Thursday, 28 May 2009

Tony Conrad's substratum of interests

Tony Conrad is the maestro of "extended duration as a conceptual armature", a musician, filmmaker and media-theorist of pioneering stature. He established the monochrome flicker as one of the central tropes in moving image, and created entirely distinctive forms of drone music both within, and outside of, The Dream Syndicate. In later works, such as Slapping Pythagoras his theoretical positions on Western cultural discourse became more evident.

stimulating and rich discussion between Conrad and fellow musician, David Grubbs, explores Conrad's views on physics:

"modern physics [has] been generated as a branch of music",


"Something that intrigues me a lot – and which I still haven’t decided about – is the suggestion that music should not have audiences. Just to get the audience out of the picture entirely seems like an interesting challenge, because every time I tell myself that the audience is why I’m doing everything [....] Every time I find myself thinking that, I realize that I’m barking up the wrong tree, and that if I try to head in the opposite direction, there’s something like a multifarious void out there."

and the future:

"For me, there’s another project, and that is to begin to try to create a structure of laws that can address the needs of 2010. From Futurism to Dogme, manifesto-like conditions can be productive [...] There’s a kind of cultural convergence that’s taking place that brings all these things together. I don’t think that’s unproductive. It reflects the conceptual initiative that was apparent last century with Happenings and all kind of things, basically going back to the Futurists. The Futurists actually predicted the future."

A must-read.


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