Soundwave NEXT: To Hear the Earth Before the End of the World (Act I-iii ; Earth and Sky)

To Hear the Earth Before the End of the World (Act I-iii ; Earth and Sky) is a 60min sound journey by LaMont Hamilton featuring improvised movement by artist brontë velez.

The title is an alternate phrasing on poet Ed Roberson's book To See the Earth Before the End of the World. Over the past years, artist LaMont Hamilton has been collecting biodata — field and electromagnetic recordings — from around the world to gain "a ground zero understanding of our changing Earth." Hearing glaciers cracking, smelling forest fires, the mechanical cacophony of land being razed — all felt on a cellular level.

“Music is the healing force of the universe.” Healing is the future of sound. Conversely, sound has also been used as a method of warfare, of manipulation, destruction. Thus the lines have been drawn. To echo Anthony Braxton, “a re-examination of our experience in this realm” is now in order. Understanding this is to understand our smallness in the equation, our finitude. Reckoning with that smallness is a necessary preparation for the voyage this work hopes to achieve.


LaMont Hamilton

LaMont Hamilton (b. 1982) is an interdisciplinary artist based in New York. Hamilton has been the recipient of several fellowships and awards including the Jerome Hill Artist Fellowship, MacDowell Colony (MF ’15), Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship, Artadia Award, ArtMatters Grant and more. His residencies include Skowhegan, Camargo Foundation in Cassis France among others.

brontë velez

brontë’s work and rest is guided by the call that “black wellness is the antithesis to state violence” (Mark Anthony Johnson). as a black-latinx transdisciplinary artist, designer, trickster, and wakeworker, their eco-social art praxis lives at the intersections of black feminist placemaking & prophetic community traditions, environmental justice, and death doulaship.


This event is part of Soundwave NEXT, a new partnership between Gray Area and Soundwave, two veteran San Francisco arts organizations to explore the future of sound. The program invites curators, artists, producers, and collectives to present new performance-based works or productions based in sound. This program seeks to answer what is the future of sound as a construct and ask “What’s next?” for the medium as it relates to our collective social, cultural, technological and/or political experience.

Fall/Winter 2020
October 15: "To Hear the Earth Before the End of the World (Act I-iii ; Earth and Sky)"
By LaMont Hamilton

November 12: "Past and Future Forms"
Lead Artist Sholeh Asgary with Dena Al-Adeeb, Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, and Leyya Mona Tawil

December 10: "Super Position"
Lead Artist Bert Yip with Jeffrey Yip

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