Kata Kovács

Kata Kovács is a sound artist and interdisciplinary performer. A 2007 graduate of Budapest Contemporary Dance School, she has been living in Berlin since 2011. She is active in several ensembles, including VROUW!, KvT, FAKE Company, and a long-term collaboration with artist Tom O’Doherty. Her works often focus on contemplation and repetition, on the movement of sound in space, and on the performative possibilities of unusual spatial situations. Her works have been presented nationally and internationally, including at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, California; Serralves Museum, Porto; National Museum of Contemporary Art (Chiado), Lisbon; Kunstquartier Bethanien, Berlin; Kunstkraftwerk, Leipzig; Digital in Berlin's Kiezsalon series, Berlin; University of Gothenburg, Sweden; Wesleyan University, Connecticut; ausland, Berlin; Flutgraben, Berlin; and Bakelit, Budapest.

Work

Ventana (Día 35)
Film soundtrack · Collaboration with Ana Matey · 2020
Video: Ventana (Día 35)

Music for short film by Ana Matey. The film is one of a series that was undertaken from March 2020, as a response to the sudden change in circumstance caused by the coronavirus pandemic. Each day, for 51 days, a different video portrait was created by Ana Matey in front of the same window. Each film was then given to a different musician or sound artist to create an accompanying soundtrack. This was Day 35.

Carried Bells
Durational process · Installation · Collaboration with Tom O’Doherty · 2019
Video: Carried Bells at Hosek Contemporary, Berlin · Full details

Carried Bells is a process-based work, in which sounds and images of a series of twenty ringing bells were recorded in an urban environment. These recordings were then carried, on foot, in a repeating daily task, to a central installation, which added one recording each day over the course of the presentation of the work.

Carried Bells harvested traces from the city — exploring acoustic phenomena, social history, and the potential of public space. The incrementally-accumulating installation that emerged allows these individual recordings of particular bells to accrete and combine in unpredictable ways. The work aimed to bring the bells of the city out of the backgrounds of our attention, to recontextualise them, and to re-imagine them.

VROUW!
Sound · Collaborative improvisation ensemble · 2018–present
Video: VROUW! at Liberty Living Rooms, Berlin · Live photo 1 · Live photo 2 · Live photo 3 · Live photo 4 · SoundCloud

VROUW! is a five-piece, all-female experimental ensemble formed in Amsterdam and currently based in Berlin. VROUW! plays drums, cymbals, bass, contact mics, shoes, self-made synths, cards, hats, tin foil & plastic bags, bowls, beads, threads and endless other ever-changing amplified objects. VROUW! screams, sings, whispers and listens, riding the intricate waves of their ambient soundscapes.

VROUW! is Agnė Auželytė (keyboards, voice), Tristen Bakker (bass, noise box, voice), Kata Kovács (amplified objects, voice), Angela Muñoz (percussion, voice), and Lisa Simpson (talking hats and oscillations, voice).

Hvarfig Lera
Album · KvT · 2018
Website · Bandcamp

Mini-album by KvT. These sounds use simple, battery-powered equipment, allowing a singular focus on process-based tasks. These are exercises in shaping layered and ephemeral soundscapes from the overlapping churn of single simple elements — voice, resonance, repetition, movement, memory.

Signal Tide
Installation · Collaboration with Tom O’Doherty and David Bryant · 2017–present
Website · Sound mix (LACMA)

Signal Tide is a sound and extraterrestrial radio installation artwork. The work combines real-time signals from an abandoned satellite currently orbiting the earth (the LES-1, launched in 1965) with specially-commissioned music and sound, created in collaboration with David Bryant (of Godspeed You! Black Emperor and Hiss Tracts) and Tom O’Doherty. Signal Tide was initially presented at Los Angeles County Museum of Art, from September 21.–24., 2017.

A Practice of Falling
Sound performance · 2016

A Practice of Falling is a durational performance considering the implications of repetitive movement combined with sparse sound in large spaces.

Women Behind Drums
Performance · Collaboration with Zinzi Buchanan · 2016
Live photo 1 · Live photo 2

Women Behind Drums is a sound performance, a performative critique of male-dominated spaces and a ritualistic manifestation of a wish for more women behind drums.

Minute/Year
Durational installation · Collaboration with Tom O’Doherty · 2016–present
Minute/Year archive · Minute/Year full details

Minute/Year is an automated, sound-based, multi-year durational installation artwork. It creates a new, one-minute recording every day. Each day’s recording is published online. Minute/Year alters location each year. For the whole of 2020, the work is installed in bb15, in Linz, Austria. Minute/Year began on January 1st, 2016. It has no set ending date.

FAKE Company
Interdisciplinary performance · Collaborative group performances under direction of Kathleen Hermesdorf · 2016–present
Video: FAKE Company at Dock 11 · FAKE Company at Dock 11

FAKE Company is an international arrangement of performers, an intentionally fluid and flexible group. Gathered by Kathleen Hermesdorf of ALTERNATIVA in San Francisco, FAKE Company is a container and instigator for artistic freedom within creative collaboration, embedded and embodied in ongoing practices of improvisation in movement, theater, sound and visual art. FAKE Company has been presented in Berlin, Stolzenhagen and San Francisco.