Photo: Alex Woodward

Arika, Catherine Christer Hennix, Florian Hecker & Robin MacKay

Before or after finitude?

Electronic music, time, thought, the word, and consecutive matters - a discussion.

What we wrote about it at the time: Who: INSTAL 10 artists Catherine Christer Hennix and Florian Hecker, chatting to Barry from Arika and Robin MacKay. Robin is the editor of Collapse1, the most interesting (and most interestingly radical) journal of research and development in contemporary thought, and required reading in our house2

 

What: Hecker and Hennix both make some of the most advanced electronic music we've heard or thought about. Both are inspired by radical philosophical and mathematical systems of thought, but perhaps from very different schools or stances when it comes to: time, thought and the world, infinity, and so on…

 

Why: Did you know that probing the seamy underbelly of 20th Century mathematics reveals ideological strife and controversy and intrigue and nastiness and fervour on a quite shocking scale? Did you know that whatever side you come down on reveals an awful lot about where (for e.g.) you put human thought in relation to the world, or what kind of advanced, mind-expanding electronic music you might make.

  • 1. www.urbanomic.com
  • 2. And certainly for anybody interested in, (as I’m sure you all are): culinary materialism, a physics of no time, radical neuroscience, Islamic Exotericism*, what Copernicus did for us, artistic applications for Einstein’s model for four-dimensional spacetime; and, you know, the like….*The opposite of being esoteric (had to look that up)..
  • Notes by Robin Mackay

    Extract

    Hume had asked, simply, how we know that the laws of nature will remain the same tomorrow as they are today - how do we know the sun will rise tomorrow?  What seems to me to be common between these two, very different works by Hecker and Hennix, answers to the first principle of INSTAL - that 'Music is about more than just music'. They both seem to me to use sound as a tool of speculative thought: which means something rather paradoxical: If we understand that ʻspeculativeʼ means some set of ideas that can tell us something about the structure of experience, but cannot themselves be experienced, then thereʼs something paradoxical about using a work of art – a manipulation of experience – to investigate the realm of the speculative. And yet (and this is why we are here) sound in particular seems to have the capacity to evoke the speculative.

  • CC Hennix Booklet

    Extract

    C.C. Hennix has written an essay about her performance at INSTAL.

    Her work can on first impression sound incredibly simple. As non-specialists in the outer regions of advanced mathematics, Eastern philosophy and tuning systems, neurophysiology or the bathing habits of Heraclitus (“you cannot step into the same river twice”), we can’t explain to you all the ways in which it is in fact composed of sophisticatedly interconnected parts; of all its complexity. 

    But it’s safe to say that the following notes, as an example of the ways in which Hennix’s music is informed, set her apart as one of our key thinkers of the drone, it’s Eastern precedents and their interaction with specific trends in modern Western philosophical and scientific thought. The following notes are an important reminder of how the drone, (and it’s uncanny nature as being both changing and yet still the same; of producing a sameness which is not identical), is far more than something that can be reduced to the merely sonic.C.C. Hennix has written an essay about her performance at INSTAL.

    Her work can on first impression sound incredibly simple. As non-specialists in the outer regions of advanced mathematics, Eastern philosophy and tuning systems, neurophysiology or the bathing habits of Heraclitus (“you cannot step into the same river twice”), we can’t explain to you all the ways in which it is in fact composed of sophisticatedly interconnected parts; of all its complexity. 

    But it’s safe to say that the following notes, as an example of the ways in which Hennix’s music is informed, set her apart as one of our key thinkers of the drone, it’s Eastern precedents and their interaction with specific trends in modern Western philosophical and scientific thought. The following notes are an important reminder of how the drone, (and it’s uncanny nature as being both changing and yet still the same; of producing a sameness which is not identical), is far more than something that can be reduced to the merely sonic.