Monday, March 6, 2017

it's the electrocular!

From a newspaper published in 1960.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Iannis Xenakis, soundtrack for "Orient-Occident" (1960)

In 1960 Iannis Xenakis composed and recorded the soundtrack for a film commissioned by UNESCO (of the United Nations) by Enrico Fulchignoni. The film links disparate eras and cultures—a "contemplative homage to vanished cultures." Xenakis aimed to "translat[e] the perspective of men today when faced with the inheritance of their distant ancestors." The Fulchignoni film was presented in Paris at the Musee Cernuschi for the occasion of an exhibition about the recipocal influences of various civilizations, from Greece to Italy, all the way to Japan, passing through India and China along the way. Among the sound sources is a violin bow drawn over various objects. It has been described as "an electroacoustic piece for magnetic tape with four tracks."

A recording of the Xenakis score/soundtrack is available at YouTube here.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Jasper Johns, "Painting with Two Balls"

Jasper Johns, Painting with Two Balls (1960). Encaustic and collage on canvas with object. I saw this at the Philadelphia Museum of Art when the painting was on loan from the artist's collection.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

fascism not confined to the Twilight Zone

Rod Serling's antifascist closing narration to the March 4, 1960, episode of "The Twilight Zone"—"The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street." (audio)

Monday, March 9, 2015

Whitman, Williams, Oppen

George Oppen in a letter to William Carlos Williams, Summer 1960: "People who are afraid to talk won't produce much poetry. Tho Whitman has been no use to me. Perhaps arriving after you I don't need him. I always feel that that deluge and soup of words is a screen for the uncertainty of his own identity." (Selected Letters of George Oppen, ed. Rachel Blau DuPlessis, p. 39)

Sunday, March 1, 2015

the conservative's selection of Ez

Conservative publisher Henry Regnery put out a book of miscellaneous (and in some cases uncollected) essays on American civilization by Ezra Pound.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Jasper Johns, "Flashlight"

Jasper Johns, Flashlight (1960); cast 1980-81. Made of bronze and glass. (Philadelphia Museum of Art, February 2015, on loan from a collection of the artist.)

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Hannah Weinstein's "The Four Just Men"

Hannah Weinstein, living and working in England since 1952 to avoid anticommunist blacklisting and possible congressional prosecution in the U.S., created a British television series aired in 39 episodes in late 1959 and 1960 called The Four Just Men. Someone has done us the favor of making 37 of the episodes available on YouTube here. One episode features the resurgence of fascism by way of a weekly magazine that has caused fights between the "Americans" and Puerto Ricans in a boys' club. Below is a screenshot of what Mr. Rivera, father of a boy who is stabbed in a scuffle with "Americans," reads in Garnes Weekly.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Nam June Paik cuts off John Cage's tie

On October 6, 1960, at Mary Bauermeister's atelier in Cologne, while performing Etude for Pianoforte, shy young Nam June Paik suddenly and violently took a scissors and cut off John Cage's tie as Cage was sitting near the front of the audience.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Pierre Joris on Paul Celan, with reference to "The Meridian"

New PennSound podcast: 20-minute excerpt of my discussion with Pierre Joris on Paul Celan's experience of the Shoah: Joris makes reference to his translation and edition of Celan's 1960 speech, "The Meridian."

Saturday, February 1, 2014

educational utopia

The 1930s version of educational innovation (and its problems) circa 1960.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Rauschenberg's piece for Duchamp, 1960

Robert Rauschenberg, "Trophy II (for Teeny and Marcel Duchamp)" - 1960.

From 1959 to 1962, Robert Rauschenberg created a series of "Trophies," highly personal combines dedicated to those artists who had most influenced him. In "Trophy II (for Teeny and Marcel Duchamp)," he repurposed a seven-panel white painting, inbuing it with vibrant color, aseemblage, and references to Duchamp and his wife, Teeny. The left-hand panel refers to Teeny with its inovcation of letters T and Y, while the right-hand panel is a stand-in for Duchamp and includes an aluminum sheet in an oblique reference to the reflective surface of The Large Glass.

The Walker Art Center in Minneapolis owns this 1960 piece. I saw it at the Rauschenberg/Cage/Duchamp/Cunningham show at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in late December 2012.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Ashbery's poem "Europe"

From a letter Frank O'Hara wrote to Ashbery on July 14, 1960: "Europe is carrying all before it, it is on everyone's lips and in their heads."

In an undated letter (from around 1960) Kenneth Koch wrote to Ashbery to say that of all the poems Ashbery was sending over from Paris, poems which were to form The Tennis Court Oath, "Europe" was the most influential. Koch desperately says of this piece, "I can't seem to do what you do. Huh! All I want to do is imitate you" (letter dated January 25, 1960).

On January 7, 1960, O'Hara says of the "long poem" ("Europe"): it is "the most striking thing since The Waste Land."

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Brion Gysin

Brion Gysin records in 1960.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

1960 materials at UbuWeb

Iannis Xenakis, NEG-ALE (1960)
Cioni Carpi, Punto e contrapunto (1960)
Joseph Cornell, Gnir Rednow (1960)
Ed van der Eisken, Handen (1960)
Stan VanDerBeek, Achooo Mr. Kerrooschev (1960)
Stan VanDerBeek, The Smiling Workman (1960)
Stan VanDerBeek, Blacks and Whites, Days and Nights (1960)
Stan VanDerBeek, Skullduggery Part II (1960-1961)
Harry Smith, Heaven and Earth Magic (1950-1960)
Alexander Kluge, Brutality in Stone (1960)
Norman McLaren and Evelyn Lambart, Lines: Vertical (1960)
Richard Myers, The Path (1960)
Nobuhiko Obayashi, Dandanko (1960)
Nobuhiko Obayashi, E no Naka no Shouja (1960)
Ken Jacobs, Little Stabs at Happiness (1969)

Gustav Metzger, Auto-Destructive Art Manifesto (1960)
Jose Lino Grunewald, aromamora; falo; sempre ceder (all 1960)
Friedrich Achleitner, o-i-study; ouch; alas! (all 1960)
John Cage, Tacet (1960)
Louis Zukofsky, Julia's Wild (1960)
Eugen Gomringer, The Poem as Functional Object (1960)
Luis Bunuel, A Statement (1960)

Files in History of Electronic/Electroacoustic Music (1937-2001)
Berio, Luciano - "Momenti" (1960)
Clementi, Aldo - "Collage II" (1960)
Kagel, Maurizio - "Transicion I" (1958-1960)
Maderna, Bruno - "Dimensioni II (Invenzione su una Voce)" (1960)
Mathews, Max - "Numerology" (1960)
Nono, Luigi - "Omaggio a Emilio Vedova" (1960)
Pousseur, Henri - "Electre" (1960)
Xenakis, Iannis - "Orient-Occident" (1960)
Stockhausen, Karlheinz - "Kontakte" (1958-1960)
Brion Gysin, Mektoub: Recordings 1960-1981 Link
Salvador Dali, Salvador Dali Speaks
Richard Maxfield, Pastoral Symphony and Amazing Grace
William Carlos Williams, Interviews with Walter Sutton, Recorded October 11 & 20; November 3 & 15, 1960

Above: early photograph of Ken Jacobs.