Category Archives: News

news and special announcements

VIDEO | in the land of the headhunters

Sam Ashley: In the Land of the Headhunters | a video by Stephen Malagodi recorded Live at Audiotheque on Vimeo


leading proponent of experimental music and sound art in the Southeast

with support from
John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

and from
City of Miami Beach Cultural Affairs Program and Cultural Arts Council
State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture
Miami-Dade County Mayor, the Board of County Commissioners and the Cultural Affairs Department

additional support from
leader in superior sound technology

special thanks to our partner organization
South Florida

Digitalizing iSAW’s Archive

We have began the process of digitizing 20 years of Subtropics DAT recordings contained in our archive. This project is headed by our archivist, composer Julio Roloff. We are also preparing to scan paper documents and photos related to that history. Our plan is to upload what we can to this website for easy access. Stay tune for news about this project.



This Weekend only
Sat Oct 3 + Sun Oct 4 2009
10 AM – 6 PM

artists – circuit benders – tape/cassettes/8-bit musicians
teachers – students – art collectors – curators – other colleagues



iSAW – 12355 NE 13th Place
(look for the sign by the railroad tracks)

(305) 301 -0277

updates at:

to schools, artists & non-profits

Our goal is to raise $2,000+ to get materials and a new pro scanner
for our educational programs.



computer desks
cassette racks
and more…


musical instruments
patch bays
audio processors
computers with audio cards
computer speakers
VHS players + blank tapes
cassette players, record players
and more…



Fluxus piano (signed by Alison Knowles) plus activity sets
and more…

SOUND: Press Coverage

summer 2009

summer 2009


Mix Magazine


A Description


SOUND is a traveling sound art exhibition—curated by Gustavo Matamoros with the assistance of David Dunn—originally organized by iSAW in celebration of Subtropics 20 at the Bass Museum of Art in Miami Beach. SOUND is one of the most comprehensive exhibitions to focus upon the rich and varied body of creative and historical sound work created in past and recent decades. Unlike most traveling exhibitions, SOUND is not a static show with fixed content. It involves a flexible format that is site-specific in response to individual programming needs and available architecture. SOUND draws upon a unique and large collection of much of the most significant works from the sound art tradition to custom design each individual presentation for specific exhibition venues. The curators are not only well-established figures in the experimental music and sound art communities but also professional audio engineers and sound designers.

At the core of the exhibition is a pre-curated set of sound installation works operated by a central computer and routed to a multi-channel sound system. Additional sculptural pieces are also choreographed to integrate with the sound installations. A flexible selection of satellite pieces is available for curatorial selection. These augment the reach of the show and can occupy multiple gallery spaces. The principal curators decide the selection of these works in collaboration with the presenting organization during a preliminary site visit. Performance related elements can be included into the show in order to generate additional exhibition pieces and lower shipping costs. *

SOUND presents an in-depth experience of a tradition that has evolved, in parallel to and in interaction with, the more familiar aesthetic paradigm of 20th century music that has emphasized music as emotional communication. While not rejecting this concept, the sound art tradition has also sought to create aural experiences that emphasize the ephemeral materiality of sound, the act of listening, increased sensitivity to our aural environment, exploration of physical space, perceptual processes, socio-political engagement, and the nimbus of complex communicative interactions possible in the overlap between language and music. Some of these works can be squarely placed within a more familiar musical framework but many represent a conspicuous challenge to long-held assumptions of musical form and function.

SOUND emphasizes these creative strategies for auditory creation that draw attention to the structure of auditory perception itself and/or issues of sound as an organizing factor in both human and non-human living systems. It presents acoustical artifacts and processes, interactive installations, time-based compositions, and real-time performance events, through a site-specific design philosophy that solves many of the problems previously associated with the exhibition of sound art: sonic bleeding between individual works, incompetent installation and/or lack of appropriate acoustical knowledge, and inferior auditory delivery technologies. In addition to an ongoing sponsorship between the exhibition organizers and Sennheiser Corporation—ensuring access to some of the most sophisticated sound technologies available—the collective expertise of the organizers amounts to over 60 years of professional experience at presenting sound in space.

SOUND is an extraordinary blend of aesthetic and scientific knowledge that is dedicated to providing a deeper understanding of how sound and our sensory modality of hearing are unique organizing forces within human culture. Not only is this evidenced by the emergence and solidification of artistic genre that emphasize aural experience but also by a diverse array of scientific disciplines that have grown in parallel to these artistic ones: bio-musicology formalizes thinking about the biological origins of music, bioacoustics studies the auditory behavior of non-human living systems, psychoacoustics studies the biological and perceptual processes of human hearing, data sonification makes streams of computer data experiential through sound, and acoustic ecology examines how sound is an integrative principle in human and natural environments. Throughout its curatorial decisions, SOUND connects unique artistic creations to all of this scientific knowledge base in ways that provide for ample educational opportunities and community interactions.

SOUND provides a distinct exhibition event that is both deep in its intellectual implications and physically stimulating. It is also an experience that can be repeated indefinitely by visitors because the time-based nature of many of the works—and overall sensorial richness—ensures that new experiences will occur with each visit. It is almost impossible for anyone to experience everything with even multiple visitations. Each presentation venue will also have a distinct combination of exhibition events and artifacts that are custom selected and matched to the acoustic and physical properties of each venue space. They will also be carefully automated so that there is minimal interference between individual works. Additional performance events can be added to the overall exhibition from a near inexhaustible international network of the most original creative minds in the fields of auditory art and music. SOUND can be understood to be a dynamic conduit between the exhibition world and this largely untapped resource of amazing sonic and artistic phenomena. Most importantly, SOUND is an occasion for these kinds of fascinating events and artifacts to be experienced in the way that their makers intended them, with exacting standards of technological, acoustic, intellectual, and aesthetic clarity.

The inaugural presentation of this exhibition took place at The Bass Museum of Art, Main Exhibition Gallery,  and attracted the support of The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and The City of Miami Beach, among other funders, and was sponsored by Sennheiser Corporation.

*Example: Music for Piano No. 5 by Toshi Ichyianagi consists of an abandoned upright piano that is prepared as a target for dart throwing. The presenter provides the piano for preparation and the finished piece can remain as part of its permanent collection.

________ LINKS:

How To Book This Exhibition (Booking The Sound Exhibition)

isaw alert | salvese quien pueda!

Here is something you can do to help maintain arts funding in Miami-Dade County for organizations like Subtropics, iSAW, South Florida Composers Alliance, etc.:

1. (and only) write a letter to your county commissioner immediately! (disclaimer: this is not a call to action)


Dear Commissioner (Insert Last Name Here)

(Potential first sentence for the letter sent to the Commissioner for the district in which you live/vote:) I am writing to you, my elected representative to the County Commission, to let you know of my deep and abiding concern as a resident and voter regarding the County’s FY2009/10 budget.

(Potential first sentence for letters sent to all other County Commissioners:) There are critical issues affecting the County’s arts and cultural support for which we need your help.

The Mayor’s proposed budget cut to the Department of Cultural Affairs is intolerable.

While we understand the need to prune the County’s operational budget to fill the large budget gap, we ask that you seriously look at the entire budget and ask yourself how shortsighted it would be to lose important support of the cultural community. Consider the millions of dollars the arts generate each year which would be lost in these reductions. The County’s economic impact of the arts study, released last year by the Department of Cultural Affairs, demonstrates that every $1 dollar of County arts funding invested leverages $27 of other private and public funds. This return on investment is remarkable evidence of the effective and worthwhile use of public funds. While $3.5 million is comparatively little in the context of the County’s target for overall budget reduction, it is an enormous portion of the County’s investment in its cultural life. Cutting these funds will have devastating, ripple effects across the various other funding sources that the County’s support helps to generate.

Annually, Miami-Dade’s arts industry generates nearly $1 billion in local economic impact, employs roughly 23,000 people full-time, and, in addition, receives the contributed skills and time of 19,000 arts volunteers. Thousands of jobs will be lost if these cuts are kept in place.

County government’s leadership and investment in the arts and culture has contributed directly to our community beginning to realize its goal of becoming one of the world’s most exciting cultural destinations. The proposed draconian cuts to the Department of Cultural Affairs will disrupt the cultural growth of our community and will cripple our efforts to attain our ambitions to attract business, tourism and citizens who are proud to call Miami-Dade County a true leader in arts and culture.

Thank you for your past support and for recognizing the value, importance and far-reaching benefits of building a great cultural life for our community. I strongly urge you to vote to continue current support for the arts and the budget of the Department of Cultural Affairs.

Your Name

Who is your Commissioner? Click here to find out

Miami Dade Board of County Commissioners:
District 1
Barbara J. Jordan

District 2
Dorrin D. Rolle

District 3
Audrey M. Edmonson

District 4
Sally A. Heyman

District 5
Bruno A. Barreiro

District 6
Rebeca Sosa

District 7
Carlos A. Gimenez

District 8
Katy Sorenson

District 9
Dennis C. Moss (Chair)

District 10
Javier D. Souto

District 11
Joe A. Martinez

District 12
José “Pepe” Diaz

District 13
Natcha Seijas
No email – Fax 305-375-2011

iSAW online project | Jason Freeman: The Sound Microscope

by Jason Freeman and Mark Godfrey for iSAW

Sound Microscope by Jason Freeman and Mark Godfrey for iSAW

Composer Jason Freeman asks you:
What is sound made of?

Sound Microscope is free to use available through our website. But donations would be most appreciated. Hope you enjoy it and please, drop me a note to let us know how you like it.

To find it, simply click on the image above

“In the science classes I took growing up, we spent a lot of time learning about the complexities of the world that are not visible to the naked eye. We watched the powers of ten movie. We created chemical reactions. And we looked at all kinds of things under the microscope. But it wasn’t until many years later that I learned how the same thing is true for sound. There are all kinds of amazing structures within sounds that are hard for the naked ear to notice.” So when we asked Jason to come up with an interactive piece for our website to help people better understand sound, he came up with the idea of a Sound Microscope.

Sound Microscope is a simple interactive web application designed by Jason Freeman and Mark Godfrey for exploring the inner lives of sounds. A pan-and-zoom interface (similar to online map services) isolates small fragments of a sound file in time and frequency space, bringing structural subtleties and hidden details to the aural foreground. It is intended to help students (or anyone!) learn about the visual representation of a sound and its frequency components while encouraging them to listen in new ways and from new perspectives.

Jason Freeman will be uploading this project into our website during his upcoming residency at iSAW, September 26-29, 2008. Here is his schedule:

  1. 09-26-09 7:30-11:30AM: special guest lecturer: isaw’s sound studies classes, Design and Architecture Senior High School
  2. 09-27-09 10AM-4PM: sound microscope session / upload, isaw, 12355 NE 13 ave #206
  3. 09-28-09 2PM: featured artist: Living[room]Music, Light Box, 3000 Biscayne Boulevard


links to coverage:

South Florida Classical Review,


ART KENDALLMAN (1957-2008)

Friend and colleague Jorge Bartlett, single perpetrator
of countless acts of kindness and resistance, and
better know in the World-Wide-Wynwood scene, Miami,
New York, Puerto Rico and beyond as:
A R T K E N D A L L M A N or K M A N
departed Friday, June 20, 2008, destination unknown.

Here’s a small tribute to his life and work.

Subtropics Marathon 18 / photo: luis olazaba

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

“Soundscape with K-Man: Destination Unknown” (2008) GM – 1MB; audio format: mp3

A contribution from HED: (5″x7″) poster that Art was distributing at one of the mid-80s exhibition/events at Moosart Gallery (while dressed in quasi-military gear and orchestrating an army of miniature rockets, soldiers, etc from a camouflaged rolling cart):

The Justin MacDonnel Creative Fellowship Award | 2007-08:
Miami Sound Media Artist Rene Barge

The Justin MacDonnell Creative Fellowship Award
RENE BARGE, miami sound media artist

miami sound and media design artist rene barge has received isaw’s 2007-08 creative fellowship which provides him with one year of access to our [i] soundstudio. aside from developing new work, he will mentor a group of students from miami springs high school who will be involved in the design this website and other design projects

rene’s fellowship activities will also include, an understanding sound lecture (feb 4, 2008) and a sound installation show at dorsch gallery (feb 9, 2008). rene will also be guest curator of isaw’s living [room] music series to restart when isaw moves in with miami light project in the summer of 2008.

you can follow the progress of rene barge‘s work at isaw’s [i] soundstudio by visiting his website:

this fellowship is made possible through partnerships with miami-dade county public schools and dorsch gallery. isaw is funded by the department of cultural affairs of miami-dade county and the division of cultural affairs of the state of florida.