Janek Schaefer

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Janek Schaefer

Janek Schaefer is a London-based sound artist, composer and entertainer. He is known for his work with sound and installation art.

Life and career[edit]

Schaefer was born in 1970 in England to Polish and Canadian parents.[citation needed][1] While studying architecture at the Royal College of Art, Schaefer recorded the fragmented noises of a sound activated dictaphone travelling overnight through the Post Office.[citation needed][1] That work, titled 'Recorded Delivery' 1995 was made for the 'Self Storage' exhibition Time Out critics choice with one time postman Brian Eno and Artangel.[citation needed][1] The 'Tri-phonic Turntable'[2] (1997) is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the 'World's Most Versatile Record Player'. He has performed, lectured and exhibited widely throughout Europe Sonar, Tate Modern, ICA, USA/Canada, The Walker, XI, Mutek, Princeton, Japan, and the Sydney Opera House.[citation needed][1]

His CD Above Buildings (2000) was released on Fat Cat.[citation needed][3] He has played in duos and released albums with Philip Jeck (Songs for Europe CD), Robert Hampson (Comae CD), Stephan Mathieu (Hidden Name CD) and Charlemagne Palestine (Day of the Demons LP).[citation needed][4] He lives and works at the audiOh! Room in Walton-on-Thames in Surrey, with his wife and two children.[citation needed]

He is Visiting Professor at the Sonic Art Research Unit (Oxford Brookes University).[citation needed][1]

In 2009/10 the Bluecoat gallery in Liverpool mounted a retrospective exhibition of his 20-year career to date.[5]


Schaefer on the beach, 2016

In 2008, Schaefer won The British Composer of The Year Award for Sonic Art for his project Extended Play Triptych for the child survivors of war and conflict.[6] The same year he won The Paul Hamlyn Award for Composers Prize. He was the 'McKnight Composer in Residence' for the American Composers Forum, USA 2002/3. In 2004 his Random Playing LP called 'Skate' received the 'Award of Distinction' at the Prix Ars Electronica, Austria.[7]


Schaefer has released 34 albums, and runs his own label audiOh! Recordings.[8]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Biography". Janek Schaefer's official site. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  2. ^ Richardson, Mark. "Biography: Janek Schaefer". AMG. Retrieved 17 May 2010.
  3. ^ "Janek Schaefer – Above Buildings". Discogs. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  4. ^ "Janek Schaefer - Discography". Discogs. Retrieved 9 October 2019.
  5. ^ shane.phillips@splinter.co.uk, Shane Phillips. "the Bluecoat >> Janek Schaefer : Sound Art". www.thebluecoat.org.uk. Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  6. ^ British Composer of the Year Awards 2003 - Present Archived 27 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "Ars Electronica Archive". Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  8. ^ "Janek Schaefer". Discogs. Retrieved 2 November 2018.

External links[edit]