MATCHESS: THE CAIRN AT BISKOPSKULLA-HÖGSTENA
Whitney Johnson aka Matchess (Clearfield, Pennsylvania) is an artist who interprets the unknown with sound. She composes, improvises, and collaborates with the viola, as well as sine waves, tuning forks, electronics, organ, and vocalization. Her techniques reproduce meaning through a range of historical material processes, including reel-to-reel tape looping, cassette tape sampling, and field recording. Her latest release Sonescent (2022, Drag City) recreates the experience of 10 days of silent Vipassana meditation in Joshua Tree, CA where she heard “the last minutes in the life of music.” Three recent works have engaged with skepticism and belief in the effects of sound on the body. Huizkol (premiered at Lampo), The Tuning of the Elements (curated by the Renaissance Society of the University of Chicago), and Fundamental 256 Hz (commissioned by Longform Editions). In tandem with her sound practice, she received her doctorate in the sociology of sound from the University of Chicago in 2018 and she is currently an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Sound and Liberal Arts at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a postdoctoral researcher on sound and technology in the Centre for Gender Research at Uppsala University in Sweden.