Nurtured over 2 years of collaboration, workshops, and live concerts Software Garden is an 11 track music album cultivating influences of pop, electronic and techno with choral and lush string arrangements to explore how a music album can be used as a space to bring people together.
Responding to recent complex global shifts that highlight increasing polarities between people that have led to increasing nationalism and desire for isolationism, Software Garden asks how we meet from both behind and beyond our screens. As digital and robotic technologies change the fabric of human systems, is it possible to create spaces that unite the human, ecological and technological with basic principles of empathy, care and kindness?
At the heart of the album is a series of close collaborations in which the contributors orbit around and make contact with one another across different generations. Like a central sun, Software Garden is narrated by poet and disability advocate Carol R. Kallend from Sheffield in the north of England. Her poetry reflects on her desire to have a robotic companion to fill the void left by the British Governments disability cuts that left her with drastically reduced access to care. Interweaving with the voices of others, Kallend’s words further unfold as lyrics and through collaborations with others including singer Robyn Haddon, Dutch singer/rapper Daisy Rodrigues, a British Choir and a robot named Pepper.
Featuring Danish dancer, artist and choreographer Casper-Malte Augusta as a main collaborator, the inherent political nature of the body is explored through choreography. This includes moments of intimate moments of touch, encounters with the American military, line dancing, and head banging to the imagining of ‘software’ in choreographic form. Evolving over a series of different settings, the videos emerge from screens that shift between interior stage like spaces to infiltrations into the external world. This includes an Undenominational Chapel in Sheffield, the Japanese Islands of Okinawa which face continued occupation by the American Military and the Isle of Portland, UK famed for it’s stones used to build the United Nations Headquarters.
With Special Thanks
Carol R Kallend (Poetry)
Robyn Haddon (Singer and Co-writer)
Casper-Malte Augusta (Dancer, Choreographer and Movement Facilitator)
Daisy Rodrigues (Singer and Rapper)
David Andrews (Lettering)
Modern Activity (Digital Animation and Title Sequences)
James Early (Camera)
Jesse Tuenter (Camera)
Jordi Welschen (Camera)
Chris Shaw (Colouring)
Emil van Steenwijk (Sound Production)
Featuring 'The Hospital Drawings' by Barbara Hepworth with permission from the Barbara Hepworth Estate
Generously Supported By
CBK Rotterdam, Mondriaan Fonds, Elephant Trust, Stedelijk Museum, Spike Island, Space Studios, Rowing Gallery, Sheffield Robotics, Artist International Tokyo (AIT), TAAK, Block Universe and andriesse-eyck galerie.