Since 1968, Bernie Krause has traveled the world recording and archiving the sounds of creatures and environments large and small. Working at the research sites of Jane Goodall (Tanzania), Biruté Galdikas (Borneo), and Dian Fossey (Rwanda), he identified the concepts of the Acoustic Niche Hypothesis (ANH), and biophony the collective and organized acoustic output as each species establishes unique frequency and/or temporal bandwidth within a given habitat. Krause is also a founder of the new ecological discipline, soundscape ecology. In the world of fine art, Krause has produced over 50 natural soundscape CDs and designed interactive, non-repetitive environmental sound sculptures for museums and other public spaces worldwide.
With his late music partner, Paul Beaver, he helped introduce the Moog synthesizer to pop music and film on the West Coast in the mid-1960s. Aside from their own charted recordings, the team’s work can be heard on over 250 albums, including those of Mick Jagger, Van Morrison, Peter Gabriel, Brian Eno and David Byrne, George Harrison, the Doors.
Krause, who holds a PhD in Creative Arts, was a key figure in implementing natural soundscapes as a resource for the U. S. National Park Service. In 2012 he published The Great Animal Orchestra: Finding the Origins of Music in the World’s Wild Places (Little Brown/Hachette). In 2014, the Cheltenham Music Festival premiered a symphony by Krause and Richard Blackford based on the book. It is the first live performance piece to incorporate natural soundscapes as a component of the orchestration. In 2015, Biophony, a music score composed entirely of natural sounds, was commissioned, choreographed and premiered by the Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet in San Francisco. In September, 2021, his book, The Power of Tranquility in a Very Noisy World, will be published by LittleBrown/Hachette. His art and science exhibition, Le Grand Orchestre des Animaux, commissioned by Fondation Cartier pour l’Art Contemporain in Paris, opened 1 July 2016. The piece has since been exhibited at the Seoul Museum of Art in S. Korea, Shanghai, China, and opened MoMA’s (NY) Triennale in Milan, in 2019.
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