Snapping The Drone was an intense performative concert where the eyes of the crowd played an important role. Tony Conrad, known as a multidisciplinary artist, performed a violin concert behind a white curtain. Just his shadow was visible as a projected moving image.
Now let's talk about the ears: the Teatro Piccolo was filled with a pre-recorded violin mixed with Conrad playing live. The acoustic wave rose higher and higher and the sensation I had was a very physical presence in the space.
During the conversation with Klaus Biesenbach, chief curator of the Department of Media of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Conrad made the fascinating statement that photos as well as films could be converted into paintings, as he sees the paintings he made that are on view in the central pavilion, curated by Daniel Birnbaum. I believe that In Snapping The Drone we assisted in this kind of transformation, while the artist seemed to be in close relation with his violin.
The conversation took place after the concert and was about Conrad's early works. The sense of the past represents the most relevant way to conceive our present, Conrad said. Conrad offered some examples of the importance of artists in the musical field who he inspired, such as Rhys Chatham and Sonic Youth, and he talked about his work with LaMonte Young and others since the 60's - referring also to the extended music practice - and what this means nowadays.
Actually, I'm still hearing the fading blasting noise concluding the performance...