Ashley Fure is an American composer and installation artist. Her work explores the kinetic source of sound, bringing focus to the muscular act of music making and the chaotic behaviors of raw acoustic matter. Having completed her PhD in composition at Harvard University in 2013, Fure has had her work performed by The New York Philharmonic, The Los Angeles Philharmonic, Klangforum Wien, and more.
Fure’s compositional style has been described by The Rest Is Noise author Alex Ross as “fiercely bright,” likening her boundary pushing cacophony to the riotous spirit of Stravinsky in the early 20th century. Using extended techniques and electronic augmentation, Fure has gained much acclaim for impactful, stark ensemble works such as Soma and, most notably, her multisensorial The Force of Things: An Opera for Objects. A collaboration with architect Adam Fure, the piece considers the emotional impact of the ongoing climate crisis, and was described by The New York Times as “an immersive experience that is claustrophobic and viscerally fraught. Their central invention is the use of massive subwoofer speakers that emit frequencies too low to be audible to the human ear, yet strong enough to set abuzz every object and diaphragm in the room.” In 2017, she was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Bound To The Bow for Orchestra and Electronics, which was premiered at the New York Phil Biennial.
Blurring false binaries between formalism and conceptualism, abstraction and identity, onto-aesthetics and the social turn, Fure's work pursues a micropolitical materialism that manifests on multiple scales: from the casting of bodies, to the movement of audiences, to the internal structure of anarchic noise. Fure’s sound art practice stems from a fundamental belief that the sonic is social and the aesthetic is political.