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Jesse Dorris | October 01, 2012
"When I was young," says sound and installation artist Richard Chartier, "I actually wanted to be a landscape architect. It just wasn't in the cards for me, though."
Or maybe it was. Since his 1997 debut album direct.incidental.consequential, Richard Chartier has lit off for the territories of sound, mapping what he finds there and shaping it into a coherent vision of minimalist design. His recordings have received the Series Honorable Mention, Digital Music at Prix Ars Electronica and an honorable mention at Transmediale; his installations have been shown everywhere from the Whitney Biennale to the Centre Pompidou to Tokyo's ICC. His recording label, Line, has released essential documents from Alva Noto, William Basinski, and many others.
But Chartier's recent projects - a Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship to study a 600-piece, 19th-century tuning fork, a collaborative performance with painter Linn Meyers, an edition of fine art photography of what he calls "acoustic locations", and queer noise project pinkcourtesyphone - bring design to the forefront.
"Sound is physical," he explains. "My work is less ‘putting on a show' and rather more like a manipulation of interiors, physical and sensorial." Perhaps those cards were wrong, after all!