Saturday, 25 February 2006

Inevitable Impossibilities

Today someone told me the 'true' story of how they accidentally killed a robin which flew under their foot as they were walking in London, and it was squashed flat by their boot! I joked about how the probability of this happening was near zero, that it falls into the category of 'impossible', but it happened.

This reminds me of some of artist Keith Tyson’s playful works which explore the intuitive difficulties encountered when thinking about the worlds of chance, probability, fate and freewill. Some of his very unlikely ('impossible') exhibits point to the fact that every moment involves a completely unique arrangement of atoms in space and time (leaving Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle aside) with a probability of occurrence of near zero, and yet they're happening all the time. A nice idea perhaps to compile a list of both true and made up 'impossible' events.

Monday, 13 February 2006

Miniature Masterpieces

I heard Webern's Six Bagatelles for the first time today, extraordinary!

Concentrated, delicate, precise, intense and full of energy.

Simultaneously alien and natural.

The very epitome of finding beauty in the detail.

My lesson - even small, short, or simple creations can be powerful and beautiful.

Webern's Six Bagatelles distilled

Friday, 10 February 2006

In the footsteps of Queneau

'Opening the Cage' - 14 variations on 14 words

I have to say poetry and that is nothing and I am saying it
I am and I have poetry to say and that is nothing saying it
I am nothing and I have poetry to say and that is saying it
I that am saying poetry have nothing and it is I and to say
And I say that I am to have poetry and saying it is nothing
I am poetry and nothing and saying it is to say that I have
To have nothing is poetry and I am saying that and I say it
Poetry is saying I have nothing and I am to say that and it
Saying nothing I am poetry and I have to say that and it is
It is and I am and I have poetry saying say that to nothing
It is saying poetry to nothing and I say I have and am that
Poetry is saying I have it and I am nothing and to say that
And that poetry is nothing I am saying and I have to say it
Saying poetry is nothing and to that I say I am and have it

Edwin Morgan

In order to find gold, an artist sometimes needs to dig at the end of a rainbow.

I discovered this provocative, playful poem whilst checking the partial Cage quote used as a subtitle to my blog (the full quote reads 'I have nothing to say and I am saying it and that is poetry as I needed it.')

Whilst the poem's not to do with different styles of expression, it does remind me of Raymond Queneau's 99 brilliant variations on telling a simple story (Exercices de style - 1947).

Morgan selects 14 from millions of possible word orders! Each variation of these words triggers different thoughts, about being, having, saying, poetry, nothing and more.

Look. There are infinite colours.