The more unmusical, the better.
A series of conceptual pieces for solo performer and video. Reality in music is the reality of music, concepts are dissonances for advanced listeners.
We are Duchampions.
“For me, music never exists alone; a composer must always deal with interrelationships. Music deals with technology and the politics of technology, with consumption behaviour, and the cultural and economic value of art. These things play a role in my creative work; I use them as artistic material.” — Johannes Kreidler
Berlin-based composer Johannes Kreidler works in the mode of ‘expanded composition’. His compositions, while musical, are not about music – but rather the systems, economies, and regimes of value that structure music’s place in our world. Pursuing this music/not music approach Kreidler has become a leading figure in ‘conceptualism’, an approach at the intersection of composition and conceptual art.
1. Piano Photo Piece
3. Introduction to the Sociology of Music
4. Downfall 1
5. For Schubert and Schumann
6. Downfall 2
7. Charts Music
8. Hotel Piece
10. Text Clapping
11. Abstract #5
12. Hitler’s Rage, bolero’d
13. Against the Wall
14. Instrumentalisms A
15. Guitar Piece
16. Kinect Studies 1
17. Two Guitars
Duration: ca 75’
Sentences on Musical Concept-Art (2013)
1. A concept piece is entirely determined by one trenchant idea.
2. The idea is a machine that produces the work of art. The process should have required no intervention, it should take its own course. (LeWitt 1967)
3. The concept-machine today is above all the algorithm.
4. The processing-material of the machine today is the total archive.
5. Details, rhetorical means, and formal design are usually only suitable in the form of readymades or by means of chance generators.
6. For each work of art that is performed physically, there are many unperformed variants. (LeWitt 1967)
7. The sensual appearance is only one aspect of the work, to which more or less value can be granted.
8. Each piece of New Music has conceptual aspects. (Spahlinger 2009)
9. Not all ideas have to be implemented. (LeWitt 1967)
10. On the other hand, one can also compose a detailed form out of many different concept-variants or -pieces. Enrichment with jokes is also OK.
11. A banal idea cannot be rescued by a beautiful and expressive design. However, it is difficult to bungle a good idea. (LeWitt 1967)
12. A good idea can be bungled through a beautiful and expressive design.
13. Ideas are the most expressive and most beautiful of all.
14. Improvisation is rarely musical concept-art, least of all when the improvisation is good.
15. Musical conceptualism can be considered as a minimalism.
16. Music does not have to be self-explanatory. The composer does not need to shy away from intermedial ingredients (text, video, performance), indeed it makes perfect sense to articulate them (no hiding important information in the program notes).
17. Dare to make public/publish the even slightest idea if you believe there’s something in it. But give it a proportionate effort (no more than a small text for a small idea).
18. A piece of conceptual music does not have to be completely heard.
19. Music is only New Music when it raises the question: is this actually music? (Spahlinger 1992)
20. The more unmusical, the better.
21. Out of conceptualization emerges contextualization. (Weibel 1993)