Click on the Player icon in the middle of each image in this portfolio to go to a relevant video about the project.

Salt Marsh Suite, directed by Carol Burch-Brown and Ann Kilkelly, is a collaborative gallery installation and live performance in five movements. Its first iteration was at the Cube, Moss Arts Center, Virginia Tech, April 22-27, 2014.

In 2015/16 Salt Marsh was exhibited at the Taubman Museum in Roanoke, Virginia and it will be at Virginia Museum of Natural History/Piedmont Art Association in 2017.

Salt Marsh is based on field observation, video and audio recordings, and data collection in and near Bird Island, Brunswick County, a North Carolina coastal estuary. Most of the field work has been done by me over a period of several years, but in 2013 we took several of our buddies from the School of Visual Arts to the beach and marsh with us. We did 3d laser scanning in the marsh and elements of that imagery are incorporated into the piece.

Dance is essential to the project, with performances by an ensemble of six to eight dancers occuring at intervals during the installation. The project works with the imagery and sound of the marsh. Five elements of the habitat compose the movements of the suite: Water, Mud, Crabs, Birds, and Grasses.

Large, multi-channel screen and scrim projections programmed in Max/MSP/Jitter juxtapose the live human performance/presence with technologically articulated collected imagery and sound. Our intention is to create an immersive sensory environment that puts human actors (audience and dancers) in an intimate and digitally created “natural” world, and makes what is invisible to human perception or understanding literally loom large in the topography of the created environment.

The music and soundscape for Salt Marsh was composed by Tohm Judson, with Patrick Turner on bass.
Contributors and collaborators include: Joan Grossman, Thomas Tucker, Rachel Grant Rugh, Danah Bella, Steve Williams, Katie Conner, Dongsoo Choi, David Mills, Emilia Munoz, Tamar Petersen, George Hardebeck, and Liz Liguori. 
Salt Marsh is sponsored by the Institute for Creativity, Arts and Technology and the School of Visual Arts at Virginia Tech.

In the image above, I am listening and recording sounds in a tidal stream with a parabolic microphone. Photo by Ann Kilkelly.

Fiddler crabs on a mudflat.

A flock of mostly white ibis, near Bird Island.

A  custom built Max/MSP/JItter video processing patch that is a core element of the programming for Salt Marsh Suite.

Salt Marsh Suite installation and performance at Taubman Museum, Roanoke, Virginia, November 2015. Photo: Will Sellari.

Installation and dancers, Taubman Museum. Photo: Katie Powell