by Grady Mitchell | “All threads together make a textile,” says Soledad Munoz. She’s talking both about her work as a textile artist and her new project, Genero Sound, the all-women electronic music label she founded this year. Right now, she says, the tapestry of music is incomplete – female musicians are vastly under-represented. With Genero, she hopes to fix that.
The idea first took shape as a series of shows Soledad organized at Sunset Terrace, a gallery and shared studio space in East Vancouver. Soon the idea evolved into releasing tapes. When Stefana Fratila, a local electronic artist, heard about Soledad’s plan she offered up her record as the first release. Since then Genero has recruited five more artists.
Genero is a word Soledad pulled from her native Spanish (although born in Canada, she grew up in Chile). In English it has many meanings, almost all of which seem to encapsulate a different facet of the project: genre, gender, textile and, in the verb form, “to generate.”
Right now, Genero focuses on music and sound art, but Soledad doesn’t want to narrow the future scope of the project. “In order for anything to resist representation, to be put into a box, we have to maintain fluidity,” she says. Genero’s primary goal is not necessarily to release music – that’s just the method Soledad has adopted right now – it’s to start conversations about feminism and equality. In the future that mission could take any number of forms. “I only have a question,” Soledad says. “I don’t have any answers.”
Genero is releasing two more tapes in August. Heavy Slave by the duo Minimal Violence dropped August 5, and Francesca Belcourt‘s Zongs goes public on August 22. For now, Soledad releases the albums as cassettes. They can also be heard online.
However people choose to listen, Soledad hopes Genero and its musicians will spark a conversation. “That’s what we try to do,” Soledad says. “Open, open, open.”
To take part in that conversation, visit GeneroSound.com.