for Visual Music Artists, Writers, and Venues
Many years ago (1980-81), I had the privilege to be in the audience of a magnificent concert presented in Montréal by the Quatuor Orford. One of the pieces they performed was Maurice Ravel's "Quatuor à cordes en fa majeur," and immediately, that music became totally identified in my mind with the paintings of Paul Cézanne, especially the "Sainte Victoire" and "Les Lauves" series.
For years, I have wanted to work with/for that music, so finally, here's the very first sketch (I trust/hope there will be more).
These images were not created by looking at Cézanne's work, but at the same time, there's hardly any image that comes into being in my work that has not been nurtured by the work of Cézanne (and a few others).
Like the art of Diego Velázquez, Rembrandt, Vermeer and Chardin before him, and Alberto Giacometti since, Cézanne's work is a far cry from the technical plumbing and conceptually-driven disease so prevalent in art history, especially today.
His (and their) work was much closer to a near-clinical mapping of human experience than to the attempt to wow others with clever ideas ("look ma, no hands!" or "I'm smarter than you are") that plagues us now, as possibly, always.
Cézanne said: "The pursuit of novelty and originality is a false need that poorly conceals banality or lack of temperament."
"A minute in the world's life passes! To paint it in its reality and forget everything for that! To become that minute, be the sensitive plate, . . .give the image of what we see, forgetting everything that has appeared before our time."
"He who does not have a taste for the absolute is satisfied with tranquil mediocrity."
"Art is a religion. Its aim is the elevation of thought."
And finally, here's an interesting statement about Cézanne's approach:
"The mature Cézanne had no designs on the field of vision except to uncover the designs he saw in it.
It is this suspension of will power that gives him admission to the undifferentiated world which precedes knowledge,
to Eden as it was before Adam conferred separating names on each form of vegetal and mineral growth."
Yale Review (Spring 1980), Ronald Hayman
"Each one of us is a brand new point of view on the world." (Maurice Merleau-Ponty, who also said that "Perception is constitutive.")
Music in four movements:
1. Allegro moderato. Très doux (7:40)
2. Assez vif. Très rythmé (6:17)
3. Très lent (8:27)
4. Vif et agité (4:57)
Performed by the (great) Lasalle Quartet