Paul Wirkus, born 1967, lives and works in Cologne, Germany. Composer and performer.
Since the late 90s Wirkus has emerged both as a solo performer (electronics, percussion) and with several projects ranging from minimal electronica to modern composition. Apart from solo releases such as "Inteletto d'Amore" and "Déformation professionnelle" Wirkus has collaborated live and on CD with musicians of various musical backgrounds, e.g. Ekkehard Ehlers, Stefan Schneider (To Rococo Rot). Paul Wirkus has appeared at various renowned festivals such as Sonar, Barcelona; Wien Modern, Vienna; Musiques Volantes, Paris; c/o pop, Cologne; Les Urbaines, Lausanne; Unsound, New York.
His releases have been well received in magazines like The Wire, Pitchfork, and his solo album "Inteletto d'Amore" was CD of the month in The Wire in March 2004. His recent collaboration with Ekkehard Ehlers resulted in the album "Ballads" that was released by Staubgold in early 2009. This album was CD of the month in The Wire in April 2009.
Furthermore, Wirkus has been expanding his musical activities into multidisciplinary projects in recent years. As a result, he performed many times at Parma's Natura Dèi Teatri Performing Arts Festival. Provided musical accompaniment for the readings of Polish writer Andrzej Stasiuk (Suhrkamp). He has also created a radio play for Czech Radio in Prague and sound installation for the art exhibition "Gone to Croatan" in Dortmund. Performed at Zero 'n' One Composing in the Digital Age at Akademie der Künste, Berlin. He composed music for theatre for the Schauspielhaus Duesseldorf. Performed commissioned composition at Rilke in Ragaz - Paul Good Philosophie Symposium in Bad Ragaz, Switzerland. He was an artist in residence at the International Centre for Dance and Movement Art in Potsdam. Paul Wirkus’ previous musical history includes performances with Polish punk group Karcer and late 90s post-rock group Mapa.
"Wirkus is no cutting edge iconoclast - more significantly, he is a serious musican deserving wider attention" - The Wire
"Eloquent statement about the relationship between the electronic and the human" - The Wire
"Wirkus has some sort of weird gift that'll likely become more apparent over time" - Pitchforkmedia.com
"Possesses a natural ear and a disciplined sense of structure" - Pitchforkmedia.com
"Fascinating work" - BBC Online
"A shapeshifting amalgam of raw improv and coked samples kicks the digital versus analogue debate into touch" - David Toop, The Wire
Photo © Francesco Pititto