Saturday, October 29, 2011

The Long View

Perhaps the future is present at times before we take notice of it.

My wife and I enjoyed the rare good fortune of the opportunity to attend Brian Eno's Illustrated Talk this afternoon at the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium in Asheville, N.C., USA. A great pleasure and an elevating experience, both for Mr. Eno's wit and his grace in delivering an artistic and scholarly presentation of ideas and concepts of genuinely profound cultural importance, it was also the finest example of public speaking I have ever seen, having been privileged in the past to attend talks by, among others, Carl Sagan and Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Anyone given the chance to see the Illustrated Talk should not miss it, particularly if you embrace a love for the future of music and the cultural arts.

Friday, October 28, 2011

The Bob Moog Memorial Foundation / Moogfest

Moogfest 2011 will be held in Asheville, North Carolina, USA this weekend.

Tangerine Dream, Adrian Belew, Hans-Joachim Roedelius, Tim Heckler, Moby, and many other featured artists will be present over three days.  Perhaps I will see you there.

Brian Eno will present his ILLUSTRATED TALK at 1.30pm, Saturday October 29 at the
Thomas Wolfe Auditorium, Asheville Civic Center, 87 Haywood Street, Asheville, NC 28801

77 MILLION PAINTINGS (28 October to 30 November)
YMI Center, 39 South Market Street, Asheville, NC 28801

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Hour and Moment

Art answers the question, "What is your experience?".

Those to whom art communicates consider the answers.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Unspoken, Understood

In the absence of a direct narrative, atmosphere and tone communicate a sense of meaning.

A work need not be content-specific to offer such things as refinement of perspective and nuance of mood.  In fact, these may be made more apparent without the association of direct exposition. 

In poetry and literature, a character description or sketch of a time and place alone may entertain and inspire insights, while music, painting and sculpture need not reference a specific account of an  imaginative tale or historical event to evoke feelings and ideas in those who encounter the works.

Consider the sounds of seasonal change, of the rise and descent of cultural phenomena, or posit those suggested by light in landscapes or the movement of time through generations.  Intuit and put forward tones and musical textures that bring these into being, and though they are nebulous, they reveal worlds within worlds.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Direct Experience

The appearances of things are multidimensional.

One does not gain an estimate of an individual's character by looking at appearance alone.  That is an absurdity.  Neither is it of any value to accept or reject works of art, from the classical to the the avant-garde, by mere surface impression.  An interpretation offered by someone else is not an informed personal judgement, and an "open mind" is no substitute for a critical eye or ear. 

This is the value of self-knowledge as well.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Fields of Perception

Fragmentation, fractured awareness, spatial and temporal dislocation, sub-textual meaning, and the idea of word and image propagating as viral constructs have provoked debate for a century or more.

That these concepts are influential in cultural consciousness is beyond doubt, particularly in the arts.  Setting aside the often trivial disputes associated with analysis of these cultural and social phenomena, there is much aesthetic pleasure to be found in the happenstance encounter with surprising justapositions of sensory imagery, particularly those sounds and images which are often ignored as unintentional or as mere by-products of the environment.

The interested observer might consider this an opportunity for an artist to be less obtrusive in the creation of works of art.  Not absent, certainly, but mindful of the nature of the inspiration.

Sunday, October 23, 2011


Depth, distance, clarity, obscurity, reflection, texture, intensity, proximity, color, tone, and meaning.

Within human and natural settings-- the perceived subjective experience of environment and atmosphere, with its associated emotional and intellectual connotations--  these measurements, among others, serve as intuitive guides to our journey, our movements, and our actions.

If the senses are reliable and the chosen courses of action true, the journey is graced with integrity, balance, spirit and reason, especially in adversity.  If life is torn by contradictions, driven and dominated by the passions and appetites, perhaps some good will come of it, but whatever measures may determine that are vague at best.

Culture is ever in flux, ever subject to events and ideas, some meritorious, some ruinous.

Look and listen.  Choose with care.  The foremost of these measures is meaning.