Signal Path: Zoë Mc Pherson on mangling sound and visual collaboration

Signal Path is a series that delves into the creative process of artists at the cutting edge of electronic music and sound design.

In this episode, FACT travels to Berlin to meet Zoë Mc Pherson, a producer, sound designer, live performer and DJ whose new album States of Fugue is a thrilling collection of “fucked up rhythms” made from mangled audio and field recordings.

As well as creating music for adventurous dancefloors, Mc Pherson is a multimedia artist interested in bridging the worlds of sound and visual art. In 2018, she released an AV album, String Figures, created with frequent collaborator, visual artist and director Alessandra Leone.

States of Fugue also marks the first release for Mc Pherson and Leone’s new “hybrid label”, SFX, which has bold plans outside of releasing records including an open call for collaboration – a project called Xquisite Force.

Prior to the release of States of Fugue, FACT met up with Mc Pherson to find out how she found her unique sound, the future of audiovisual art, how she works in collaboration with Leone and more.


Producer: Scott Wilson
Director, editor and photographer: Pedro Küster
Soundtrack: Zoë Mc Pherson

Zoë Mc Pherson & Alessandra Leone 360° AV live courtesy of Uncloud
Filmed by Dave Mech and Alessandra Leone

Zoe Mc Pherson live video courtesy of Mutabor, Moscow
Filmed by Acoustic Treatment

‘Tenace’ video courtesy of artist
Director: Alessandra Leone⁣
Performance: Zoë Mc Pherson
DoP: Julian Moser⁣
Editing: Alessandra Leone
⁣Styling: Raki Fernandez⁣
⁣Hair and makeup: Samantha Pottmaier⁣
Colour grading: Valerio Liberatore (Mint)
Gaffer: Hendrik Kintscher⁣
Lighting Design Assistant: Nindya Nareswari
⁣Stills Photography: Dario Laganà

Thanks to:
Medienwerkstatt Berlin: bbk Kulturwerk/ Location
MimeCentrum: Studio2 / Location
Don Aretino: Wardrobe

String Figures videos courtesy of artist
Concept, artistic and music direction: Zoë Mc Pherson
Director and editor: Alessandra Leone
3D animation: Andreas Barden, Andreas Martini, Moritz Reichartz
Production: Silvia Procopio
Director of photography: Julian Moser
Focus Puller: Nils Koppenbrink
Costumes and accessories: Raki Fernandez, Benu Berlin, Siff Pristed 
Prop Designer: Terril Scott 
MuA: Nóra Belovai 
Hairstylist: Krisztiàn Berki 
Choreography: Hen 
Dancers: Hen, Ichi Go 
Colour grading: Lutz Forster 
Set photography: Dario Jacopo Laganà

Zoë Mc Pherson’s music can be purchased at Bandcamp.

Watch next: Artist DIY: Laima presents Anxiety, Home and Future