Lesley Flanigan

"Thinking real hard", from the album Amplifications (2009). Live @ SHADE inc / NBI, in Berlin - Germany, July 2010.


Lesley Flanigan is a New York-based sound sculptor, composer, vocalist, and performer. Inspired by the physical materiality of sound, she focuses on amplification itself as the subject of her performances, which weave sound from her voice with hand-built feedback electronics.

Her work with speaker feedback explores the physical acoustics of electronic sound by turning basic loudspeakers into musical instruments. ArtsCriticATL writes, "Flanigan's performance comes loaded with philosophical ideas, often blurring the boundaries among music, noise, sculpture and performance art." Crafted from found speaker components and wood, her instruments afford a delicate tangibility to electronic sound. Drawing from her background in sculpture and music, she layers waves of tones from her speakers with her own voice, shaping sound as a fragile mass.

Her feedback compositions are the subject of her 2009 album, "Amplifications", using only the sounds of her voice and speaker instruments. With influences ranging from post-rock and jazz to ambient and noise genres, her music combines a classical approach to composition with an appreciation for the art of melody and song. Music from the album formed the basis for a series of performances around the USA including The Stone (New York), Gray Area Foundation for the Arts (San Francisco), Galapagos Art Space (Brooklyn), Wellesley College and Crane Arts (Philadelphia). In Summer 2010, Lesley Flanigan continued her tour in Europe at venues including Monster Truck Gallery (Dublin), .HBC (Berlin), Rhiz (Vienna) and the prestigious Sonar Festival (Barcelona).

In addition to her solo work, Lesley Flanigan also performs as a member of Bioluminescence, a collaboration with video artist and composer R. Luke DuBois. Exploring the modality of human voice, DuBois records and rearranges Flanigan's voice and image in real time to shape an immersive environment of video and sound. She has wielded a soldering iron as a guest performer in the circuit constructing noise group, the Loud Objects. She continues to sing in the contemporary music scene, recently as a soprano in Tristan Perich's "Lit".

Her performances have been presented in numerous venues, festivals, and art spaces internationally including the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum (New York), Issue Project Room (Brooklyn), Sonar ('10 Barcelona; '10 Chicago), Transitio_MX ('09 Mexico City), NIME ('08 Genoa; '09 Pittsburgh), ICMC ('07 Copenhagen), and Bent ('08 Los Angeles; '09 New York). Her art has been exhibited at the ISEA conference in Singapore, Busan International Design Festival in South Korea, Ringling College's Selby Gallery and MCLA's Gallery 51. She has spoken about her work and given workshops at universities, art foundations, and hacker spaces around the country including Harvestworks, Dorkbot NYC, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Wellesley College, Copenhagen School of Architecture, and Noisebridge.

Lesley Flanigan studied sculpture at the Ringling College of Art and Design, and received a masters in media technology from the Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) at New York University.