LondonSense Sound/Sound Sense. Fluxus Music, Scores & Records in the Luigi Bonotto Collection
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How should we use a grand piano in order to produce sound? By opening the piano and stacking wooden blocks inside the instrument until one falls and creates a noise, or by dropping dried beans onto the keys? Conceptual fluxus artist George Brecht (1926–2008), in one of his iconic works Incidental Music, instructed fellow artists to demonstrate how several people at once could interact with the piano.
The Fluxus movement emerged in the 1960s as an international network of artists, musicians and performers who staged experimental happenings using everyday materials. They shared an attitude to creativity that was anti-academic, quotidian and open to all.
Including works by John Cage, Philip Corner, Dick Higgins, Alison Knowles, George Maciunas, Claes Oldenburg and Yoko Ono Sense Sound/Sound Sense investigates Fluxus artists’ interest in music and sound through performance, scores, records and objects from the Luigi Bonotto Collection. Fluxus artists assigned importance to musical production, presenting public events as concerts that challenged conventional form and content in music. Their approach to music scores was equally radical. Breaking free from traditional sheet music, they devised notational systems based on graphics, poetry and the visual arts.
Sense Sound/Sound Sense was produced and first shown at Fondazione Musica per Roma, Auditorium – Parco della Musica Roma
This is the first UK display of the Luigi Bonotto collection, the largest collection of UK documents in Italy.
Sense Sound/Sound Sense. Fluxus Music, Scores & Records in the Luigi Bonotto Collection at Whitechapel Gallery, 2019. Installation view. Courtesy Whitechapel Gallery