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Miya Hannan (and collaborator Reiko Yamada)
ACC Individual Fellowship Application

Miya Hannan Work Samples

Click thumbnails for bigger images

1. Patria Soli (socially engaged art project) 

Patria Soli (homeland soil) is a socially engaged art project for people who are not able to go back to their homeland at the end of their life. This project delivers soil from one’s homeland to a person. For more information, please visit our project website at

2. Critical Mass (socially engaged art project commissioned by 2012 TEDxSanDiego, San Diego, CA) 
     Ceramics, paper; each figure 8" high; 2012

The 625 figures represent each person attending, speaking, or working at TEDxSanDiego 2012. Each figure was sculpted out of clay, textured, stamped with words, and glazed by the hands of many people, making each one completely unique. The installation of the figures was incomplete until each attendee brought a figure home with them at the end of the day, and used it as a starting point to share the day’s messages with their community.

3. The Story of the Sphenoid Bone 
     Ceramics, epoxy, bone ash, ash on paper; 12' x 32' x 22' (the size varies depending on space); 2017-18

This installation encompasses a story around Japanese cremation urns. I believe that every dead person, in some way, exists around us, as memories, stories, knowledge, and genetic codes, creating layers of rich histories that also enhance people’s lives. This exhibition is an exploration of changing visual forms as a metaphor for the changes of states in human existence.

4. Trapped Histories 
     Bone ash, epoxy resin, concrete, phone books, tree branches; approx. 20 x 20 x 15 feet; 2013

This installation derives from my understanding of the histories that are etched, trapped, and stratified in the soil of the Earth. In Japan, the souls of the dead live on, spirits exist within nature, and land retains its destiny—people inherit the histories of the land on which they live. I am interested in the relationship between humanity and the information trapped in nature.

5 - 12. Sample 2D and sculpture works from recent bodies of works 

Burning, which appears in many Japanese rituals including cremation, changes physical forms to the transient. The Law of Conservation of Mass states that mass may change forms but can neither be created nor destroyed; similarly, the dead stay with the living in the form of memory, story, knowledge, and genetic code. My work depicts my view of death as another form of being alive. 

Reiko Yamada Work Samples

13. Mask Your Sonic Story (for female singers and percussion ensemble)
experimental opera commissioned by the Lorelei Ensemble and the Boston Percussion Group, with the support of the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study; performance duration: ca. 60'; 2015-16

Rather than the explicit storyline of traditional operas, Mask Your Sonic Story offers its audience a collection of hints in the shape of words, onomatopoeia, movements, and costumes, which are left open to interpretation. Audience members can move freely around the set to follow certain characters during the performance, which allows them to hear the "secret song," prevents them from hearing the songs of others, and forces them to interpret what they see and hear through their individual subjectivity. As a result, Mask Your Sonic Story creates as many narratives as there are audience members.

14. Small Small Things (Music and installation for Humans and Drosophilae)
An interdisciplinary research project in collaboration with Dr. Robert Huber (Department of Biological Sciences, Bowling Green State University), Dr. Ronald Kühnlein (Institute of Molecular Biosciences, University of Graz, Austria) and Dr. Gregg Roman (Department of Biology, University of Mississippi); 2016-17

This is an interdisciplinary and artistic research project that emerged from a seven-month tenure as an artist-in-residence project at IEM (Institute for Electronic Music and Acoustics, University of Graz, Austria) in 2016-17. The products of this ongoing project so far are (1) performance/exhibition consisting in an orchestrated combination of site-specific acousmatic compositions and a digital slide presentation, (2) sound-art installation and (3) a series of sound experimentations with drosophila, each one of which allows the audience to explore surprisingly deep connections with drosophila. Three resulting works have been presented in Austria and the States.

15. Reflective (site-specific sound art installations)

Reflective is a series of site-specific sound art installations in which I explore the aesthetic concept of imperfection through interactivity. Affecting the composition through sensors (kinect, ultrasonic sensors and/or piezo microphones) that measure the movements of the body, each visitor creates a unique version of a multi-channel acousmatic composition. Through this interactive process, Reflective offers an intimate-scale reflection on the relationship between decisions, actions and consequences. 

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