In the summer of 2015, Maika, together with Chakky Kato en Senne Claes – all freshly graduated – is invited to participate in the annual theater festival “Theater aan Zee” in Ostend. The three of them decide to join forces, which marks the beginning of
“I always find it very rewarding to work together on something. You have your own practice and interests, which is great as a starting point, but I find it enriching to share this with others, maybe someone doing something completely different, you nev
The result is “Traces to Nowhere”, a composition later released as a flexidisk housed in a screen-printed sleeve: both music and cover left vulnerable to the same temporality characterizing the traces made on Ostend’s beach.
“Although I have to admit the music lasts longer than I expected. All three of us work with music in our individual practice, but at the same time the visual aspect remains very important for us.”
This attention to visual appearance testifies to a balance between functionality and aesthetics which Maika intensively explores with the self-made instruments she builds and plays:
“I’m still a visual artist, and form and aesthetics
The first experiments with instrument building took place during an exchange year spent in Genève:
“I had to submit a project to be accepted into the ceramics studio and knew I really wanted to incorporate sound into my sculpting pra
Maika started designing and creating instruments which explore precisely this physicality. An example is pulled out of a box for us to try out ourselves: a sort of horn of which the outer end points towards the player’s stomach. The indi
As such, Maika’s last creation made in Genève could hardly be more significant. It is an “updated” version of the horn, this time suited for two players.
Back in Antwerp, Maika quickly and fully devotes herself to instrument building:
“Nowadays I exclusively focus on these instruments. I really want to explore sound vibrations in relation to clay, and see how far you can go with this. I spend a
A sketchbook full of drawings and designs of multifarious instruments testifies to the extensive investigations preceding their actual creation. Yet despite this ever-increasing experience and knowledge, it would be a mistake to understand Maika’s prac
This element of surprise points to an ongoing dialogue between the artist and her material. Its amplification in performance invites us to eavesdrop upon the conversation. As such, the self-reflectiveness of her first instruments is definitively exchan
Cover photo credits: Rudi Caeyers. Illustration by Watcharita Aroon.