ICMC Computer-music festival in Hong Kong.
GLASS [8m08s] 1996
The French surrealist literary movement ‘ecriture automatique’ expressed the inner essence of objects in relation to our association with them; writing in a stream of conciousness. This piece was composed in a similar style, to depict the essence of glass. I envisaged glass from many different perspectives: glass in frames, stained glass, its molecular structure, as a window to the world, and a separator to reality.
Starting with a glass harmonic tone, ever-present in our daily lives, our history and the whole of our culture; glass is mostly unseen, rather trivial, transparent – being there yet being invisible. Seemingly an unimportant part of life but always dividing us from it, we view our reality through glass – unfolding behind windows, coloured through stained glass, corrected through spectacles, distorted by mirrors and lenses, filtered through television.
The initial image of rain against the window reflects the peace of the interior, contrasting the wet reality dripping onto the glass. The outside world is distorted and stretched – even sounds being abstracted from their sources. The window itself appears to be the source of all noise. Stained glass depicts the history of the world, it overpowers us with peace within cathedrals and churches, yet contrasts stories of worship and devotion with bloody wars – a christian beconing to light through light through glass. The piece explores these images, contradictions and emotional atmospheres and tries to reflect their complexity.
Text interpretation by Carola Boehm, Musicologist.