Recently I caught up with Matthew Evans, who we’ve featured on the blog before. He told me about a new project he was involved with, so I sent him a load of questions on it so he could tell you all about it.
Recently you’ve started up a new business. Can you describe it for us?
Sleep / Walk / Listen is a project that is designed to create stronger connections between electronic music and visual arts. We want to explore the way that these two art forms work together and create new experiences through our output.
Each month we curate a partnership that highlights the work of music, visual and video artists. These collaborations can be experienced in full at the Sleep / Walk / Listen website – www.sleepwalklisten.com.
As well as supporting these experiences digitally through our website, we also want to lend focus to the importance of tangible arts experiences. You can own each Sleep / Walk / Listen partnership artwork in the form of high quality limited edition screen prints, available to buy from the store on our website.
What makes it different from other artists working with musicians?
From the outset of a partnership we enable the music and visual artist to discuss and develop their work closely together. We find that this gets each partner thinking differently about their output.
We also encourage freedom of expression from both music and visual artist partners, and want the end product to be inherent of this artistic freedom. These objectives have been compounded by the discussions that we are having with the artists that we work with and the way that they are approaching their work with us.
The focus on artist freedom and the co-development of each project with the artists we are working with have already led to some exciting plans for our forthcoming partnerships.
What inspired you to set it up?
The initial idea for Sleep / Walk / Listen was born out of a collaborative arts project called Sleep/Walk Art Collective.
Sleep/Walk Art Collective is a project that I founded with Jack Hardwicke (visual artist partner for SWL001 and SWL002). Sleep/Walk Art Collective has grown into my collaborative visual arts studio.
Sleep / Walk / Listen formed from this initial idea, but has grown into a separate entity that allows us to celebrate our passions for music and visual arts and how they work in conjunction.
Who’s involved in it with you?
Since the birth of the concept I have worked closely with the other Sleep / Walk / Listen team members, Tom Nield and Dan Butler, to make Sleep / Walk / Listen into what it is today.
We have also been really fortunate to work with Seb Feehan and Josh Bamford of Next Door Films. They have enabled us to realise captivating video pieces in support of each partnership.
Outside of that I have to give special mentions to Dan Walters, who ensures that everything looks as it should online, and Jonny and Charlotte Akers who have helped us take our artworks from digital artwork to physical screen prints.
Which artists are you working with, coming up in the future?
We are really proud to have been able to work with Japanese house and techno legend Hiroshi Watanabe for the launch of the Sleep / Walk / Listen partnership series. Our second partnership, SWL002, saw Berlin based DJ and producer, Chymera take the reins. We are really pleased that our work at these early stages have given the project an international identity.
Jack Hardwicke has featured as the partner visual artist for these first two partnerships, his work giving us an exciting and rich visual basis to work from. His passions for electronic music have been instrumental in launching this project in the exact way we wanted to.
The Next Door Films guys and myself worked together to provide the video element of these partnerships.
Our plans for the future see us thinking in broader terms about how electronic music and visual arts can work together. Plans for our monthly partnerships are already beginning to develop in a different direction from SWL001 and SWL002, and this excites us.
What do you hope to achieve from it?
Longer term we have plans to run our own events that have an emphasis on the visual element of a club night, release our own music releases through a record label style format and even create a series of art installations in cities around the world.
As quality of output and experience are our main drivers we don’t want to rush the development of these other formats, but let them form when we know the time is right.
What are your next steps?
Having recently launched SWL002, we are still enjoying the reaction this is receiving. Beyond this, we are working towards getting everything together for SWL003, this will go live towards the end of this month.
We can’t give too much away at this stage, but we are excited about taking the project in a new direction and working with the partner artists we have in place. Keep an eye on our social pages and website to see what we have going on.
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