Natural Tones: The Music of The Revenant

18.02.2016 - Carsten Nicolai, moderated by Milena Fessmann

In his sound-driven work, Berlin-based artist and composer Carsten Nicolai seeks to overcome a separation of art forms and genres, looking for symbioses between disciplines. Influenced by scientific reference systems, Nicolai often engages mathematic patterns such as grids and codes. A long-time collaborator of Ryuichi Sakamoto, Nicolai (under the pseudonym alva noto) recently composed with Sakamoto the score of Alejandro G. Iñárritu's The Revenant. Nicolai embarks on a sonic journey into the nature of his collaboration with Sakamoto and others. Presenting excerpts from his compositions and audio works, he goes back to the foundations of his practice and shows how seemingly distinct media and genres can be synthesized to striking effect.


Carsten Nicolai

photo of Carsten Nicolai
German artist and musician under the pseudonym Alva Noto. He is co-founder of the label Raster-noton, and his musical projects include collaborations with Ryuichi Sakamoto, Ryoji Ikeda (cyclo), Blixa Bargeld and Mika Vainio. He performed at the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Centre Pompidou in Paris and Tate Modern in London. Most recently Nicolai scored the music for Alejandro González Iñárritu’s newest film THE REVENANT. His visual art has featured in important international exhibitions like documenta and the Venice Biennale, as well as in extensive solo and group exhibitions around the world.

Moderated by

Milena Fessmann

photo of Milena Fessmann

Milena Fessmann has worked as a full-time DJ since 1991. She has had her own long-running shows on Berlin’s Radio Eins since 2001 - first “After-Work Lounge” and, more recently, “Free Falling”. She has moderated numerous events and panels, and teaches music supervising and copyright clearance at the DFFB film school in Berlin. She is the CEO of the film production company Sugar Town and is currently producing the documentary THE POTENTIAL OF NOISE - CONNY PLANK.