Catherine Christer Hennix


Catherine Christer Hennix (b. 1948) started her creative career playing drums with her older brother Peter growing up in Sweden. In the mid-1960s she saw jazz luminaries such as John Coltrane, Eric Dolphy, Dexter Gordon, Archie Shepp, and Cecil Taylor perform at the Golden Circle, Stockholm. Directly after high school, Hennix went to work at Stockholm’s pioneering Elektronmusikstudion (EMS), where she helped develop early synthesizer and tape music.

After traveling to New York In 1968, she met Dick Higgins and Alison Knowles and developed a fruitful relationship with many composers in the burgeoning American avant-garde, including, most significantly, Henry Flynt and La Monte Young. Young introduced Hennix to Hindustani raga master Pandit Pran Nath, and she would later study intensively under him. During this time Hennix led the just-intonation live-electronic ensemble The Deontic Miracle, drawing inspiration from Japanese Gagaku music and the early vocal music of late-Middle Age composers Perotinus and Leoninus.

In 1976 the ensemble would perform Hennix’s original compositions as part of Brouwer’s Lattice at the Moderna Museet in Stockholm, which was followed later that year at the same institution by Hennix’s first ever exhibition, Topos and Adjoints. While Hennix continued to make music performing alongside Henry Flynt, Marc Johnson, Arthur Russell, and Arthur Rhames, she also served as a professor of Mathematics and Computer Science at SUNY New Paltz and as a visiting Professor of Logic (at Marvin Minsky’s invitation) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.

She currently resides in Berlin, Germany, where she is active as a composer and writer. A two-volume collection of her writing is to be published by Blank Forms Editions, as well as a series of archival recorded releases forthcoming through a co-production between Empty Editions and Blank Forms Editions.