Tag Archives: Glove of Bones

digitalDIZZY – MERZ Funder

merz-crop-edit-2k

The absolutely huge MERZfunder compilation was released on Friday 28th October. 114 original tracks by some highly creative individuals & bands, many pieces made specifically for the project. As well as offering two tracks, one with Peter Wullen, I was very honoured to be asked to put together some cover artwork for this.

The piece took specific reference from the many collages of Kurt Schwitters, whose Merz Barn in Langdale is the point of this fundraing project. More about the Barn can be found in a previous post HERE. The project is a digitalDIZZY production, an independent net label and promoter of all things anarchic and free thinking. Kudos to Ruby Black and the Devotional Hooligans.

Here’s a small selection of pieces by Schwitters that informed my cover design.

The MERZunder is on Bandcamp now and for a small number of 5 British Pounds it can be yours.

There is a huge diversity of music here. Most of the featured artists also have their own Bandcamp or Soundcloud page.

various-artists-merzfunder-merzinfo

UPDATE: Press Release

MERZfunder press release
31 October 2016

It is 100 years since the Dada movement first rocked the art establishment and paved the way for every oppositional and groundbreaking cultural force that followed, from surrealism to pop art, situationism to punk. Yet in the recent BBC celebrations of the anniversary, no mention was made of Kurt Schwitters, the man seen by many as a major force in and beyond Dada – and the only one to leave a lasting physical legacy of his work in the UK.

MERZfunder brings together more than 100 musicians and experimental noise makers to raise money to support and preserve the Schwitters Merz barn in Cumbria. This was where Schwitters made his final Merzbau installation, a sculptural collaged wall, which he worked on in the last years of his life, walking five miles each way from his home in Ambleside to get there.

The MERZfunder digital download – available for a minimum donation of £5/€6/$6 at merzfunder.bandcamp.com – comprises 114 exclusive tracks, delivering more than 10 hours of Schwitters-inspired creativity. Contributors include:

The Astronauts
V4V (Charles Hayward/This Heat)
Ob
NIk Turner’s OUTRIDERS OF THE APOCALYPSE (Hawkwind/Inner City Unit)
Geoff Leigh (Henry Cow/Warrior Squares)
Richard Youngs
Rapoon
Neil Campbell (Astral Social Club/ Vibracathedral Orchestra)
Hagar the Womb
Band of Holy Joy
The Shend (The Cravats/Very Things)

Money raised will go towards the rebuilding and shoring up of the Merz barn at Elterwater in the Lake District, which was damaged by one of last winter’s storms.

Kurt Schwitters was an outsider everywhere – not just as an exile in the Lakes, in London, in Norway, but also in Germany, where the Berlin Dadaists wouldn’t let him join their club because he broke their rules as well as everyone else’s. That inspired him to develop his Merz style of artwork, which he applied to poetry, performance, and abstract expressionist sculpture, collages and installations.

Schwitters was an artist in exile for most of his life, and he worked wherever he was. He ended up in a barn in the English Lakes. This was a working building that was not designed to house an internationally important artwork. It has not weathered well, and is now buckling under the onslaught of age and climate change. It was the last place of work for one of the world’s most influential artists and it continues to inspire others today. For that legacy to continue, the barn needs to be made sound.

That’s what this MERZfunder is raising money for. Please pay what you can to help make this happen – and, as a bonus, treat your ears to a wealth of wonderful sounds created by 100+ of us who want to thank Kurt Schwitters for showing us that creativity is about finding the artist within each and every one of us in whichever medium feels right, the more primal and abstract the better.

https://merzfunder.bandcamp.com/releases

NOTES

As one of the originators of the cut-up collage technique, which he applied to sound, poetry and 3D installations in his famous Merzbau projects, Kurt Schwitters inspired countless others to explore their creativity outside the confines of the fine art tradition. Think Brion Gysin, William Burroughs, David Bowie, Lydia Lunch – all gave a nod to Schwitters for setting them on their path.

Kurt Schwitters was an outsider everywhere – not just as an exile in the Lakes, in London, in Norway, but also in Germany, where the Berlin Dadaists wouldn’t let him join their club because he broke their rules as well as everyone else’s. His creativity wasn’t bound by the values of the art world, his work never belonged in galleries. He had built Merz installations inside an ordinary house in Hanover, and when he had to leave them there (there was no place for ‘degenerate’ artists in Nazi Germany), he found somewhere else to make his mark: inside a cold, dark, little barn, buried in the most awe inspiring natural landscape. In the last years of his life, he walked five miles each way through those breathtaking mountains and valleys to get to his wall from Ambleside and make Merz.

The MerzBarn Langdale is under the care of the Littoral Arts Trust, which encourages artists inspired by Schwitters to continue his legacy by working at the site. http://www.littoral.org.uk / https://merzbarnlangdale.wordpress.com / @MerzBarnLangdale

The Schwitters Wall was cut out of the barn in 1965 and taken to the Hatton Gallery in Newcastle, where it remains part of the permanent display. https://hattongallery.org.uk

For more details, contact digitalDIZZY through Facebook or email: algonne@hotmail.co.uk

And to close this post and great video & sound from Sequential

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Glove of Bones – Mabinogi

taith-hir-02

This from my on-going project site The Glove Of Bones. I’m really happy with this outcome. It’s exactly as I planned – long, narrative free, a visual drone, a tied in soundscape (which I was really pleased to persuade Cousin Silas to help with). It’s a long piece at 72 minutes and I’m unsure how many might make it to the end, it is however in three easier to digest sections, each with their own character. I hope you take the leap and click on the link.

A film by The Glove Of Bones.

Taking it’s title from the Medieval text, The Mabinogion (a loose translation of this being Juvenile Distractions), this new work of film and original music takes on non-narrative considerations about passing time, the joy of travel & landscape, musings on history and our broader connection to our ancestors through reflection and our progeny through creative acts.

tonnau-araf-01

tonnau-araf-02

In recent years I’ve collected materials when taking the annual Summer break holidays. These often return as blog diaries with pictorial content, and more recently as associated songs & sounds. This year, on the 4 1/2 hour drive to Wales some vague project came to mind, fragments, ways of collecting content, some notional endpoint started whispering.

taith-hir-01

From the point of arrival, in the rain, with this sat-nav avoiding single track road as our entry point, it started to come together. The piece would directly connect to the place, the local elements, history and the joy of distraction that comes from being away from your natural home.

Filmed in August 2016 around Pembroke in Wales with some underlying sounds either recorded in the area or made during the trip.

Additional tone and texture in the soundtrack was provided by acclaimed ambient musician Cousin Silas.

As with the original text which has four ‘Branches’ or short stories (additional tales where added later), the film is split into three sections, each bearing a Welsh language title. These link to Earth, Water & Air in some ways.

This is the Mabinogi as dreamed by the Glove Of Bones

The piece is split into three sections, or branches.

1- Taith Hir (Long Road) – 20mins
2- Tonnau Araf (Slow Wave) – 30mins
3- Breuddwydion mewn carreg y Pentre Ifan (Stone Dreams at Pentre Ifan) – 20mins

pentre-ifan-02

pentre-ifan-01

Please anticipate after thoughts to be added below.

Useful links below;

https://www.gloveofbones.com

http://www.mabinogion.info

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Wave:Line:Form:Curve:Repeat

The following is reposted from my Glove of Bones page and illustrates some recent visual work.

I hope you find something of interest here.

Wave Line Form Curve

I recently produced a set of images which started with screen grabs from ‘Glove of Bones’ film which you can enjoy all over again HERE.

pic01

pic02

pic03

pic04

These had a certain degree of random selection, having taken 20 or so across the four main sections of the film they were whittled down into a set that had some visual connection but as stand alone items appeared fairly abstracted. Taking their source and shape they were allocated the a shape designation which lead into the digital Lino Cut accompanying image.

These were then ordered and conjoined with drawn & collaged elements over the top of large digitally printed base images.

There is no particular narrative and the naming is really no different from descriptors one might use when making a sound peace, quieter, scratchy, more bass, etc and I’ve built the pieces in the same process/structure as I would if building four sounds that were intended to be heard in sequence. Of course aspects of self, personality and approach work their way under the skin of the pieces.

The final pieces have been scanned and digitally reproduces as art prints on Hahnemuhle Photo Rag paper. The prints can be reordered, moving No1 to position 4 for example without destroying the continuity.

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ORNITHOLOGY – Cousin Silas & Glove Of Bones

Glove of Bones

You really can’t plan creative journeys, you just get up and start walking.

When I did the Crow Dub for the Cousin Silas & Friends release earlier in the year it was ‘one-off’. On my part a gratefully received invitation, really enjoyable to do and we both thought very successful as an outcome.

So, after several months of swapping files on FB, much discussion and huge amount of freedom I’m really pleased to offer ‘ORNITHOLOGY’ an 8 track bird themed collaboration between myself and Cousin Silas. It started along the ‘dub’ theme adopted by the Crow tune but has wondered off into a variety of areas, blown by the wind under it’s wings.

Available now on the always excellent digitalDIZZY label.

Listen, enjoy and download here.

In addition to the digitaDIZZY download release we can offer this special Limited Edition CD copy. These handmade copies include all of the track artworks and will ship with a signed Certificate of Authenticity showing the edition number. The edition will be limited to 30 copies and produced in sets of 10 if suitable interest is shown. Currently only proto-type versions have been produced but its basically ready to go.

Ornithology Special Edition

These unique limited edition releases will be £18.50 each plus postage. UK postage estimated at £3.50 with European & US being a little more.

If you are interested in obtaining one of these rare birds before extinction, please complete the form below. Once we have a practical number in hand we can confirm a shipping date. Payments will be by Paypal with details to follow.

If you are totally committed to the program, please buy now using the Paypal button below.


Buy Now Button

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MerzBarn – Fundraiser

Kurt Schwitters and Hilde Goldstein outside the Merz Barn, c. 1946. Photo © K und E Schwitters Stiftung, Hannover

Kurt Schwitters and Hilde Goldstein outside the Merz Barn, c. 1946. Photo © K und E Schwitters Stiftung, Hannover

I have noted here previously an association with the wonderful digitalDIZZY net label. They have released two of my musical pieces and have been kind enough to include my schizzle on two of their great compilations.

Well there’s another one forthcoming which I’m more than happy to get behind. Please forgive the following copy and paste content, but I hope you’ll get the point.

From Wiki:

Kurt Hermann Eduard Karl Julius Schwitters (20 June 1887 – 8 January 1948) was a German artist who was born in Hanover, Germany.

Schwitters worked in several genres and media, including Dada, Constructivism, Surrealism, poetry, sound, painting, sculpture, graphic design, typography, and what came to be known as installation art. He is most famous for his collages, called Merz Pictures.”

For my part, having an interest in graphic design, collage, printmaking and surrealism, I took quite an liking in his work when at art school.

“Schwitters first visited the Lake District on holiday with Edith Thomas in September 1942. He moved there permanently on 26 June 1945, to 2 Gale Crescent Ambleside. However, after another stroke in February of the following year and further illness, he and Edith moved to a more easily accessible house at 4 Millans Park.

During his time in Ambleside Schwitters created a sequence of proto-pop art pictures, such as For Käte, 1947, after the encouragement from his friend, Käte Steinitz. Having emigrated to the United States in 1936, Steinitz sent Schwitters letters describing life in the emerging consumer society, and wrapped the letters in pages of comics to give a flavour of the new world, which she encouraged Schwitters to ‘Merz’.

In March 1947, Schwitters decided to recreate the Merzbau and found a suitable location in a barn at Cylinders Farm, Elterwater, which was owned by Harry Pierce, whose portrait Schwitters had been commissioned to paint. Having been forced by a lack of other income to paint portraits and popularist landscape pictures suitable for sale to the local residents and tourists, Schwitters received notification shortly before his 60th birthday that he had been awarded a £1,000 fellowship to be transferred to him via the Museum of Modern Art in New York in order to enable him to repair or re-create his previous Merz constructions in Germany or Norway.[58] Instead he used it for the “Merzbarn” in Elterwater. Schwitters worked on the Merzbarn daily, travelling the five miles between his home and the barn, except for when illness kept him away. On 7 January 1948 he received the news that he had been granted British citizenship. The following day, on 8 January, Schwitters died from acute pulmonary edema and myocarditis, in Kendal Hospital.”

Merz Barn Eltewater

The Elterwater Merzbarn is at the centre of this project.

This from Merz Barn Langdale

“The Merz Barn project is an outstanding contribution to the understanding of contemporary art, not only in this country but in the world-art context. It has taken great care and work to bring this to fruition. It speaks enormously well of Cumbria and of us as a nation, and will undoubtedly be a focus of interest for decades to come. To think that it will crumble away for the sake of a modest grant speaks very badly of the Arts Council’s priorities, especially in the more remote parts of England. I do hope this will be reconsidered.” Email from Lord Bragg, 10.6.14

The Merz barn building still stands much as Schwitters left it in 1948. Located in a remote woodland in the heart of the Langdale valley in Cumbria, NW England it serves as a symbolic connection and poignant memorial to the spirit and tenacity of the artist who worked there. This project is about the recovery, documentation and restoration of Kurt Schwitters‘ last Merzbau project; the Elterwater Merz Barn, and the international fundraising campaign that is intended to pay for vital restoration work and sustain the development of the project in the longer term.

This brings us directly to the project. This from ‘Merz Funder

“Over the past three years we’ve been visiting the beautiful Elterwater Merz Barn in Cumbria (last creative home of the mighty Kurt Schwitters)using various devices to capture field recordings(outside the barn) & using these to create live soundscapes(inside). On our arrival last week we discovered that the whole site has been severely damaged in recent storms, which is devastating news as the merzbarn receives no arts grant or regular funding. SO we need your help to raise monies and awareness about the final home of uk dada! Ruby/lamorna/Joy/exp ct!”

So for all of the above reasons, I’m very pleased to offer ‘Merzquito’ to the project. This was produced with content by Belgian sound artist Peter Wullen. A happy accident of coincidence, his word assemblage / text/talk poem about a mosquito, reading about Schwitters internment on the Isle of Wight at the end of WWII, and the launch of the Merz Funder project.

I’ll confess to having a couple more lined up and some musings on visual materials. Its great to inspired by a project. I hope some readers here will feel the same. Contribution is everything.

Some vital links here

Merz Funder on FaceBook https://www.facebook.com/Merzfunder/

Merz Barn Langdale https://merzbarnlangdale.wordpress.com

This from A-N https://www.a-n.co.uk/news/kurt-schwitters-merzbarn

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#TDM – The Drone Machine Project

The followings is reposted from the Glove of Bones project page. Thank you for your attention to this matter.

A4

TDM

From the beginning of my swagger into music production of some sort or another the term ‘Drone’ has been in the room. A friend of mine, Mark Ward had started to make ambient music and through this I found the frighteningly good natured and creative community of diverse independent musicians through FaceBook groups, Sound Cloud and Bandcamp net labels. There are people out there making 8 hour compositions, terrifying field noise experiments, dreamy piano / synth / guitar pieces, industrial noise and experimental drone.

Drone (or protracted monophonic/harmonic sound) has occupied a place in music for millennia. From a wet finger circling a wine glass to bagpipes and the sitar, the hypnotic underpin of many musical forms is the drone element.

In contemporary music artists like Sunn O))) and Steve Wilson (as Bass Communion) use sustained repetition and volume to affect an audience at a level other than just song structure & lyrical content.

Following the modern trail back you get the Velvet Underground and Modern Classical composers like Terry Riley, Steve Reich & Phillip Glass.

Further into the obscure there are artist from Dada, the Beats & Avante Garde using pure sound to impact their audience.
A little before the New Year I came across Tony Conrad and the group that formed the Dream Syndicate
In particular the link between a sound experiment and an artefact had resonance.

The Long String Drone is discussed in this article and for some unknown reason the device struck a chord with me.

Tony_Conrad_Long_String_Drone_GB_W

Digging a little deeper the sound produced from these devices cemented the fascination.

Add to that the incredible process & construction behind the work of Ellen Fullman and I was intent on having my own device.

My approach to scale is somewhat limited by domestic circumstance and budget and overall you could say I’ve given an organ transplant to a guitar. I am, as always lead by a Voodoo notion of connection to materials, history and activity. The resulting artefact is almost exactly as I imagined with the added advantage of being functional.

The intention was to build something with a physical presence that took it away from being a guitar, that it would be a functional electric device whose sound could be manipulated, that as an object it would have an ascetic of its own, and that to best of my ability it would be constructed from the ground up.
Most of the ‘guitar’ elements are exhumed from a cheap Strat copy from the local Cash Convertors, the main body is a 1.4M long piece of Oak which the very kind Alan from Custom Frames supplied and routed to my design. The project has come together far quicker than I imagined it would and bar some minor cosmetic intervention its working. Below you can see a gallery of the development process.

The creative applications for this elaborated plank are slowly coming together. I’m hopeful that I can acquire more analogue sound effect devices but that wanders into a whole new world of practical dilemmas. I’ve had one small experiment with the machine which whilst casual and unplanned, I found exciting to produce. The drone element of this is a single unedited production. the sound artefacts that are added are to colour in the narrative (a non specific walking story). This is #TDM 01.

I hope you join me for the further adventures in drone, coming to this page soon.

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The Glove of Dub

Little Shadow

The following is shared from the Glove of Bones site which I hope you find in your heart to follow. I am of course utterly responsible for this, but also very pleased with the message on offer.

Information below…..

It has finally concluded. Whilst I’m very pleased to stand by and support the previous 50/50 and OST pieces, the ‘Glove of Dub’ really does feel like an arrival. Given the intuitive and chancy process this auditory content emerges from, this is the best dressed and most suitably prepared for public gaze to date.

It still whispers obscenities in the ear and has the embarrassing attitude of exposing the occasional slab of bare flesh in an inappropriate circumstance, but has enough personality to carry off its indiscretions.

I can’t thank the fun loving and diversely aware digitalDIZZY label enough for giving this project a virtual home.

If you have a thing for context, knock your self out with some Google fun on the titles. It really might help to explain this sprawling noise.

FREE downloads are available from the Bandcamp site.

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Re-Blog: Anniversary of the Glove of Bones

Re-posting this from the Glove of Bones site. I hope if you find it interesting you will pop over there and follow for updates.

The Silent Flute & the Cyprian Fountain

It goes like this: Last year I was 50, there…. I said it. Years ago as I may have mentioned elsewhere I used take some reflective time and do a self-portrait on my birthday. I had dozens of them from 17 to early 30’s. Then I got distracted and forgot how to draw. So, last year I though rather than doing a picture, and as it was ‘big one’ I’d do something a little more profound.

My wife & and I went a away for a weekend and ended up in Winchester where I went to art school. We also took a trip to Stonehenge and it was around then I was finishing what ended up as the NueChromeWave set of songs. So it occurred to make a kind of abstract musical biography, something that used events, people, places, influences and anything else to hand to mark each of my previous five decades from 1964 until 2014. Thats what the the Glove Of Bones was intended to be, five fingers to the world. In the end that became a broader name for the personality driving the hearse and the song set became 50/50, an homage to chance and small nod to a Frank Zappa song.

Well, a year on I managed to complete 50/50 and a book of images and clues to go with it, plus a 50min film with is here – the sound track of which was released on digitalDIZZY (which made me very happy) and following that I’ve started (and almost completed) what can loosely by described as a ‘dub’ album of new songs. Whilst originally this site was just intended to host the 50/50 project, its come alive as useful place to keep the idea alive – some odd thread seems to pass through it all in one way on another.

I’m not entirely sure whats next, certainly more films for the 50/50 songs, my a vinyl record of some new music, could be punk, could be dubstep, could be dark ambient. Definitely more still images, maybe even some rule breaking colour.

Playing below are the first four complete pieces in the Glove of Dub. They take their titles from a trip to Tintagel, Halloween and some rather poetic 16th century terms for …….sex and body parts. More to follow.

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Glove of Bones – Pictures and new releases

Quite a busy week on the Glove of Bones site. Please visit the site and sign up for notifications. Its not bad.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Re-posting the last two blogs here for brevity.

Little Armstrong & the King of Nightmares battle on the Final Frontier

Little Armstrong & the King of Nightmares battle on the Final Frontier

Showing here for the first time are the raw scans of the images used in the Book of Bones to illustrate the songs. As previously detailed these images are a collaborative effort between my children and my self. I provided them with a list of elements; a spaceman, a ghost, some fish, a monster, a guitar etc – and left them to it. The versions that appear on these pages are my reproductions of their creations.

Art History, chemistry and whispered obscenities in Dr Killicks informal apothecary

Art History, chemistry and whispered obscenities in Dr Killicks informal apothecary

Looking for the Big Fish and foraging for Wild Mercury in Missoula & Hibbing

Looking for the Big Fish and foraging for Wild Mercury in Missoula & Hibbing

The next stage for these will be some small edits and corrections before putting them back into print, possibly with a view to producing a limited edition.

Standing on the Persians grave, dreaming and waiting for Blake's ghost

Standing on the Persians grave, dreaming and waiting for Blake’s ghost

Home is where the heart and soul briefly reside between flights of desire and imagination

Home is where the heart and soul briefly reside between flights of desire and imagination

Two recent associated musical projects have also been posted to Bandcamp this week. Both are available as free downloads in high quality FLAC files.

Ourobus New

On Tuesday 3rd of November the brilliant digitalDIZZY net label released the Soundtrack of the Glove of Bones film on their Bandcamp page. It’s great to get this vote of confidence and interest in some of the creations from this project.

The OST for the film can be downloaded in high quality FLAC format for free on the links below.

50/50 – Song Cycle

Awen New

The release of the OST seemed to be an appropriate prompt to release the 50/50 song cycle on Bandcamp. This is also a free download but also includes so hopefully interesting additional products.

 

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Glove of Films

GoB 03

On one of the ‘other’ channels of my on-line time frittering I did this. Please feel free to follow The Glove of Bones if you don’t mind inviting this kind of occurrence into your digital file. If nothing else it uses a very nice theme.

Information in relation to work flow.

When I started planning the musical aspect of 50/50 it was under the A4+ brand, as per previous issues. The theme of biography was implicit, the format (five 10 minute songs, each broadly representing a decade of life) was built in, and other intentions of continuity (all the visual content would be monochrome for example) seemed reasonably attainable.

As with all such grand schemes it seemed likely that supplementary materials would emerge so the idea of an epilog sprang to mind (and in fact inspired the ‘segue’ pieces), cutting in existing references into a mash-up, sweeping the floor, exhibiting good recycling practices. At some indeterminate point the ‘Glove of Bones’ phrase gained traction and from that the idea of a filmed piece. This is the outcome.

GoB 02

“The tooth root and aching backbone of the Glove of Bones creative project was an idea for a road movie without a road, a biography without a chronology or subject and an imaginary soundtrack for a film, based around a real movie.”

Almost a film in five equal sections with both structured musical content and more abstract found, soundscapes, atmosphere. Holmes would have a field day with the evidence but like all good conspiracy pedlars, I prefer to protect my sources.

GoB 01

I would like particular to credit the use of the ‘Holcombe Tarot’ by Wayne Burrows. I’m continually impressed by his diversity of creation. The Tarot can be seen in use somewhere around the 25 minute mark.

There are a small number of filmic references which movie geeks will spot. They are cited as points of reference for the various immersions the biographical subject has encountered and soaked up. I do not and would never claim any rights to these reflections.

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