Today from the DS Archives: Walter Kitundu

Today, From the DS Archives reintroduces you to Walter Kitundu, an artist with an extraordinary range and incredible energy. Kitundu continues to add to his repertoire—working in sound, photography, design and more—my new favorite being his bird blog.

This article was originally written by Arden Sherman on November 21st, 2008.

The cryptic sounds of hidden nature, wild animals, and native cultures are not only found in the numerous stacks at the Library of Congress or between the grooves of an exotica record. Artist Walter Kitundu utilizes these very sounds and ideas in his acute musical compositions. Sound artist, instrument maker, and composer, Kitundu finds a harmony between traditional musical forms, nature and sculpture. He has created an array of instruments including the Phonoharp, a multi-stringed instrument made from a record player, and the Ocean Edge Device, a life-size structure which utilizes wave motions to create a composition. These elements and Kitundu’s fascination with birds, geology, water, and air have led to various projects and installations throughout the United States and Europe.

The Bay Area artist is a 2008 recipient of the MacArthur Fellowship and is a current artist in residence atHeadlands Center for the Arts. Kitundu has collaborated widely with notable artists and musicians such asMatmos and Kronos Quartet and has been appointed the 2008 Wornick Visiting Distinguished Professor of Wood Arts at California College of the Arts.