Corpora Aliena: Eclectic Electronics

Corpora Aliena : ‘Eclectic Electronics’ 

Saturday 25th May, 2019 – doors 7pm / music 7.30pm – £8 adv / £10 otd  BUY TICKETS 

Corpora Aliena is pleased to present a concert of diverse experimental music performances based on the theme of ‘Eclectic Electronics’ – and features leading international and pioneering musicians and composers. Included in the programme are;

Graham Dowdall (aka Gagarin) will be performing a selection of pieces from his recent Phenomenology EP and Corvid album projects, and using these as the basis for improvisation. The performance will also make extensive use of field recordings manipulated alongside electronic sounds, beats and rhythmic patterns – and triggered from hardware samplers, drum pads and iPad, creating a mix of evocative atmospheres and noise;

Liz Helman will perform her new digitally-based composition ‘Amorphous’, that explores ambient textures with nuanced and meditative drone elements;

Bernhard Living will present a live performance version of his ‘Composition 2010/01 (Object World)’, which consists of sparse and slow moving sinewave-based sound textures – glacial movement with maximal repetition and minimal variation;

And Bill Thompson will be performing a new piece for Moog guitar, electronics and found objects. Previously performed and honed over the past year in several live performances, the new work is scheduled to be released in late summer 2019. 

In addition to the music performances, there will be a screening of ‘Una Película Recroda (A Film Remembered)’ (2015) by the Spanish experimental filmmaker Andres Duque, and with music by Morten Chrone. Using the materiality of the film process Andrés Duque has created a mysterious and dream-like  film made from TV captured images of ghostly figures coming out of a black screen. 

The Corpora Aliena Eclectic Electronic concert is an exciting opportunity to see and hear some of the leading international musicians and artists who are an important part of the contemporary experimental arts and music scene.

Corpora Aliena is curated by Dasha Birukova and Bernhard Living

Artists’ Biographies

Andres Duque

Peter Gidal in his “Theory and definition of Structural/Materialist Film” wrote that the main attempts of these films are to be non-illusionist. “The process of the film’s making deals with devices that result in demystification or attempted demystification of the film process”. After 40 years of this statement we see that the tendency goes backward – using the materiality of the film process Andrés Duque fills it with mystification, using digital video structures he creates a film-trans. With an old digital compact Cannon Camera that had “slow-flash” effect he shot the TV captured images of ghostly figures that coming out of a black screen. As a “remembered film” Duque chosen Chitilova’s “Daisies” and with a morphing effect he mystifies the origins, synchronized his rediscovered film with a repetitive and meditative music by Morten Chrone.

Andrés Duque is a Spanish filmmaker born in Caracas, Venezuela (1972). His work stands on the periphery of Spanish non-fiction and has a strong essayistic or documentary slant. His debut film, “Iván Z”, is a study of cult filmmaker Iván Zulueta. In 2011 he made his first full-length feature, “Color perro que huye”, which premiered at the Rotterdam International Film Festival and won the Audience’s Prize at the “Punto de Vista” International Documentary Film Festival of Navarra. The following year he was an invited artist at the Flaherty Seminar in New York. His film “Ensayo final para utopia” won the City of Barcelona Prize in 2013, while the later “Oleg y las raras artes” (2016), a portrait of composer and pianist Oleg Nikolaevich Karavaichuk, has received numerous awards. In 2018 he began a two-part project on the Karelia region, filming in Russia and in Finland.

Works: Iván Z (2004), Paralelo 10 (2005), Landscapes in a Truck (2006), La constelación Bartleby (2007), Life Between Worlds Not in Fixed Reality (2008), All You Zombies (2008), No es la imagen es el objeto (2009), Color perro que huye (2011), Ensayo final para Etopía (2012), Primeros síntomas (2015), Las manos de Nastasia (2015), Una película recordada (2015), Oleg y las raras artes (2016), Carelia: Internacional con monumento (2018).

Graham Dowdall (aka Gagarin)

Gagarin is the solo project of Graham “Dids” Dowdall making instrumental electronica that doesn’t adhere to or belong in any particular scene or style. His last album Corvid and current EP Phenonomology continue the path of recent work driven by aching melody, treated and raw foundsounds, subtle beat programming, distressed atmospheres and space. His influences lie as much in psychogeography, acoustic ecology and beat science as they do in the wide range of musics that inform him.

Gagarin’s history to date includes an extended period playing with Nico in the 80s and a list of collaborations over the years including John Cale, Ludus, Eric Random, Suns of Arqa, Band of Holy Joy, Raf & O, Low Bias, Zor Gabor.

Currently he is a member of avant rock legends Pere Ubu, duo Roshi ft. Pars Radio and Rothko. When he’s not exploring the outer reaches of the sonic galaxy Graham is a leading community music practitioner, expert in music and disabilities and a lecturer at Goldsmiths as well as having a sound art practice. 

Gagarin gigs regularly in UK and Europe with a hardware combination of drumpads, samplers, iPad and FX creating sets that range from free-form improv to fractured dance music.

Corvid was released at end of Nov 2017 and gained extensive reviews across Europe and airplay on BBC 6 Amazing Radio ,Resonance fm, RTE, Bayern2, and numerous  plays on German and other European radio. Phenomology came out in Feb 2019 and has been reviewed and featured worldwide, described in Pop Matters as “ organic and man-made sounds beautifully interacting “.

Liz Helman

Liz Helman was born in London, England, where  she continues to live and work. She is self-taught and with no formal training as a composer. 

Her current album, Daylight Dreaming, is available on Montreal label, Kohlenstoff Records.

As a multi-disciplinary artist, Helman has always had an interest in ambient music and sound art as a form of expression. Her work, both visual and sonic, is a response to place and environment. Sensitive to how these energies make her feel, she is interested in the subliminal and sonic exploration of these experiences.  By walking the streets, and experiencing different levels of sounds, layers and textures she always begins her process with field recordings before studio intervention. She very much likes working experimentally, following the thread of the sound to its ultimate destination, which she likes to think of as sonic alchemy.

She signed to Kohlenstoff Records, a Montreal-based label and arts-collective in 2015 – and has performed internationally, including a short residency in 2017 with Irena Tomazin as part of ZVO.ČI.TI DUO, CONA | institute for contemporary arts processing, Ljubjlana, Slovenia. Sound pieces have been heard at New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival 2014 and video works have been shown in London and abroad including: MUSLAB Festival, Mexico, 2014; Millenium Film Workshop, New York, 2014; LAB Film Festival at Hackney Wicked, London 2014; Bermuda Triangle Test Engineers benefit for Resonance FM, 2014; LOOP Video Festival, Barcelona 2011; Lesbian & Gay Film Festival, part of festival shorts with Barbara Hammer, BFI, London, 2011; FrinGe Film Fest 2011; Wunderland at tactileBosch, Cardiff 2011; Supermarket Stockholm Art Fair 2011; Whitechapel Gallery Open Screenings, 2010; Rich Mix Cultural Centre, London, UK, 10; Counted Weekend Festival, Roundhouse, London, 2010; Portobello Film Festival 2008; Visions in the Nunnery, Bow Arts Trust 2008; WAVE [Hybridity, Identity & the Self] – Ewha Arts Center, M-Post Gallery, Seoul, Korea, 2006.

Independent curation projects include Facing You, a photography exhibition for Fringe! – Gay Film Festival, 2012; Roma London in 2010; Before.After.Now – Visions of Iraq – a show on Iraqi Art Deluxe Gallery, Hoxton, London 2003. And under the banner of [noplaceprojects*], the exhibitions RePlace in 2009 and no place in 2008. She also has appeared as an Andy Warhol in Yason Banal’s installation piece, Last Warhol Stand Inn at Tate Modern’s 10th Anniversary Festival of Independents in 2010.

Bernhard Living

Bernhard Living (b.1948 UK) is an experimental music composer, curator and former multi-instrumentalist (playing alto saxophone and flute). He studied composition under the South African-born composer professor Stanley Glasser at Goldsmiths College, University of London, and philosophy under professors Jonathan Reé and Peter Dews at Middlesex University, London.


As a musician Living performed with a number of leading composers and musical innovators, including; Karlheinz Stockhausen, Cornelius Cardew, Hugh Davies, Barry Guy and Mike Westbrook. He is a featured soloist on a number of classic jazz, punk and rock albums, including; Mike Westbrook’s Celebration (1967), Release (1968), and Marching Song (1969); Manfred Mann’s Chapter Three (1969) and Chapter Three Volume Two (1970); Barry Guy’s Ode (1972); and Linder Stirling’s Ludus project (1982). The Sunday Times music critic Derek Jewell described Living’s performance style and technique as ‘revolutionary’.


Bernhard Living’s digitally-based compositions have taken minimalistic compositional techniques to what he considers to be their logical conclusion, with his music being characterised by sparse textures, long periods of silence, maximal repetition and minimal variation. The compositions are often devoid of musical elements such as melody, harmony and rhythm, and as an alternative they explore the use of sound colour and sonic textures.

Influences for Living’s work range from the historical avant-garde, including John Cage, Morton Feldman and Edgard Varèse; American minimal art, Agnes Martin, Donald Judd and Carl Andre; to contemporary loop-based dance music, particularly techno. In many ways, his music could be considered as an evolved non-dance form of techno, but one that exists within a different cultural context and along a different time continuum.

Live Performances

Composition 2016/06 (The Mysteries of Concrete) at Poetronica  15.12.2016 (Curated by Pavel Zhagun), National Centre for Contemporary Arts (NCCA), Moscow

Composition 2018/08 (Violin Stories) at Poetronica  21.04.2018 (Curated by Pavel Zhagun), National Centre for Contempoary Arts, Moscow

Bill Thompson

Bill Thompson (b. 1970 U.S.A.) is an American sound and video artist currently living in the UK. His work involves the combination of found objects, field recordings, repurposed live electronics, and digital media to create evolving structures for installation and live performance.. He performs as a soloist and with a number of groups including M/H/T with Jan Hendrickse and Tom Mudd, Airfield with choreographer Ian Spink, and in the past with Keith Rowe, Faust, EXAUDI and others.

As a sound artist, Thompson creates immersive environments that slowly shift and evolve over time and that focus listeners’ attention on the act of perception as much as on the work itself. His installations have been shown across the UK and abroad with his most recent being A Knowing Space premiering in London at Union Chapel in 2016.

Although originally trained as a guitarist, Thompson has worked with live electronics for the better part of 15 years. Since 2016/17, however, he has returned to guitar using one built by Moog combining built in electronics with miscellaneous table top devices, found objects, flashing lights, and the occasional vibrator.

He has earned numerous awards and commissions including the PRS for New Music ATOM award, the GAVAA visual arts award, a PRS for New Music Three Festival commission, the 2010 Aberdeen Visual Arts Award, and was nominated for the Paul Hamlyn Award in 2012.

Curator Biographies

Dasha Birukova

Dasha Birukova (b. 1985, Russia) is a curator and writer based in Lisbon and Moscow. She graduated from the Russian State University for the Humanities, Moscow, Russia, art history department and at the Russian State University of Cinematography (VGIK), Moscow, Russia, cinema history department. Her specialisms are experimental film, video and media art,

Birukova curated the “New Media” programme at the National Centre for Contemporary Arts (Moscow) and co-curated the Festival of Media Art “VideoFocus” organised by NCCA (2014 and 2015).

She was a co-curator of the exhibition “Error Message” that was part of the 4th Moscow International Biennale of Young Art, 2014.

In 2016, Birukova joined the team of the high-profile project “Geometry of Now” curated by British artist Mark Fell, organised by the VAC Foundation in Moscow.

In 2017, she curated the exhibition “Pink Flamingos” at the art space BLEEK in Belgium.

During 2018 Birukova lectured at The Russian State University for the Humanities, Moscow, Russia, Department of the art history and at the British Higher School of Art and Design, Moscow.