Florence Cats is a poet, visual artist, sound composer, performer and acupuncturist. Born in Vilvoorde (Belgium) in 1985, she is currently living and working where Brussels merges with the Sonian forest.
Florence Cats’ working process involves things about to appear or disappear, and echo one another : air, light, wind, tone, print, voice, water, color, dust, junk, rumor… She creates eclectic pieces related to travel, porosity, natural energies and celestial events. Each proposal is in tune to a context, a space, an environment.
Ys is a generous debut. Raw, courageous.
Sunken Cathedral is Florence interpreting Claude Debussy’s La Cathédrale Engloutie (trans. the Sunken Cathedral). The track reminds me of one of those fabled Charles Ives home recordings. Where he records himself on Speak-O-Phone - an old brand of recordable aluminium phonograph discs - while practicing and composing his music. But unlike Charles Ives treating these home recordings as personal sketches, Florence Cats shares her captured moments as compositions for the public.
Similar to the Speak-O-Phone recordings, we now meet the piano as a physical expression - not as an archetype. We are together with Florence in a room. The pedal. The keys. The hiss of the room. Learn, repeat.
Trough Florence’s hands and feet, La Cathédrale Engloutie is brought out of its pupa stage to become a presence. Instead of being grounded in luxurious concert halls or on high end recordings, the piece is now natural. Sunken Cathedral is a template, an affirmation for amateurs.
The piece was originally created for the group exhibition "Here Comes the Wave” at Project(ion) room, Brussels, February 2020.
In Fall Call, we find ourselves at QO2, a sound art initiative in Brussels. This piece was captured during a residency Florence took over the summer of 2022. We listen to the moment when a summer storm just washed the city.
Fall Call is a testament to Florence’s magical - humanistic way of playing her custom-made theremin. By pushing the controls of the instruments so high, her whole body starts to control the instrument - instead of just her hands. So when she walks around in the room, the instrument answers in full color.
And then, a phone-call. Giving it a bit of a Poulenc vibe.
For the last piece, Drop Out, we find ourselves in Florence’s apartment. When Florence opens the windows, the ambience of the surrounding Sonian Forest seeps in. This is an adorable moment. It predicts new beginnings. The smell of wet dirt and dripping leaves in the air. The poetry of rain.