June 21, 1973 at dawn in New York's Central Park. Charlie Morrow and Carol Weber found themselves performing before cameras from major TV networks and became a cultural news item celebrating the start of summer.
In 1974, Carol Weber and Charlie Morrow formed the New Wilderness Preservation Band with composer performers Joan La Barbara, Bruce Ditmas, Harvie Schwarz, and the Reverend Paul Abels. who provided a home venue at Washington Square Methodist Church.
For almost two years, NWPB gave a series of designed event concerts with diverse guest artists: poets, dancers, native Americans. From this grew public events, publications, broadcasts, festivals and especially the love of the summer solstice. They were characterized by strong performance art elements and conceptual design by the participating artists. These event concerts stimulated a wide range of activities and developed a community of artists who would participate a wide range of activities.
Charlie Morrow produced and conceived these projects. Mary Nell Hawk, working in Charlie Morrow's production office then at 365 West End Ave, was the coordinator and art director.
The New Wilderness Foundation, Inc. a 501(c)3 was founded in 1974 by Jerome Rothenberg and Charlie Morrow as an arts organization with the mission of New/Old Explorations of Sound and Oral Poetry. NWF provided the structure to publish, produce, present, promote and administer.
This circle of activity began in formally as Morrow recorded the eventual New Wilderness artists like Rothenberg and Mac Low in his studio. The lack of suitable venues for electro acoustic performances led to forming an event series, starting the New Wilderness Pres. Band, making promotions, broadcasts and audio publications. In the early course of this EAR Magazine hooked into NWF via RIP Hayman.
NWF incubated startups around new concepts which would be continued by dedicated organizations. NWF grew out of ethnopoetics and performance arts: a blend of experimental and traditional arts espousing a "new wilderness", a source of perpetual renewal and new ideas. The conceptually designed art events mixed new and old technologies. NWF used electronic media to broadcast, record and promote the cross disciplinary mix of arts and artists.
New Wilderness Foundation activities expanded from events and broadcasts to include Ear Magazine, New Wilderness Letter: Journal of Poetry, Audiographics Artist Cassettes, concerts, the Ocarina Orchestra, the Grand Conch Chorus, the Wind Band, and Artists Access Audio Studio.
NWF moved to offices on Spring Street in 1979 (?) where it remained until the 90s.
NWF is currently administered by Charlie Morrow from the offices of
Morrow maintains an archive of New Wilderness products, projects, artifacts and business records in Barton, VT on the former Dick Higgins land NWF seeks to place this archive with an institution interested in its artists and concepts.