Interspecies Communications

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Interspecies is very much engaged in the promotion of composers using animal sounds in their digital music composition. We think this piece showcases the potential. All of the bird songs in this ambient techno composition, including the featured Oropendola, were recorded during an Interspecies field project to the Amazon cloud forest at Amboro, Bolivia.

beaked whale

A Proposal
Imagine a musical interaction between orcas and musicians occurring off the north coast of Vancouver Island. Now imagine this event being broadcast live over the Internet for anyone in the world to hear. Also imagine it being broadcast through underwater speakers to an audience of people floating in a heated spa pool somewhere in the world.

With proper funding, could produce this Concert right now. We have been producing musical interactions with whales for 25 years. We would need funding, a spa venue and a few talented Internet technicians.


The Interspecies Art Programs

From the Interspecies Newsletter is known internationally for producing programs that demonstrate a seamless blend of art, science, and environmental activism. In our 30 years of existence, we have been a part of artistic and general consulting collaborations with groups as varied as the Smithsonian Institute, the German Arts Council, EXPO, The US Navy, The International Whaling Commission, National Geographic, Orion magazine, The Helsinki Science Museum, Kodiak Alaska Whalefest, The World Wilderness Council, and the Animal Welfare Institute. This work has been documented by film and TV productions produced in almost a dozen countries. Here are just a few highlights. Give a listen to our music with turkeys to put a smile on your face.

Bathing In Music (Ongoing)
jonahThe German Arts Council, in collaboration with, presented, in Frankfurt, a series of underwater concerts involving thirty musicians, dancers, and sculptors interacting with the watery environment of two adjoining swimming pools. Two sell-out crowds of nearly a thousand people per show swam in an around the underwater sculptures to a music that highlighted IC's recordings of orcas. German conceptual artist, Mickey Remann, designed Bathing in Music to translate his own experience of interacting with orcas as a member of the IC Orca Project into a context accessible to an urban audience. The recently constructed underwater Liquidrom Theater in Berlin Germany, plus the Bad Sulza music pool, stand today as the most inspiring development of Mickey Remann's tenure as artist in residence with various Interspecies' whale projects.

More pages about our underwater Concerts:

The Belly of the Whale CD (2006)

jonahIn 2006, collaborated with to produce a music composition and recording project that involved eighteen composers from ten countries. Each participant created a piece of of "ambient techno" music of less than six minutes in duration, all based on the same source material, which comprised over 300 sound samples of whales, dolphins, walrus, seal, fish, lobster, shrimp, ice cracking, waves, etc. Contributors included some of the most distinguished names in contemporary music including Scanner, Petri Kuljuntausta, David Rothenberg, Merzbow, and Christina della Giustina. The CD was released by Important Records. Go to our merchandise page to buy the CD.

Here's a few excerpts from the Belly CD:

Petri Kuljuntausta lives in Helsinki. One of his recordings is now traveling the galaxy on the Huygens space vehicle.

Scanner, from the U.K.,has recently composed the national anthem for the European Union.
Christina della Giustina lives in Holland. She creates music that links environment, media, and the human presence. Based in Tokyo, Merzbow is generally regarded as the king of an extreme music scene called noise art.

The Wild Heart
wild heartAs much as IC sponsors field work, it also nurtures creative ways to bring its underlying philosophy before the general public. With Gigi Coyle in 1987, IC co-hosted a well-received San Francisco gallery show of artwork created by participants on various IC field projects. Collaborating with the German University, ZEGG, in 1994-95 we co-hosted three week-long whale communication workshops aboard their research vessel, Kairos. In 1996, distinguished performance artist, Christian Swenson, and IC director Jim Nollman, collaborated on a performance tour of Europe on a show about animals that included live and tape music, dance, theater, slides, and costume.
With a different line up, also produced The Wild Heart for The World Wilderness Conference.

Other pages about our multimedia performances:


ZeroCircles Project (1998-99)
wild heartConceptual artist, Daniel Dancer, oversaw this far-reaching project of constructing zeros out of found materials in several US national forests, as a means of symbolizing and promoting the "zero cut" proposal which would end all logging in the US forest system. With over 50 zeros completed in 50 federal forests around the country, his art has attracted much media attention as well as many other artists and children who are creating their own zeros.

Other pages about Daniel Dancer's Art:


wild heartArt for the Arctic (1986-2001) has sponsored many expeditions to sites across the arctic, granting several talented artists an access to beluga whales, gray whales, polar bears, the aurora, tundra, and some of the most remote places on Planet Earth. The result has been documented in two books by participants, a series of radio shows broadcast across northern Canada, traveling expositions of earth art, and a genuine legend of a tale founded on one very real trip to save three gray whales stuck in an ice hole off of Barrow Alaska. This project was funded by, among others, The Salisbury Community Foundation, The Dolphin Connection, Geo magazine, The Canadian Film Council, and Outside Magazine.

Other pages about our Art for the Arctic:


Naming Cachalot
music with 300 dolphins
Cougar Existentialism