Sonic Postcards Episode 8: Helga Fassonaki from Oaxaca and Tabriz – 14/02/15


Things have been quiet on the Sonic Postcards front recently, but it’s a new year and we have a new episode from Helga Fassonaki who will be sharing two recent projects.

The first, ‘Holy Conch’, is the result of residency she fulfilled in August 2015 whilst in Oaxaca. The sounds presented were recorded in churches in the city, originally slipped into as a means of finding more peaceful ‘points of listening’ (a practice inspired by a workshop led by Akio Suzuki and Aki Onda in London earlier in the year).

The show will air on Saturday 14th October at 4pm (NZST) on 88.3FM (Auckland) and online on Audio Foundation’s AFM.

The second project is Khal, a project that continues after having completed a residency in Iran. Given the restrictions on females being able to perform solo in the country Helga has created and distributed visual scores to be interpreted and publicly performed by female performers across the globe.

Artist Bio:

Floating between worlds of experimental sound and visual art, Helga Fassonaki’s transdisciplinary practice approaches each of these worlds with insights gained from the other. Her practice, including her music-performance projects, Metal Rouge and yek koo, are informed by New York No Wave musicians and their defying of categorization, audience, and convention; the poetic, political and physical chants of Patti Smith; and the raw and damaged sounds of New Zealand’s free noise music of the Le Jazz Non era for stretching the parameters of improvised music. Informed by such artists for integrating the furthest reaches of subcultural expression into art, she has created sound and visual installations, group situations, films, and performances that utilize and question temporality, power structures, subcultures, fan cultures, and the human voice as a crucible for positive transformation. Residing in Brooklyn, New York, Fassonaki continues forging new performance dialogue with her coined ‘Radio Concept Tour’ exploring the relationship between body, microphone and air movement transmitted through radio waves. In Fassonaki’s current project Khal, she invites sixteen female artists to interpret sculptural scores she made while residing in Tabriz, Iran and in doing so investigates the idea of a ‘living score’.

Fassonaki’s work has been exhibited at Human Resources (USA), UCLA’s New Wright gallery (USA), Elysian Park Museum of Art (USA), LACE galleries (USA), Blue Oyster gallery (NZ), Box Gallery (USA), and Elam School of Fine Art (NZ) among others. She has performed at Hammer Museum’s, Made in LA as part of KCHUNG TV’s Crystalline Morphologies (USA), Open Melody Festival at UC Irvine (USA), Ear&Eye Festival (NZ), On Land Festival (USA), Public Fiction (USA), Whitney Biennial 2012 (USA), Café Oto (UK), Roodkapje (Holland) and a multitude of other galleries and venues throughout the United States, United Kingdom, Europe, Australia, Mexico and New Zealand. More recently, the album, ‘Three for Malachi Ritcher’ from her duo project Metal Rouge was included in the Public Collector’s exhibit in the 2014 Whitney Biennial and Experimental Sound Studio’s Audible gallery in Chicago.

Helga Fassonaki (web):


Sonic Postcards is a radio series curated by Rachael Melanson, hosted by AFM. For more info please see: