EDITION WANDELWEISER RECORDS
> Jürg Frey
(Nadia Francavilla, violin; Clemens Merkel, violin;
Stéphanie Bozzini, viola; Isabelle Bozzini, violoncello)
|Material can be anonymous. Consider, for example, the middle voices in
medieval hymn books: unadorned, not artful, a simple handiwork, a
leisurely alternation of single notes. It might be a scale, or, beyond
music, the stones of a wall, not artfully stacked, but simply and
properly, the formal idea being nothing other than that of a wall.
When I was working on the String Quartet (1988), I encountered the
painting of Agnes Martin. I saw clear-cut forms, not overgrown with
rhetoric and figuration. Instead, sensuality, radiance and intensity
gripped the entire space.
There was a kind of visibility to her art, which I felt corresponded to
the audibility in my music. Audibility: the moment when sound waves
move in space and the air touches the body. The eardrum is the sensory
connection between the outside and the inside world: we hear the sound
and the composition.
Over the years it became more and more clear to me, that there is no
anonymous material - each material has its shape, and as soon as it
exists in space and time, it carries a distinct handwriting. Anonymous
material is rather an idea that brings the work to a point where
concentration on what is essential becomes possible, and allows one to
feel that he is starting from zero.
Translation: Michael Pisaro