Award: Fusion Fund

Year: 2020

Genre: Alternative

Instrument/voice type: Keyboard

Location: North East


I currently output work through two strands of separate practice:
1) I produce music under the moniquer “Mortiloqvist”. This takes the form of experimental medieval compositions involving studio production and synthesis. These releases are promoted on instagram and sold internationally through Bandcamp.
I am interested in: “Myth As Active Material For Creative Manipulation By Artists”, “Exploring the production of novel format artistic works through cross disciplinary collaboration between artists and across artforms”, Presenting as non-binary “The wider social significance of producing art by Addressing Transphobia and transhiddeness, rascism and Responding to the rise in fascism within online culture / music scenes”

2) My musical practice “Ben Freeth” involves working with underwater sound, field recording, underwater videography, and data (in the form of data sonification or phonography). I am interested in creating contemporary sonic performances enabling entangled encounters within “naturecultures” (a necessary entwining of the natural and the cultural, the bodily and the mind). This involves an exploration of sound and its ability to create relations within nature cultures, humans, environments, and technology. It also involves recognising non-humans both inter¬specifics and beyond species, as actants capable of agency. Works and performances are produced as assemblages constantly undergoing transformation through the interrelations of actants.
My practice asks the following questions:
How does sound mediate our understanding of specific naturecultures? And how can contemporary multidisciplinary art practices articulate and explore the relations between sound and environments within naturecultures through sculptural installation and performance.
I have been creating performances, installations, releasing work on cassette, presenting work, teaching and carrying out musical research since 2005. I have worked across the North East, the UK and Internationally, for example, performing at New Interfaces for Musical Expression in Australia and winning best paper at conference.

My work has been funded by Arts Council England, Wellcome Trust, Newcastle University, North East Institute For Creative Arts Practice and I am supported by Help Musicians.

Recent works include:
1 // Mortiloqvist (Experimental Medieval)
Dark Elder (21/06/20). Polar Lodge (30/12/20). Overmorrow (03/12/20). After Realms (25/03/19)
2 // From 2007 – 2018 I was involved in the Doom / Experimental metal scene playing “Shahi Bajaa” on over 50 physical releases on Vinyl and CD, CD-r and cassette tape through a variety of labels (including Burning World Records and Ritual Productions.) Hundreds of performances, highlights including:Roadburn, Tilburg ,Holland (2010, 2012 and 2014). Tavastia-klubi, Helsinki, Finland. Supersonic, Birmingham Custard Factory. Supernormal, Oxfordshire.

3 // Works as “Ben Freeth”
“Our Ghosts Are Gathering @ Ooze and Flow” Experimental Electronics and electroacoustic performance @GAS Contemporary, North Shields, UK. Commissioned by Constance Humphries and Arts Council England (22/02/2020)
Underwater Gallery - Museum of Portable Sound (June 2019)
“Wreck 1” - Underwater sound from the Wreck One project, Abject Gallery, Breeze Creatives, @ Late Shows, 2019.
“Clusters” performance at “Inside Skin” Great North Museum, 2018. Commission for Institute of Cellular Medicine / Wellcome Trust.
“Hybrid Cultures / Borderless Practice” Live performance featuring musicians invited over from Korea following a research visit to S. Korea (February 2017).
“Pelagics” - large scale video projection and multichannel sound at St. John the Baptist Church, Newcastle.
“Bio-Vortex” performed at NIME’16, Queensland Conservatorium, Brisbane, Australia.
Inspired by Northumbrian Myths, I propose a unique contribution to cross disciplinary collaboration in the form of a series of online events combining live musical performance (neo-medieval electronics) and dance (Butoh) with streamed roleplaying (in the vein of Critical Role) and further augmented by illustration and Digital Embroidery to take place on the Twitch live streaming platform. Beyond creativity and fantasy works I believe there are social issues within music scenes and online communities that this project will directly address by providing an example of integrated working. For example, between transgender and non-binary musicians by providing a platform for their talent and showing their visibility with in an integrated group this addresses issues of transphobia and trans-hiddenness within society.
There have been documented examples of increasing rise of fascism within online groups. By providing a positive model for collaboration featuring participants from a variety of races and gender identities this acts as a strong and powerful beacon for change within these online communities encouraging positive emulation and directly challenges assumptions about the constituents of these online communities.