Jad and Tarek Atoui: Through Rust and Dusk

October 25, 2022

Sanna Almajedi talks to Jad and Tarek Atoui about their experimental music duo, Through Rust Dusk. The conversation is followed by an excerpt of their performance at e-flux on September 26, 2022 that incorporated improvisation, custom made instruments, field recordings, and electronic sounds. 

Read more about Tarek Atoui’s The Whisperers (October 1–December 10, 2022) at Flag Art Foundation here.

Jad Atoui is a Beirut-based sound artist and improviser. He composes and performs electronicand electro-acoustic music and has worked with musicians like John Zorn, Pauline Oliveros, Laurie Anderson, Chuck Bettis, and Anthony Sahyoun. During his formative years in New York, Atoui found interest in the New York avant-garde scene. He began working closely with NYC downtown musicians and learning improvised music techniques, while also working at the Stone and the Guggenheim Museum. In 2015, Atoui spearheaded the “Biosonics” project in collaboration with scientist Ivan Marazzi where they used bio-sonification of behaviors as compositional tools. The project was later published in John Zorn’s Arcana Book Vol. XVIII and premiered at National Sawdust as part of The Stone’s commissioning series. Atoui has given and co-directed workshops at Marfa Sounding, Ashkal Alwan, and Beirut Synth Center, and has been a resident at The Stone, The National Sawdust, Beirut Art Center, Arab Image Foundation, and Sharjah Art Foundation.

Tarek Atoui is an artist and composer born in Beirut. His work stems from performance and looks into how sound can be perceived with sensory organs other than the ear, how sound acts as a catalyst for human interaction, and how it relates to social, historical, and spatial parameters. The point of departure for his works is usually extensive anthropological, ethnological, musicological, or technical research, which results in the realization of instruments, listening rooms, performances, or workshops. Atoui has presented his work internationally at the Sharjah Biennial in the United Arab Emirates (2009 and 2013); dOCUMENTA 13 in Kassel, Germany (2012); the 8th Berlin Biennial (2014); Tate Modern, London (2016); CCA NTU, Singapore (2017); Garage Moscow (2018); the 58th International Art Exhibition of la Biennale di Venezia (2019); the Okayama Art Summit 2019; the Sharjah Art Foundation (2020); The Fridericianum (2020); And Pinault Collection (2021).  He was appointed co-artistic director of STEIM studios in 2007, and of the Bergen Assembly, a triennial for contemporary art in Norway in 2016. He is the recipient of the Suzanne Deal Booth / FLAG Art Foundation Prize 2020. Tarek Atoui currently lives and works in Paris, France.

e-flux music is curated by Sanna Almajedi. 

Music, Podcast
Sound Art

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