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    Henry Gwiazda – Claudia and Paul

    January 15th, 2011

    Henry Gwiazda Claudia and Paul

    If John Cage designed Grand Theft Auto, the results would be a lot like Claudia and Paul, a trio of ultra low-key, animated videos that examine the decaying velvet ropes between art and life. In this Cage-inspired micro-reality, subtlety comes into sharp focus. The two main characters in the title piece don’t do much except stand around and fidget occasionally on “quiet” city streets, where light and shadow work their understated magic on myriad surfaces. Occasional passing traffic, trash set aloft in the wind and other mundane phenomena draws attention to all of the little moments bobbing on buoys in oceans of time that transpire all around the alleged “huge” moments of our lives on the party boat. (You know, catching that touchdown pass, weeping at grandma’s funeral, oohing and aahing at a fireworks display, tossing up your cap during college graduation, crowd surfing at a rock concert, exchanging wedding vows, and all of the rest.) In this virtual world, which is the same as our actual world, random sounds become music, if you give them a chance. (All movements and sounds are tagged with floating captions throughout the DVD.)

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    Henry Gwiazda – noTnoTesnoTrhyThms

    July 20th, 2008

    Henry Gwiazda - noTnoTesnoTrhyThms

    Recent-era sampler collages of a top-notch sort highlighted by two tracks of virtual audio–one for headphones, the other for speakers–that place the works in a physical sphere of sound all around you and even through you. Exact speaker placement and seating arrangement are necessary. With a sampler, Gwiazda captures the sounds of everyday life: a man eating chips, an airplane flying overhead, birds chirping, etc. and combines them at various times with guitar, violin, flute, etc. into “warmly familiar” heavy-duty napkins of sonic abstraction. “Gwiazda himself likes to point out that his sounds aren’t ‘environmental.’ Today, we hear muzak in the environment around us, while Gwiazda takes sounds we no longer hear and serves them back as music, as though noise and music had changed places. It’s clear that in Gwiazda’s sound-world, noises are just noises, arranged for their sonic value. If his music reminds you of anyone else at all, it might be that architect of sonic abstractions Edgard Varèse. But, while Varèse’s components are cold, harsh, machine-like; Gwiazda’s are so warmly familiar that they can’t help but set the listener’s imagination in motion. For all its surreality, this sound-world pulls you in and touches you—where you live.”—Kyle Gann

    Label: Innova Catalog Number: innova 505 Format: CD Packaging: Jewel case Tracks: 8 Total Time: 63:31 Country: United States Released: 1996 Related Artists: Luc Ferrari, John Oswald, Pierre Schaeffer More: Official, Wikipedia