For more than ten years now, Tomoko Sauvage has been exploring the acoustic qualities of water in its different aggregate states. Sauvage was born in Yokohama and moved to Paris in 2003 after studying jazz piano in New York. Inspired by Alice Coltrane and Terry Riley, she began to focus on Indian music. A crucial experience was a concert of Aanayampatti Ganesan, a master of the jal tarang, an Indian musical instrument consisting of a number of ceramic bowls filled with water that are struck with thin wooden beaters. Using various additional electronic devices and several hydrophones, she went on to develop her own electro-aquatic instrument, that she refers to as a “natural synthesizer.” Now and then, the oscillating waves, drops, and air bubbles dancing in the water create subaquatic feedbacks, that the artist modulates with great sensitivity. On a concert trip to Japan, says Sauvage, it was pointed out to her that her subtle, contemplative music sounds like a suikinkutsu: “It is almost like I traveled all around the world only to come back to my roots.”
Ceramic bowls, electronics: Tomoko Sauvage
In cooperation with SHAPE – Sound, Heterogeneous Art and Performance in Europe. Sponsored by the European Union’s “Creative Europe” program. Tomoko Sauvage is SHAPE Artist 2018.