Magical Consort
October 14

Marginal Consort

Concert in the Foyer, free wandering. Access until 8:30 p.m.

  In resonance with Mike Kelley’s exhibition Ghost and Spirit, the Bourse de Commerce has compiled a programme of concerts and performances that address the importance of music in Mike Kelley's work. This programme draws on his influences, close collaborators, and a generation of musicians and performers who have been inspired by his musical explorations.

      The Bourse de Commerce, the New York label Blank Forms, the Berlin label PAN and the Polish music festival Unsound present a concert by the Japanese improvisation experimental group Marginal Consort, whose multi-hour performances use household objects, children's toys, bamboo rods and acoustic instruments in their sound creations. This concert directly echoes the early performances of Mike Kelley's anti-rock group Destroy All Monsters, whose happenings featured modified instruments and found object. 

     Marginal Consort is a Japanese collective improvisation group founded by musician Kazuo Imai in 1997. The ensemble members were handpicked by Imai from the East Bionic Symphonia, an earlier group assembled from students who attended the first class of artist and composer Takehisa Kosugi at Bigakko, a radical art school in Tokyo in the 1970s. Marginal Consort has performed one concert in Japan annually since their founding, and occasionally accepting additional foreign invitations.      Each performance is highly variable: beside the venue and the length—always at least three hours—the group never discusses the event’s structure before the show. They prefer to perform in broad flat spaces, scattering members to the corners of the room. Sound-making devices include bamboo and wood sticks, stones, marbles, handmade electronics, water, and other natural elements or quotidian objects. Members perform individually, inviting coincidental combinations that merge and morph as the audience moves around the space, creating a highly personal and participatory sonic environment. Current participants include Imai, engineer Kei Shii, artist Masami Tada, and musician Tomonao Koshikawa. 

     Founded in 2016, Blank Forms is a New York-based non-profit organization that supports emerging and under-represented artists working across temporal disciplines such as experimental music, performance, dance, and sound arts. It seeks to create new systems for preserving, nourishing, and exhibiting to the public the work of historically established and emerging artists. Black Forms provides artists with curatorial support, residencies, commissions, and publications to help them document, disseminate, and make. 

     In 2008, artist and musician Bill Kouligas founded the PAN music label, whose artistic line is formed at the intersection of music and contemporary creation. For the past 15 years, PAN has guided current sound production and promoted artistic practices irrigated by sound, shaping an ever-changing definition of experimentation.

     Unsound is a platform dedicated to contemporary and experimental music. Their main festival takes place every year in Krakow, Poland. Other events take place in New York, Adelaide, Toronto and London.

In resonance with Mike Kelley’s exhibition Ghost and Spirit, the Bourse de Commerce has curated a programme of concerts and performances: 

- On 14 September, American artist Will Benedict presents the musical performance Pandemonium 

- On 15 October, a concert by the the American trio Dick Slessig Combo

- On 18 October, British artist Anthea Hamilton presents Decade of Emotion 

- On 20 October, a concert by Sun Ra Arkestra and by American musician KESSWA, with an introductory lecture by French journalist Joseph Ghosn 

- On 21 October, Loris Gréaud and Lee Ranaldo present Cortical: Soundtrack for a Monograph


- On 7 February the artist Lily McMenamy will premiere her latest solo theatre piece “A Hole is a Hole” and the singer Bernardino Femminielli presents his concert « pot-pourri »

- On 16 February, on the occasion of the closing of this exhibition, the Bourse de Commerce and New York label Blank Forms are hosting a final evening of performances that combine poetry, noise, and extreme rock music with John Sinclair, Junko, Cannibal, Lizzi Bougatsos & Marc Edwards