Petri Kuljuntausta is a composer, performer and sound artist. He is famous for music composed of sounds both natural and extraordinary. In close collaboration with natural scientists, he has composed an underwater installation from underwater materials and made music out of whale calls and the sounds of the northern lights. In many ways Kuljuntausta’s art is based on good knowledge of tradition; environmental sounds, live-electronics, improvisation and collaborations with media artists has influenced him as a composer.
His recent composition project Northern Lights LIVE, based on soundscapes of the northern lights and feedback sounds, was performed at the ISEA2004 festival, 12th Symposium on Electronic Arts. The work was a vivid collaboration between art and science, recycling original field recordings of the phenomena as well as processing aurora borealis sounds. A forty-five minute long continuous audio-visual dialogue between nature’s own soundscapes and their digitally altered, urban noise-art substitutes were created on stage.
Kuljuntausta has composed digital music for experimental films, visual art and dance projects, and made media and sound installations in museums, galleries and concert halls. His works has been performed in many European countries, Australia and the USA, and he has made recordings for various labels in Australia, England, Finland, France, Germany and the USA.
Kuljuntausta has collaborated with the experimental film director Sami van Ingen, urban architecture group Ocean-North, composers Morton Subotnick and Atau Tanaka, sound artist Richard Lerman and musician/philosopher David Rothenberg.
He is the author of an 800 page History of Finnish Electronic Music, On/Off, and in 2006 he published his second book, Äänen eXtreme (‘eXtreme Sound’, info), on his own approach to music. In 2005 he won an award, The Finnish State Prize for Art, from the Finnish government as a distinguished national artist.