M.W. Burns is an audio artist using sound to conceptually activate space. Many of his installations
rely on tactics of public address, projecting the voice into existing urban conditions. Other projects integrate pre-recorded
sound into an environment, instigating the perception of events taking place. Burns has had solo exhibitions at the TBA
Exhibition Space, Chicago; Northern Illinois University Art Museum
; Tough, Chicago and the Lab
, San Francisco. His sound installations have been included in numerous group exhibitions, including the 2000 Whitney Biennial
at the Whitney Museum of American Art
, New York; Sound/Video/Film, the Donald Young Gallery
; Contextual: Art and Text in Chicago, at the Chicago Cultural Center
; Time Arts at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago
; The Body at the Renaissance Society
at the University of Chicago; and Takeover at the Hyde Park Art Center
. Other projects include Sound Canopy, a public sound system supporting audio work created to participate in the urban environment.
Selected Group Exhibitions and Events
2012 Spaces Gallery, The Vault "An Ear for Sounds" Cleveland OH,
exhibited audio-texts: "Articulations, "Drift" and "Observer"
2010 Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago "Hide and Seek".
Exhibited Messenger, (multi-channel sound
2009 Chicago Cultural Center, "The Outer Ear Festival",
Installed Countdown and Reactor (sound installations)
Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago "Takeover". Installed Audience,
(multi-channel sound installation).
2005 Chicago Cultural Center, Installed Clumbsy bus boy, (sound installation) at the building's North entrance.
Chicago Cultural Center, "Site Unseen". Installed Disclaimers, (a public
address) at the building's entrance.
2001 “Humid”, Miami, Fl.. Installed
Posing Phrases (pedestrian activated audio installation) in two locations at
the exhibit’s entrance.
2001 The Museum of Contemporary Photography,
Chicago “Audible Imagery”. Installed Posing Phrases on the exterior of
the Donald Young Gallery. (Pedestrian activated audio installation).
2001 Chicago Cultural Center,
"Con/textual". Installed Fountain, (multi-channel audio installation).
2000 Donald Young Gallery, "Sound/Video/Film" Chicago. Installed BIGMOUTH, (an outdoor sound installation).
2000 The Whitney Biennial, The
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York. Exhibited Conveyer, (a multi-channel audio
2000 Temporary Services, Chicago, Installed Apertures,
(a multi-channel piece installed in the building's stairwell) .
1999 Donald Young Gallery
Invitational, Chicago, Installed Run On ,2nd installment of Notes on Details of observations
made in transit , (a multi-channel audio installation).
1999 The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. Designed a series of untitled audio events
for "Trans23", a multidisciplinary art event.
1997 Tough Gallery, Chicago.
Exhibited Airborne Bodies Contact the Moshpit, (audio-text installation).
1996 The Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. Messenger,
(audio-text installation) for "Time Arts" exhibition.
Selected Solo Exhibitions and Projects
2004 Chicago Loop, Adams and State Streets. Sound
Canopy 2004, Conceived and organized a public audio art project, presenting international sound work designed
for the site. The work is presented over a 32 speaker sound system mounted inside an existing construction canopy. Project
duration: Jan. - April.
2002 Chicago Loop, Randolph and Wabash. Sound Canopy (Prototype), Conceived and organized a public audio art project, presenting five artist's
sound work, designed for the site. The work is presented
over a 32 speaker sound system mounted inside an existing construction
canopy. Project duration: May - Aug. .
2001 Gahlberg Gallery,
College of DuPage campus, Pedestrian Speed Monitoring and Posing Phrases.
1998 TBA Gallery, Chicago, Excerpts
from notes on details of observations made in transit . TBA mix (sound installation).
Tough Gallery, Chicago, Mediations (sound installation).
Northern Illinois University, Dekalb, Il., Exhibited Sinker (sound installation).
1995 Space Gallery, Chicago, Traverse (sound installation).
1994 The Lab, San Francisco, Wanderings. Exhibited
installations and photographs.
1994 N.A.M.E., Chicago, Wilderness. Exhibited Blip (sound installation).
MFA, Time Arts. -The School of the Art Institute of Chicago .
1989 BFA, Illustration/Graphics.-The
University of the Arts.