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Pacific Waters – Main Gallery

June 24, 2023 @ 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm PDT

Pacific Waters

Mary Frisbee Johnson

w/ Oregon State University Student Composers

June 8 – July 22, 2023

Reception: Thursday, June 15, 2023

5:30 – 7:00 PM

Exhibition Details

The Pacific Waters exhibition features a collection of indigo ink drawings by Mary Frisbee Johnson. Through her work Johnson explores how water changes depending on light, weather, time and tide, and with her mark making she embraces the myriad of sounds water can make: gurgle, chitter, roar, stream, crash, bubble, hiss, murmur.

As an extension of this exhibition, Oregon State University music students were invited to compose original compositions in response to Johnson’s visual art. Gallery visitors are encouraged to choose a piece of music top listen to vis headphones before entering the gallery. How does the music you chose influence your experience of the visual art around you?

Music for Pacific Waters was contributed by the following composers: Adam Banks, Kaitlyn Barrett, Mackenzie Bjonstedt, Zach Elms, Sage Jarvie, Connor Mckay, Erin Mendelson, Gage Mergel, Dana Reason, Cooper Reynolds, Tak Yeung Shum. Music is available in gallery via QR Code or one of TAC’s MP3 players, which can be checked out at the front desk.

Oregon State University Music

Students in the MUS 443 Composition Course Winter 2023,  taught by Assistant Professor Dana Reason, were invited to compose original string music inspired by the guest talk by visual artist Mary Frisbee Johnson for her forthcoming Pacific Waters exhibition at The Art Center. For many students, this was the very first time composing for string instruments as well as responding to a visual artist. 

Students were delighted to think about the ways they could write for strings or expand to include orchestral instruments as a response or reaction to the work of Johnson. Due to advances in music technology, students were able to write their music on computers, as well as hear a version of their pieces realized by computer software. What you will experience is a beautiful range of creativity, influences, and responses by our students. This was truly a collaboration between visuals and music.


June 24, 2023
12:00 pm - 5:00 pm PDT