FOURM / Shinkei / Luigi Turra: Clean Forms
Dragon's Eye Recordings

FOURM, Shinkei, and Luigi Turra—minimalist sound artists all—would seem to be perfect choices for a project designed to pay tribute to the 1960s visual art movement also known as minimalism. In both aural and visual contexts, the minimalist artist reduces the material in question to its purified essence and strives to remove the particular imprint of the individual creator so as to universalize the production in question.

The CD-R's three audio works are true ‘headphones listening' pieces in that while there is a generous amount of activity in play in each, close listening is required in order for it to be fully appreciated. The sound artists present long-form recordings that pay tribute to minimalist artists who exerted a profound influence on their work and, in each case, the sound artist names the piece after the visual artist or an associated work that has been translated into sound. Though all of the sound artists involved share a commitment to the values of reduction and austerity in their micro-sound creations, their pieces also reveal differences in sonic character. Dedicated to Mark Rothko, FOURM's “Seagram Series” presents ten minutes of faint bell tones and rustles in a manner that often suggests winds blowing through hollowed-out concrete tunnels. Pregnant pauses of silence alternate with field recordings of leaf-like crackle, distant bird calls, and snatches of human conversation in “Nokori,” a fifteen-minute setting Shinkei (David Sani) composed in honour of Ken Nakazawa. Italian sound/installation artist and graphic designer Luigi Turra contributes the longest and most reduced piece of the three, the eighteen-minute “Alluminium.Zinc,” which, like the Shinkei work, segues between passages of silence and low-level industrial sonics of a rather metallic kind.

December 2009