, sense of place opens up to a new perspective — a fiction which we hope will elicit curiosity, heighten sensory awareness, and provide a vantage point from which to re-examine attitudes and habits of being in relation to the multiple points of origins themselves — along the Pecos.

About the Artists

Steven M. Miller is a composer, sound artist, and musician most recently based in Singapore where he was Associate Professor of Sonic Arts at the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music at the National University of Singapore. His creative activity and background includes electroacoustic, instrumental, and vocal music; collaborative intermedia projects with photographers, film/video artists, dancers/choreographers, and actors; live performance, gallery installations, compositions for recorded media, and music and sound design for video/film/new media; audio recording and production; traditional musics of Java, Bali, the Balkans, Middle East and North Africa. He has performed in a variety of solo and ensemble contexts throughout the USA and Asia. Performances and radio broadcasts of his music have occurred in North & South America, Asia, Europe, and Australia.

He curated and produced the Santa Fe International Festival of Electroacoustic Music for 12 years; organized and co-hosted the weekly radio broadcast of contemporary music and sound art Other Voices, Other Sounds on KUNM 89.9 FM in Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA for 8 years; curated the Atrium Sound Space ambient sound gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico for 2 years. His writings can be found in international journals, websites, and magazines on computer music, acoustic ecology, and world music.

During the 2004-2005 academic year, while on teaching sabbatical, he was a visiting scholar at the Columbia University Computer Music Center; performer with Gamelan Son of Lion and Gamelan Kusuma Laras (in residence at the New York Indonesian Consulate); and gave guest lectures on his music at a number of venues throughout the region.

Previous full-time teaching posts include the College of Santa Fe, now Santa Fe University of Art and Design (New Mexico, USA) Contemporary Music Program; Alabama State University School of Music. Miller has conducted residencies, guest lectures, and workshops at Dartmouth College, Columbia University, Princeton University, University of Washington, The Evergreen State College, New York University, Hunter College (CUNY), The University at New Paltz (SUNY), University of New Mexico, Cornish College of the Arts, Western Illinois University, Nanyang Technological University (Singapore), and Sekolah Tinggi Seni Indonesia (now Institut Seni Indonesia) Surakarta (Java, Indonesia).

As an undergraduate Miller studied electronic music and composition with Ingram Marshall and audio recording & production with Peter Randlette at The Evergreen State College in Olympia WA. He completed an MFA in Electronic Music and Recording Media at the Center for Contemporary Music at Mills College, where he studied with David Rosenboom, Larry Polansky, Maggi Payne, Anthony Braxton and William Winant. In 1989-90 Miller was a Fulbright Scholar in composition, studying traditional and new music for gamelan at Sekolah Tinggi Seni Indonesia and the Pura Mangkunegaran in Surakarta, Central Java Indonesia.

Jennifer Schlesinger Hanson is an artist, curator, and educator based out of Santa Fe, New Mexico. She graduated from the College of Santa Fe in 1998 with a B.A. in Photography and Journalism and was an adjunct Professor there from 2005-2006. Schlesinger Hanson has exhibited widely at Southwest regional institutions such as the Marion Center for Photographic Arts (SFUAD) and the Santa Fe Art Institute, as well as national institutions such as the Southeast Museum of Photography and the Chelsea Art Museum. Her work has been published online and in print with international publications such as Black and White Magazine U.S and UK, the cover article for Diffusion Magazine Volume III, and Fotoritim. She is represented in many public collections, including the Southeast Museum of Photography, FL; The New Mexico Museum of Art, and the New Mexico History Museum / Palace of the Governors Photo Archives. She has received several honors in recognition of her work including a Golden Light Award in Landscape Photography from the Maine Photographic Workshops and the Center for Contemporary Arts Photography Award in Santa Fe, New Mexico, both in 2005. She has been awarded many distinctive nominations such as the Santa Fe Prize for Photography by the Center and the Eliot Porter Fellowship by the New Mexico Council for Photography. She was the Assistant Director of Santa Fe Art Institute from 2003-2005 and has been the Director of VERVE Gallery of Photography since 2005.

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