Philip Corner - No Notes Nonce | Other Aspects
Holland House, Sisak, Croatia
06. December 2019 - 19. January 2020


curators: Alma Trauber, Dorotea Fotivec

As part of the "Drugi aspekti | Other Aspects" project, we are opening an exhibition of one of the founders of the Fluxus movement - Philip Corner. The "Other Aspects" project is the result of a collaboration between the Institute for the Research of the Avant-Garde, the Marinko Sudac Collection from Zagreb and the City Gallery Striegl in Sisak.

During the exhibition opening, Philip Corner will hold a performance "No Notes Nonce," elements of which will later be exhibited with other works.

Philip Lionel Corner was born in 1933 in New York, United States. He is one of the founders of the Fluxus movement, which arose in the early 1960s. His works outside of music and composing include assemblages, installations, collages, drawings, paintings, and calligraphy, which he became interested in during his military service in Korea in 1960 - 61. His music often explores unintentional sounds, random events, minimalism, and non-Western instruments.

Corner's creative work includes the use of recorded music, piano improvisations (which can consist of almost every part of the piano and a different number of performers), sound meditations, compositions for traditional instruments, computers, or special Asian instruments. It also includes metal instruments (e.g., gongs) in which he finds their sonic interpretations. He also creates conceptual sound works, orchestral pieces, but also minimalist ones, such as "One Note Once." The performance and work prepared for this exhibition conceptually continue this very series, where the extreme position of the tone further shifts - into silence, into "No Notes Nonce." According to Corner, silence does not necessarily mean something "less" - it opens up action, spontaneity, noise, just the opposite of silence.

Fluxus is an international shared artistic attitude, a network of artists, designers, poets, musicians, and creatives that emerged in the early 1960s. It has its foundations in experimental music and questioning the concept of art. Fluxus started as a rebellion against the commercial art market, elitism, and conventions in the arts. From its beginnings in New York, it has expanded to Europe and Japan. Fluxus does not have a unique way of creating. It includes all mediums, everyday objects, questioning of art, work, and art itself through various forms of works, installations, musical compositions, and performances. One of Fluxus' goals was to remove the boundary between art and the everyday world, to reject the notion of "high art" and to bring it closer to the public. The most prominent names in this movement, along with Philip Corner, are John Cage, Nam June Paik, George Maciunas, Joseph Beuys, Ben Vautier, Ben Patterson, Alison Knowles, Mieko Shiomi, Yoko Ono, etc.

One of the anthological works of the Fluxus movement is Philip Corner's "Piano Activities," first performed in Wiesbaden in 1962, which caused a great scandal during the first series of Fluxus concerts in Europe. Through a free interpretation of one of Corner's compositions, George Maciunas, Dick Higgins, Ben Patterson, Alison Knowles, Wolf Vostell, and Emmett Williams physically disassembled the piano for several days, whose remains were then auctioned off to the audience. Philip Corner's series of works, in addition to experimental music and composing, installations, and other concepts, include "Compositions of Reality" in the form of objects or concepts, Fluxus events-performances, "Petali Pianissimo" or "Metal Meditations" installations and other works.

This specific collaboration in the "Drugi aspekti | Other Aspects" projects will bring forth exhibitions of works from the Marinko Sudac Collection that point out to artists and their less-known works, as well as work series, which confirm "different & other aspects" and positions within artistic tendencies of avant-garde art forms and practices of the twentieth century, some of which are still ongoing today. By tracing the research shifts and novelties in the dialogic relationship between the artistic and anthropological practices, as well as recognizing" a common ground of where political and aesthetic goals are exchanged" (according to Francesco Marano), we will endeavor to point out the possibility of a new reading of the selected works from the Marinko Sudac Collection.

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