Richard Lerman

FACULTY/ADMIN BLDG
FAB N-209
Professor
Faculty
WEST Campus
Mailcode
2151

Biography

Professor Lerman earned his B.F.A. with Honors in Music and an M.F.A. in film and theater arts, both at Brandeis University in Waltham, Mass. in 1966 and 1970, respectively. Before coming to ASU’s West campus in 1994, he held academic positions at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts School, M.I.T., and Tufts University where he taught experimental filmmaking, electronic music and performance art.

Professor Lerman says his creative activities have always engaged sound art and he has created work in this genre since the late 1960s through music composition, film/video, installation and performance art. Throughout his career he has been seeking and gathering sounds, to create work that may weave through nature in notable landscapes or at sites that pertain to human rights issues.  His recent work has engaged climate change with several trips to record audio/video north of the Arctic Circle in Finland, Norway, Russia and Sweden.  

He has worked with piezo disks and other transducers since the 1970’s, building his own microphones and associated electronics. He is well-known for using these materials in his work and sharing aspects of this work on his websites. Sound Generation named him "the internet father of the piezo disk" in 2013.

In 2004, he developed a course called Art and War. Since then he has researched how artists the world over have developed art that deals with war. Other courses include Media and Diversity focusing on global cinema, Utopia/Dystopia exploring science fiction through novels by five female authors, and Documentaries, surveying work in film, video, radio, installation and writing.

Among Professor Lerman’s projects include “From the Aleutian Islands” (recordings made at the site of the Aleut internment during World War II) and “Trinity Site” (recordings made at the site where the first atomic bomb was detonated) for Radia, the European Art Radio Consortium. His “Hoover: Water | Power” is installed at the ASU Art Museum for their exhibition on Sustainability from Oct 2009 – Feb 2010.  Recent 3-channel video installations (2015 and 2016) include Arctic Transitions:  in the age of Carbon, made at the Kilpisjarvi Biological Research Station in the NW of Finalnd, and the Danube, Vineyards and Carbon Fiber Rods made at a 3-month residency in Krems, Austria.

His piece “Travelon Gamelon, (1978) for amplified bicycles has been performed worldwide many times, most recently at the FKL Symposium in Cagliari, Sardiniam Sept 2017.  Both the Promenade and Concert Versions have been releasead on LP and CD by Folkways/Smithsonian and EM Records, Osaka, Japan  Currently, he is continuing to develop an ad-free video streaming site, SonicJourneys, in tandem with telvue.com.

Education

  • M.F.A. Film and Theater Arts, Brandeis University 1970
  • B.F.A. Music (Honors), Brandeis University 1966 

Research Interests

For 40+ years, I have worked with piezo electric materials and devices to make self-built transducers/microphones/speakers to record and present my work.  You may find articles, diagrams and schematics for this work at my websites below.  Recently,  I have been using carbon fiber rods to record environmental sound.  In tandem with piezo disks, I have been able to record the sounds of ice melting and forming in work donw north of the Arctic Circle. 

Please see websites at: www.west.asu.edu/rlerman or sonicjourneys.com

Publications

  • Richard Lerman. The Danube, Vineyards and Carbon Fiber Rods. (2014).
  • Richard Lerman. Walrus haul, Kolyuchin Island. (2014).
  • Many-see below. Richard Lerman. Sound Generation, an eBook (2013).
  • Achim Kaemper. KlangWelten-Spezial: 200ste Sendung!!! 10 Stunden mit Gästen! (SoundWorld Special: 200th Broadcast!!! 10 houros with Guests. (2013).
  • Nancy Dallett, assistant director of ASU’s Public History Program-School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies and Ryan Erfurth, Graduate Student. "Detention: Japanese Internment to Enemy Combatants" part of the Guantánamo Public Memory Project @ Phoenix Public Library. (2013).
  • Richard Lerman. An Oracle Reading in Minji, Bhutan - recorded by me in Minji, Bhutan in 2000 and re-edited in 2012/2013. The letter of rejection is to the right in Addl. Info and I have slightly edited this because I can only enter 1000 characters. I have included a direct link to this video at the web address below - and yes, I need to change the copyright date on the video itself. (2013).
  • Richard Lerman. Thoughts on Alvin Lucier and Performance. Leonardo Music Journal (2012).
  • many...I did not contribute an essay but created a music score using the geography and mapping of the harbor at Split, Croatia (where I performed in 1979). "From the Harbor at Split". "Nova nepoznata glazba: Svecani zbornik za Nikšu Gliga / New Unknown Music: Essays in Honour of Nikša Gligo" (2012).
  • All presented work by Richard Lerman. 1. "From the Logan," two sound installations for the opening of the Logan Art Center, 2. "Sonic Environments," A Screening of Film/Video work and Performances, Film Study Center, 3. "Travelon Gamelon," concert and Promenade versions, for amplified bicycles,. (2012).
  • Richard Lerman. "30 Years of Travelon Gamelon". (2012).
  • Richard Lerman. Death Valley Cycle. (2012).
  • Richard Lerman. Performances, Richard Lerman and others: Travelon Gamelon, concert Version; Sections for Screen Performers and Audience; and "Old Objects, New Music with an Interlude for Solar Cell". (2012).
  • Richard Lerman. Travelon Gamelon, Promenade and Concert Versions. (2012).
  • Richard Lerman, Achim Kaempfer and others. Performance. (2012).
  • Richard Lerman, Camera, editing. "Galapagos Transducer Series" (aka, From the Galapagos). (2012).
  • Richard Lerman, video and performance. "Border Soundings". (2012).
  • Peter Rose. The Sound Art of Richard Lerman. (2011).
  • Richard Lerman. "How to Get Started", by John Cage. (2011).
  • Richard Lerman. Afternoon event: Travelon Gamelon, Promenade Version Evening Event: Travelon Gamelon, Concert version; Sonoran Desert Pieces, Death Valley Cycle; New Music, Old Instruments, with an Interlude for Fukushima (premiere). (2011).
  • Richard Lerman. Performance and Video work: The Border Now; Sonoran Desert Pieces; Music for Plinky, Bicycle and Straw. (2011).
  • Richard Lerman. Travelon Gamelon, Promenade Version. (2011).
  • Richard Lerman, Sound Artist. Breaking the Sound Barrier: curator: Prof. Valerie Brodar. (2011).
  • Arthur Sabbatini, Patrick Bixby. The Bowler Hat Project. (2010).
  • Richard Lerman. A Brief Look at Crossing the Border. (2010).
  • Richard Lerman. Death Valley Cycle 2. (2010).
  • Richard Lerman. My last cartridges of super 8 film. (2010).
  • Richard Lerman. Hoover: Water | Power. (2009).
  • Richard Lerman. Hoover: Water | Power. (2009).
  • Richard Lerman. Sections for Screen, Performers and Audience. (2009).
  • Richard Lerman. Travelon Gamelon, Concert and Promenade versions for amplified bicycles. (2009).
  • Richard Lerman with "Crossing 32nd Street" (a Valley-based contemporary music ensemble). Sections for Screen, Performers and Audience. (2009).
  • Richard Lerman, Solo concert in conjunction with a performance event by Susie Kozawa. Richard Lerman The Chapel Performance Space, Seattle July 25, 2009. (2009).
  • Richard Lerman. 1. From the Aleutian Islands (recordings made at site of the Aleut Internment during WW2) 2. Trinity Site (recordings made at the site where the first atomic bomb was detonated). (2008).
  • Richard Lerman. Travelon Gamelon, for amplified bicycles: Promenade and Concert Versions. (2008).
  • Steve Weiss, film programmer. Site and Sound: The Experimental Works of Richard Lerman. (2008).
  • Three works of Richard Lerman. 1. Half Lives, Nuclear Waste 2 (performance version, 2008) - premiere 2. SonicJourneys 2 (Two channel video performance) - premiere 3. Travelon Gamelon for amplified bicycles (1978). (2008).
  • Richard Lerman. A Sony Walkman Pro Cassette Delay. Leonardo Music Journal (2007).
  • Lerman, Richard. Fences/Borders-Alga/Aqua. (2007).
  • Lerman, Richard. Fences/Borders-Alga/Aqua - Sound Installation. (2007).
  • Lerman, Richard. Half Lives-Nuclear Waste - An Installation w/ Sound and Video. (2007).
  • Lerman, Richard. Music for Plinky, Bicycle and Straw. (2007).
  • Lerman, Richard. Music of Richard Lerman. (2006).

Courses

Spring 2019
Course Number Course Title
IAP 407 Utopia/Dystopia:Sci Fi & Media
WST 407 Utopia/Dystopia:Sci Fi & Media
IAP 464 Media and Diversity
HON 494 Special Topics
MAS 598 Special Topics
Fall 2018
Course Number Course Title
IAP 307 Art and War
IAP 364 Documentaries
MAS 580 Practicum
MAS 585 Capstone Course
Summer 2018
Course Number Course Title
LSC 394 Special Topics
IAP 394 Special Topics
ENV 394 Special Topics
ART 592 Research
Spring 2018
Course Number Course Title
IAP 325 Sound Perf: Exploring Alt Perf
IAP 464 Media and Diversity
MAS 592 Research
MAS 598 Special Topics
Fall 2017
Course Number Course Title
IAP 307 Art and War
WST 407 Utopia/Dystopia:Sci Fi & Media
IAP 407 Utopia/Dystopia:Sci Fi & Media
MAS 592 Research
Spring 2017
Course Number Course Title
IAP 364 Documentaries
IAP 464 Media and Diversity
MAS 598 Special Topics
Fall 2016
Course Number Course Title
IAP 307 Art and War
IAP 363 Sound, Image, and Media
Spring 2016
Course Number Course Title
IAP 325 Sound Perf: Exploring Alt Perf
IAP 464 Media and Diversity
Fall 2015
Course Number Course Title
IAP 307 Art and War
IAP 394 Special Topics
HON 394 Special Topics

Presentations

  • Richard Lerman. Thoughts on Alvin Lucier and Performance. Alvin Lucier: A Celebration - Wesleyan University (Nov 2011).
  • Lerman, Richard. Border Fence - Alg-a/Aqua. Fronte(i)ras07 (May 2007).
  • Lerman, Richard. Working with Piezo Transducers. Lecture/Presentation at CMMAS (Mar 2007).
  • Lerman, Richard. In Crim i Nation. Half Lives-Nuclear Waste

Service

  • Personnel Committee, New College, Member (2010 - Present)
  • Authored a second website at http://www.sonicjourneys.com, Presentation of my audio, music, performance and media along with guidance on techniques I have developed to record audio. I answer many emails about this subject during the year. (2007 - Present)
  • Authored a website at http://www.west.asu.edu/rlerman, Technical/Artistic Guidance. Presentation of my audio, music, performance and media along with guidance on techniques I have developed to record audio. I answer many emails about this subject during the year. (1999 - Present)
  • Authored Websites http://sonicjourneys.com and at http://www.west.asu.edu/rlerman, Author, Creator (2013 - 2013)
  • Authored Websites http://sonicjourneys.com and at http://www.west.asu.edu/rlerman, Author, Creator (2012 - 2012)
  • Authored Websites http://sonicjourneys.com and at http://www.west.asu.edu/rlerman, Author, Creator (2011 - 2012)
  • Tenure Committee, Chair (2011 - 2011)
  • Tenure Committee, Member (2011 - 2011)
  • HArCS. In Spring, 2011 I organized three events for visiting artists, each of whom was an IAP alum., Lead (2011 - 2011)
  • Authored Websites http://sonicjourneys.com and at http://www.west.asu.edu/rlerman, Author, Creator (2010 - 2010)
  • Documentary Study Committee - not sure of title of committee, Member, asked by Duku Anokye (2010 - 2010)
  • Veteran's Committee, Member (2010 - 2010)
  • ASU Art Museum, Artist and Lecturer (2009 - 2010)
  • Authored a website at http://sonicjourneys.com, Author (2009 - 2009)
  • University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, (2008 - 2008)
  • Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL, External Reviewer (2008 - 2008)
  • University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, Department Review for the Visual and Performing Arts Area (2007 - 2007)