Pathways Projects relocated to the Tisbury Waterworks Sunday evening for a multimedia performance that brought together poetry, music and visual art to create an immersive audience experience.

Organizers estimated at least 90 people turned out to hear Martha’s Vineyard poet laureate Justen Ahren’s work titled, After the War for the Valley, with music by Dana Edelman, Nina Violet, Siren Mayhew and Mr. Ahren himself.

“It was more than I hoped,” Mr. Ahren said of the turnout, which overflowed the 19th-century brick waterworks’ small interior spaces. While many listeners lined the walls inside, others perched near outdoor loudspeakers to hear the words and music.

Dana Edelman helped score the event. — Timothy Johnson

Along with the musicians, electronic artist Graham Smith also collaborated on the piece with Mr. Ahren, creating animated photo-projections that played on walls both inside and outside the building. Working with a photograph by Mr. Ahren, Mr. Smith wrote custom software that varied the level of projected light based on the volume of sound coming through the performers’ microphones.

Mr. Ahren said the poetry in After the War for the Valley, written over the past three years, is his response to the ongoing refugee crises in different parts of the world. The idea arose while he was traveling through Italy to teach an annual writing workshop and found himself photographing ditches, river banks and railroad tracks along the Tiber Valley.

Old building provided perfect space for mulit-media event. — Timothy Johnson

“I’ve always been drawn to roads and derelict structures and buildings — these features in the landscapes we just look over,” he said. “A lot of my photos are taken right out the train window.”

Mr. Ahren came to realize that the valley of the Tiber River was not only a current route for refugees heading to Europe, but a historic path of flight for civilians during World War II, and, likely, much further back in history’s conflicts as well.

To evoke the flight of the displaced who must “flee violence or get through undiscovered,” Mr. Ahren said, the Tisbury Waterworks performance traveled, with its audience, through three distinct locations during the evening: a walled-in outdoor area and two interior rooms.

With its brick walls and imposing chimney, the waterworks is “the perfect space for this,” he said.

“I’ve already talked with Pathways about doing it again next year,” Mr. Ahren added.

And after that?

“I’d like to take it on the road,” he said, collaborating with artists in other cities by asking them the same question he posed to the musicians and Mr. Smith: “What is your response to these poems and these images?”