Jesse Perlstein (1985 - ) is a multi-disciplinary artist born and based out of New York City. He has spent the last decade creating cross-genre works that often blend the mediums of sound, visual art, prose & room installations, focusing on the confluence between fantasy and reality and exploring their inseparable tangle. This ‘tangle’ is best expressed when centered on the idea of memory, an act of fictionalization. After a moment passes it ceases to exist and resurrection can only be done through imagination—the basic tenant of original, unaided fabrication. This illusory reconstructed moment is born of manipulation and contrivance albeit subconscious, which begs the question: how constructed is the past?
The surrealism of nostalgia and memory is prominently explored in Jesse’s audio work. He is a self-professed collector of moments, or an etcher of the shadows left as they pass. Through the practice of field recording he captures and repurposes temporal ambience for compositions that include vocal accompaniment and sonic manipulation, creating surreal auditory soundscapes. These sonic tapestries are designed to be immersive and nostalgic and have been featured and composed for film, room installations, dances, performance, and in his recorded music spanning over several different projects and collaborations. Most recently, Jesse has been studying the way in which sound can be planted in rooms or spaces, composing pieces that are meant for a specific time and place, providing specific context and a method of physical immersion for the listener/audience.
His most prominent and acclaimed musical project to date is Sontag Shogun, an experimental trio, where he uses sound collage and treated vocals to harmonize with piano (Ian Temple), piezo’d beats and oscillator tones (Jeremy Young). This active group releases music on several labels, tours the globe and is often writing/recording new music for commissioned work and forthcoming releases.
Jesse has held a performance/curation residency in Seoul, which led to a curated live-scored film series (VOVO) that originated in Seoul but later implemented in Brooklyn. He is also the cofounder of an emerging Chinese(-American) musician showcase called Da-Yin which he produced with fellow sound artist, Xuan Ye.
For booking inquiries, commissions or collaborations,
email Jesse: robotsarebetter[at]gmail.com