Claudia Molitor
Composer & performer (UK), 1974
 
"My work is characterized by a sense of restlessness and 'mischievousness', continuously questioning the condition of composition and its own identity."

Claudia Molitor is a composer and artist whose work draws on the traditions of contemporary music but extends to video, performance and fine art practices. Her work is characterised by a sense of restlessness and 'mischievousness', continuously questioning the condition of composition and its own identity.  An interest in the visual instance of music notation, the proposition of a “Sonic View” or “Sonorama” in relation to the notion of panorama, and touch as a way of experiencing and exploring listening, are some of the areas of focus in her work.

3 questions for Molitor
What opportunities, qualities or restrictions do you think sound has as an artistic material?

"I don’t think of sound as a ’thing’ that I can manipulate in the material sense that I might think of manipulating a piece of paper. I also don’t perceive of my hearing as separate from my seeing, touching, smelling or tasting. This means that in contemplating sound other senses are inevitably involved. In answer to your question then I believe that the opportunities, qualities and restrictions of ’sound’ are ultimately those that I create or imagine for any given artistic situation."

What does silence represent to you – in generel and in regards to your artistic practice?

"The closest I have come to what I might consider silence was on a walk through a snowy Alpine forest. What I could hear was the impact of tiny little bits of snow that were dropping off the trees and landing on the snow-covered ground. It was sonically magnificent! And I could also feel the cold air on my skin and, the slight movements of the trees and smell the crispness of the air… on a sensorial level it didn’t actually feel silent at all… it is impossible to disconnect hearing from the other senses. In regards to my practice, therefore, I tend to think of moments of stillness rather than silence, and it is the moment when stillness seems to become movement that is most intriguing to me."

How do you work with the relation between sound and context in your artistic practice?

"Context is inevitable. Even if one where to attempt to create something sonically “absolute” it would be quite impossible to expect anyone to engage with it outside of context. We humans seem to be hard-wired to contextualise, we can’t help it! I wouldn’t want to assume that my contextual thinking, whist composing, is the same as the contextual thinking of someone experiencing the work later on. For me an exciting exchange takes place when my work remains open enough to allow audience members to bring their own experiences to it, to give space to the possibility of their particular inter-textualisation."


 
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