There are so called works of 'art' found in places like Tate Modern in London. I don't knowwhetherthey have an empty frame among all this junk but no doubt if they have someone has claimed it as a masterpiece!
What if a photographer took a camera with him on a trip and set his camera to just take random pictures on a timer - what if some of those pictures turned out beautiful? Is the aesthetic value less because the artist was no longer in complete control? Is your concern here primarily about the art? Or is it more about the artist?
I think Cage's piece 4'33" is the perfect keystone to the Western music tradition. It releases it from unnecessary concepts such as control, complexity and virtuosity - there is nothing wrong with those attributes but music and art are not limited only to things with those attributes.
Cage's work points to the infinite. It enriches the Western tradition and opens it up to broader possibilities. This is not to say that everything before him was invalid and everything after him must drastically change. As I said I think his work adds to the tradition, and offers valid new perspectives. It does not subtract from or limit.
Anyone can use these ideas and run with them (or other ideas) any which way. Pointing to a wall and calling yourself an artist? Sure! Why not? But that doesn't sound very inspired to me, all though it depends what was on the wall and the context.
Last edited by tdc; Feb-04-2015 at 08:37.
I do not think people who hate 4'33" are ignorant. I know many intelligent people who hate Mozart. Most of the anti-Cage people are very intelligent. Most of the people I know who love Cage are very intelligent. The problem is really ego.
I am a very knowledgeable, smart person and I hate Cage so he must be bad.
I am a very knowledgeable, smart person and I love Cage so the people who hate him must be ignorant.
So we now have the absurd situation of two opposing groups of very intelligent people calling each other stupid and getting thread closed down because the other side was mean to me.
The irony is that at one time I considered Cage a fraud. As a result of this debate the rhetoric of the anti-Cage faction has succeeded in convincing me that Cage is a great composer and discovering works of Cage that I enjoy.
The pro-Cage people are actually pretty harmless. Just leave them alone.
It is impossible to make anything foolproof because fools are so ingenious. And I am a very ingenious fellow
Last edited by Woodduck; Feb-04-2015 at 09:17.
I'm afraid that statements such as "Cage's piece 4'33" is the perfect keystone to the Western music tradition," "it releases it from unnecessary concepts such as control, complexity and virtuosity" and "Cage's work points to the infinite" strike me as merely a lot of floating abstractions, unconnected to anything real. "Releasing music from control" denies the purposive nature of art, and "pointing to the infinite" really means nothing at all, since "the infinite" is a concept with no meaning except the negation of limits, which is is neither conceivable or meaningful. These phrases may have poetic resonance for you, but as aesthetic philosophy they lack substance.
Last edited by DavidA; Feb-04-2015 at 09:55.
Cage wrote a variety of works - In a Landscape is pleasant enough and even received an endorsement from esteemed member ArtMusic. Certainly not a racket:
Oh dear, here we are again. Anyway, I just have a couple of things I'd like to say. First off, I'm a big Cage fan, and I find 4'33" an interesting little piece, but I'm not going to get all steamed up about it (either in enthusiasm or disparagement).
About silence though, parts of Woodduck's post (see #58 above) did bring a smile to my lips. Here's the part:
Do excuse me, I have to return now to lining my entire apartment in aluminium foil to stop the alien lizards from reading my thoughts...
Although you are dead, can I suggest a sequel to 4'33" ?
Similar to the original, but with intentional sound in the first and third movements. That would stir the pot!