3 Responses

  1. Muffin Williams 30 August 2013 at 5:36 am | | Reply


    This is really eye opening. You are shining the light of awareness on the creative process. You and the reader are co-creating in a sense as you have said here. The reader is free to interpret your words as they would wish.

    Wonderful food for thought!


  2. peter 1 September 2013 at 5:40 am | | Reply

    Your post reminded me of a nice statement by writer and art critic John Berger, about the different spatial relationships between visual artist, object, and drawing/painting in different cultures:

    “where are we, during the act of drawing, in spirit? Where are you at such moments – moments which add up to so many, one might think of them as another life-time? Each pictorial tradition offers a different answer to this query. For instance, the European tradition, since the Renaissance, places the model over there, the draughtsman here, and the paper somewhere in between, within arms reach of the draughtsman, who observes the model and notes down what he has observed on the paper in front of him. The Chinese tradition arranges things differently. Calligraphy, the trace of things, is behind the model and the draughtsman has to search for it, looking through the model. On his paper he then repeats the gestures he has seen calligraphically. For the Paleolithic shaman, drawing inside a cave, it was different again. The model and the drawing surface were in the same place, calling to the draughtsman to come and meet them, and then trace, with his hand on the rock, their presence.”

    (Source: page 123 of John Berger [2005]: Berger on Drawing. Edited by Jim Savage. Aghabullogue, Co. Cork, Eire: Occasional Press. Second Edition, 2007.)

    I sense that Cage thought himself working more in the tradition of Chinese calligraphy, seeking to elicit a trace of (deep, hidden) things through the actions of composing or performing the music, not viewing the resulting music as a representation of something. Like the action painters, this is music as verb, rather than as noun. I wonder if Feldman also thought this is what he was doing.

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