sound work

string quartet and skyscraper 2.0

This is the second iteration of string quartet and skyscraper, composed for the NYC based string quartet ‘The Rhythm Method’. The recordings of the previous version, with the sound installation, have been the source material for version 2.0. With the frequency analysis software ‘Spare’ I extracted main resonant frequencies of certain sections and transformed them back onto the instruments. Now in a traditional performance situation, the quartet is accompanied by four separate tracks of electronics which are too created with the original recordings and envelope (volume) controlled by the dynamics of the four players.

Continue reading

confusion of the tongues
internet-piece for Spark and Echo

This piece is based on the story of the Tower of Babel, from Genesis 11:1–9, in which the confusion of tongues frustrated the construction of this spectacularly high edifice, scattering its people over the world. I aimed to decode this text (and the passages leading up to it, describing Noah’s settling and ancestry) through different internet-­based, real time translation programs in order to investigate the seemingly open and direct worldwide information exchange of modern communication. I also wanted to juxtapose the ongoing conflict among various interpretations of Bible texts with the cultural ignorance which has long plagued religious movements (as in the Middle East, home to Babel and most of the Old Testament).

Continue reading


the Austrian Cultural Forum as social instrument

Solo Exhibition at the Austrian Cultural Forum New York as centerpiece of Liquid Architecture / Frozen Music – Moving Sounds 2015

August 14 – September 16, 2015

traces of {dis]location - downstairs 1

press release:

“With this installation, Brooklyn-based, Austrian sound artist, composer, and improviser Bernd Klug transforms Raimund Abraham’s iconic Austrian Cultural Forum NY in Midtown Manhattan into a social musical instrument. The publicly accessible, interactive environment extends over three floors and uses the architectural and institutional structures of the building to create different zones and layers of engagement.
The visitors play an integral role: subtle feedback traces their movements as they walk through the installation, thus altering the soundscape; strings play with the question of the public’s conscious interaction; and electro-magnetic amplification sonifies the unheard noises of their cellphones and electronic devices.  Continue reading

string quartet and skyscraper

a composition by Bernd Klug featuring the Rhythm Method string quartet and his sound installation traces of [dis]location at the Austrian Cultural Forum New York

September 11, 2015
commissioned by New Music USA


For the world premiere of this composition, commissioned in 2015 by New Music USA, string quartet The Rhythm Method played in, on, and with Bernd Klug’s sound installation Traces of [Dis]location – the Austrian Cultural Forum as social instrument at the Austrian Cultural Forum NYC. Based on the unique architectural and acoustic properties of Raimund Abraham´s iconic “mini-skyscraper,” the piece further expanded on the installation’s relational processes by featuring snippets from the quartet’s recent repertoire and practice routines. As the four players wandered through the building, they urged audience members to construct their own sonic experience of the work, thus engaging on yet another level with the terms ‘cultural forum’ and ‘social instrument’.

Continue reading

When I walked into the room

Sound Installation for the Bard MFA Thesis Exhibition 2015

@ UBS Red Hook, NY

July 18-25, 2015

Video by Taryn Haydostian

In this sound installation, I was working with a new framework. While I had framed my previous, larger-scale work through architecture, social environment, institutions and the acoustics of specific art spaces, complicating the aesthetic outcome with the help of interactive feedback elements, I treated myself as the frame for this piece. This shift was the result of three accidents/injuries that occurred during my final summer at Bard. These traumatic incidents made it very clear to me that I must root my work in myself (and myself in my work) in order to further pursue a career in the arts, developing modes of interactivity and site-specificity which are both non-didactic and critical.

Continue reading

Out of Site

19. September 2015

for Groundswell 2015 @ Olana State Historic Site

co-organized by The Olana Partnership and Wave Farm’s WGXC 90.7-FM

press release:

“In this site-specific installation for Groundswell 2015, Brooklyn-based, Austrian-born sound artist Bernd Klug turns a section of Frederic Church’s estate Olana into an interactive instrument on the threshold of listening. With musical strings, Klug draws a multi-dimensional network through the trees at the switchback conjoining Ridge Road with Bethune Road.

The picturesque pastoral landscape and Church’s three-dimensional painting approach provide a container for Klug’s three-dimensional drawing space, which invites thinking and reflection. With no amplification or electronic manipulation, the strings will hardly sound, responding only to the wind and other environmental factors. This near-silence invites the visitor to ask what there truly is to see and hear, and what these sensory perceptions mean. How do seeing and hearing define our surroundings actively and passively?

Continue reading

Transmissions and Frequency Spectra of a Radio Station at Wave Farm

Artist in Residence @ Wave Farm

“Transmissions and Frequency Spectra of a Radio Station” is a site-specific sound work and installation centered around the electromagnetic residue that occurs when making radio. Conceived for the Wave Farm grounds, a large-scale network of musical strings, field recordings, and radio feedback will merge the acoustic and electromagnetic environment of the property to create a live generative broadcast environment in which “the radio” plays itself.

Here is a version I did for a live radio broadcast, which, du to the weather ended up consisting of pre-recorded material:

The will be a release with this material some time in 2016/17. Stay tuned.

BEARING, with Johanna Tiedtke

Collaboration with Johanna Tiedtke
Exhibition at Galerie Freihausgasse, Villach Austria
March 26 – April 29 2015

bearing plakat foto

This collaboration with the german, Brooklyn based painter Johanna Tiedtke focuses on the unheard and unseen and creates a room within a room, functioning as an instrument as well as a drawing in space.
The center piece of this installation is a metal frame hung on strings aligned to the geographic and geometric relationship of the Galerie Freihausgasse to the Austrian Cultural Forum in New York. With vibrating metal plates the artists aim to catch traces from the visitors, which after the exhibition will be scanned and transferred into painting
on translucent paper by Johanna Tiedtke for Bernd Klug’s exhibition at the Austrian Cultural Forum in August/September 2015. With piano-wire, piezo discs, transducers, microphones and speakers Bernd Klug traces once more the real time acoustic properties of the gallery space and it’s visitors.

Continue reading

edits for Rechnitz Hall

Sound Installation ( ce.ins_0006 )

@ Monmouh University, Nov 20. 2014

monmouth installation pic

presented by contour editions and the Art Now Series with artist talk and live performance

This sound installation features my newest developments around a piano-wire based interactive feedback system. Strings conduct audio signals and create acoustic and visual fields and relationships. edits is based on different ways of mounting the wires without fixing them at both ends. Magnets, weights and flexible walls make this system an open one, offering options as much as it presents decisions. Room frequencies, wavelengths and the connection points of the strings determine a spatial and time-based environment which questions the framework of the Rechnitz Hall as a well defined exhibition space. Using the means of transducers, piezo- disks, single coils and speakers, the found sounds amplifie and create an interactive situation, blurring the lines between sculpture, architecture, instruments and sound. In a performance, students get a chance to play this sound installation in different ways, transforming architecture directly into an orchestra.

Continue reading

Sound Installation for three A/C’s and a Room

(Sound Installation @ Woods Shooting Studio, Bard College NY)

July 27th 2014

(recorded by Geoff Mullen)

This sound installation is based on a hyper-acoustic room, which contains three big air condition units for a mid-sized college building and the impossibility of controlling them.    I started by mapping the room and its different acoustic zones, knowing that I won’t be able to hear all the different constellations of noises provided by the A/C-units during the setup process.
Two of them were hanging on each side of the rectangular room and the third one was in hidden in a big storage room adjunct to the main room. I then attached piano strings to these machines to track their vibrations and sounds and send them to sound objects such as a sound board, a metal plate, a piece of yet unfurnished cedar and a metal pipe and one string out of the closet all the way across the room, touching the other strings. The strings were mounted with magnets, to keep each connection variable, temporary and precarious. Additionally I had 3 wooden rods balanced to the objects, falling or not falling down in moments of high excitement.

Continue reading