Friday, 18 December 2009

The Fluxus movement emerged in New York in the 60's, moving to Europe, and eventually to Japan. The movement encompassed a new aesthetic that had already appeared on three continents. That aesthetic encompasses a reductive gesturality, part Dada, part Bauhaus and part Zen, and presumes that all media and all artistic disciplines are fair game for combination and fusion. Fluxus presaged avant-garde developments over the last 40 years.
Fluxus objects and performances are characterized by minimalist but often expansive gestures based in scientific, philosophical, sociological, or other extra-artistic ideas and leavened with burlesque.
This is an excerpt from a January 1966 lecture that Yoko Ono gave at Wesleyan University. Quoted in Lucy Lippard's Six Years: the Dematerialization of the Art Object from 1966 to 1972.
"All of my work in fields other than music have an Event bent ... event, to me, is not an assimilation of all the other arts as Happening seems to be, but an extrication from various sensory perceptions. It is not a get togetherness as most happenings are, but a dealing with oneself. Also it has no script as Happenings do, though it has something that starts it moving- the closest word for it may be a wish or hope ... After unblocking one's mind, by dispensing with visual, auditory and kinetic perception, what will come out of us? Would there be anything? And my events are mostly spent in wonderment ... We never experience things seperately ... but if that is so, it is all the more reason and challenge to create a sensory experience isolated from other sensory experiences, which is something rare in daily life. Art is not merely a duplication of life ... Among my instructions paintings, my interest is mainly in "painting to construct in your head" ... the movement if the molecule can be continuum and discontinuum at the same time ... There is no visual object that does not exist in comparison to or simultaneously with other objects, but these characteristics can be eliminated if you wish ... The painting method derives as far back as the time of the Second World War, when we had no food to eat, and my brother and I exchanged menus in the air."

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