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Introduction: The Politics of Sound Art

Introduction: The Politics of Sound Art introduction The Politics of Sound Art I am interested in a political art, that is to say an art of ambiguity, contradiction, uncompleted gestures and uncertain endings, an art (and a politics) in which optimism is kept in check and nihilism at bay. —WILLIAM KENTRIDGE [1]. someone had asked the 14-year-old me to define “sound art” I probably would have pointed to the megaphones that sprouted that spring across the Columbia University campus (see this issue’s cover). They were ubiquitous and frequently mishandled or malfunctioning: words were interlaced with feedback and obscured by distortion. Amplifying one’s voice to address a handful of friendly comrades under a tree seemed more of a conceptual statement than an acoustic necessity. In that turbulent year the inflection of art by politics seemed natural, and music was one of the most conspicuous vehicles of expression. The first discs to grace my kiddie record player were by the subtly subversive Burl Ives (blacklisted 1950), while Pete Seeger (blacklisted 1957) had provided the musical backdrop in the living room. But 1968 was also the year I bought Jimi Hendrix’s Are You Experienced, and electricity became the central component of my musical world. To an adolescent http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Leonardo Music Journal MIT Press

Introduction: The Politics of Sound Art

Leonardo Music Journal , Volume December 2015 – Dec 1, 2015

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Publisher
MIT Press
Copyright
©2015 ISAST
Subject
Introduction
ISSN
0961-1215
eISSN
1531-4812
DOI
10.1162/LMJ_e_00922
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

introduction The Politics of Sound Art I am interested in a political art, that is to say an art of ambiguity, contradiction, uncompleted gestures and uncertain endings, an art (and a politics) in which optimism is kept in check and nihilism at bay. —WILLIAM KENTRIDGE [1]. someone had asked the 14-year-old me to define “sound art” I probably would have pointed to the megaphones that sprouted that spring across the Columbia University campus (see this issue’s cover). They were ubiquitous and frequently mishandled or malfunctioning: words were interlaced with feedback and obscured by distortion. Amplifying one’s voice to address a handful of friendly comrades under a tree seemed more of a conceptual statement than an acoustic necessity. In that turbulent year the inflection of art by politics seemed natural, and music was one of the most conspicuous vehicles of expression. The first discs to grace my kiddie record player were by the subtly subversive Burl Ives (blacklisted 1950), while Pete Seeger (blacklisted 1957) had provided the musical backdrop in the living room. But 1968 was also the year I bought Jimi Hendrix’s Are You Experienced, and electricity became the central component of my musical world. To an adolescent

Journal

Leonardo Music JournalMIT Press

Published: Dec 1, 2015

There are no references for this article.