Douglas Henderson

Sound artist/composer Douglas Henderson has been showing, composing, and performing in New York City and internationally for more than 20 years with works in galleries from the Whitney Museum in New York to Muu Gallery in Helsinki to SICMF in Seoul South Korea. His primary focus is on multi-channel electroacoustic compositions and installations, with a growing body of sound-producing sculptures and the occasional musical score. He studied with Paul Lansky, J.K. Randall and Elie Yarden and received his PhD in music composition from Princeton University. He recently chaired the Sonic Arts Department at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and shared in the 2005 Mercury Prize for his mixing work on Antony and the Johnsons' “I am a Bird Now”. His work can be heard on Resonance magazine's Sound Art Supplement CD, as well as on Cabinet Magazine's #7 Syntax Error CD.


Polyconic Projections (June 2006)

Douglas Henderson and Zeena Parkins have worked together in various contexts for many years, from improvising to instrument construction. Polyconic Projections is their first collaborative composition project. The original sound material was composed by Parkins for a dance piece by choreographer Jennifer Lacey, and was then reworked as a stand alone audio CD, $shot, engineered by Henderson. The palette is of contrary geometries, receding planes and recursive staircases of sound. A double exposure of controlled crystalline synthesis over the gestural immediacy of fluttering plastic, paper, chirping sytrofoam and creaking leather. Intimacy amplified into threat. The sound is continually tipped and refocused. Parkins handed over the original tracks to Henderson for a dedicated Diapason remix, to take maximum advantage of the 10 channel speaker system, the elongated architecture, and the free time-sense of the gallery. Moving a piece into multi- dimensional space from stereo requires alterations not unlike those attempted by map makers, who must find ways to represent an oblate sphere on flat paper (whence the title). In this case the flat is made spherical, flat stereo sound turned into full 3-D, and put into a gallery context (where people wander in and out as they please) rather than a concert music one, with attendant changes in durations, centers, and structural trajectories.