Sean Clute Statement
As an interdisciplinary artist, composer and performer I explore contemporary techniques for integrating diverse communication forms into a cohesive whole. My belief is that interdisciplinary creative practices represent collective imagination, knowledge, and skills that can generate limitless innovation. Collaboration is at the heart of my work whether it involves performing electronic music and video, building digital audiovisual instruments or directing large-scale events. Due to the nature of collaboration, my work can be unpredictable, mysterious, and anarchic. Personal narrative furthermore shapes my work into whimsical yet purposeful realizations. Audiences can witness these types of juxtapositions by observing the discipline of cleanly executed code amidst a playful mess of cables. To experience, learn and share my work inherently invites the viewer to become a participating force in my creative process and thus artistic evolution.

While interdisciplinary art can encompass a wide range of disciplines, I have been drawn to specializing in research and creation of audiovisual systems, instruments and forms. I come from a long tradition of performing arts and find that with the advent of emerging technologies I can experiment with both audio and visual graphics simultaneously, individually, or networked with others. The versatility of digital media tools allows for a high level of artistic freedom to intricately access, process and visualize data. My inspiration comes from historically significant innovators such as John Cage, Merce Cunningham, Nam June Paik and Edgar Varèse as well as contemporary artists such as Golan Levin, Luke Dubois, Ryoji Ikeda and William Forsythe. Additionally, the philosophies and inspirational lives of Pauline Oliveros, Christopher Shultis and Zemi 17 have given me valuable lessons to living with artistic integrity.

My artistic process begins with a clear concept of a project for which I create the necessary tools, software, hardware, and collaborative relationships essential for its realization. For example, in Mythos, Know Thyself (γνῶθι σεαυτόν), I wrote software, built electronic circuits and utilized these constructions to enable improvisation with non-linear narratives articulated by interactive animated characters and landscapes rooted in Greek mythology. During this solo performance, the audience was witness to a hybrid of iconic imagery and live hand-drawn animations in my attempt to capture the sprit of an ancient culture within a contemporary context. An artistic melding of past and present become possible with innovations in new media and technology. In Mythos, both moving image and sound attempt to create a new modality of storytelling.

In large-scale collaborations with the intermedia group DOUBLE VISION, such as the series Evolutionary Patterns and the Lonely Owl, I explored methods for integrating individual projects into interactive, self-organizing, and rule-based systems. In these events, video, dance, sound and installation co-existed in warehouses or galleries during performances spanning several hours each. Evolutionary Patterns and the Lonely Owl encouraged the audience to roam freely and explore inflatable projections, mirrored matrices, pulsating pods, sonic-works and other interactive performances. The work also aimed to inspire innovative methods of combining diverse ideas and forms of communication in the community at large.

The methodologies I use for formulating aspects of any project, whether solo or group, amplify my artistic process in that they are inevitably experimental. Experience has taught me to be inventive, observant, and adaptable. I value the active participation of audiences, collaborators, and communities. Currently, these elements have inspired me to question and investigate ideas of complexity and virtuosity. As excitement in the age of technology has awakened, implications of this period on contemporary art making are still enigmatic. As our comprehension of these technological forces deepen so will the need to refine our perceptions and inventions. In the future, I hope to continue incubating the meaning and intricacies of contemporary progress while harnessing these elements, reacting to their affects and using them to create new modes of communication.