04.21.2009

Spill – Kinetic Music

Posted by AJ Harbison at 9:46 pm

While researching something completely unrelated last week, I ran across this video on YouTube. It’s a live performance of a piece called Spill, composed by one Erik Griswold, and it’s very intriguing. It consists of a swinging pendulum that also acts as a funnel, slowly pouring thousands and thousands of rice grains onto the ground as it moves back and forth. The performer then places things like bowls and sheets of paper beneath the funnel, creating different timbres and sometimes pitches as the rice pours over them. It’s strangely mesmerizing. What do you think? Is this music? It’s certainly organized and orderly, and more aesthetically pleasing than, say, this piece of John Cage’s. You can check out the website of the performer and composer at http://www.clockedout.org.

What I really want to know is: Who gets to clean up the mess afterwards? And is that considered part of the performance?

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