Silent Prayer (extended version after John Cage), 2007
Performed by Rush of Blood.

The title refers to the initial concept that Cage had (1948) for the possibility of a composed "piece" of uninterrupted silence as both an abstract negation of sound/music in reaction to the pervasive piped-in commercial muzak of the time, whilst simultaneously presenting itself as an "acoustical manifestation of a metaphysical concept" with a positive essence of its own. This idea of the seemingly antagonistic, diametrically opposed relationship between sound & silence is taken to another level with this performance for Magazin4 and the collaboration with a young metal band in order to explore again the possibilities for a purposeful and active non-playing. By tapping into the popular sub-cultural genre of metal music the suggestion is already established for noise and in many ways, a certain theatrical mannerism which this "movement" proposes and which maybe short-circuits the relationship 4.33" has to the Zen Buddhist phenomenon of nothingness. The visual tropes of a staged performance at once enact the generic conventions of such music gigs utilising smoke, lights and shadows whilst setting-up expectations and tensions around notions of fulfilment, participation, duration and denial. It is a collaborative event between artist and band towards what this (re)staging proposes as a new performance and between band and audience on an immediate experiential level towards a mutual engagement. The visual and performative iconography of the contemporary genre of metal music simultaneously aligned with and up-against the philosophical and conceptual iconography of 4.33" seeks to address our ideas of expectation and perception within the reality of a new configuration. As Henri Bergson wrote in Creative Evolution:

"Now the reality which is here in question is purely relative to the direction in which our attention is engaged, for we are immersed in realities and cannot pass out of them; only, if the present reality is not the one we are seeking, we speak of the absence of this sought-for reality wherever we find the presence of another."

BW Joseph, Random Order: Robert Rauschenberg & the Neo Avant-Garde, p47, MIT Press,Camb Mass, 2007

© Jo Mitchell, 2007 for 4'33" catalogue produced by Magazin4, Bregenz



Silent Prayer,
2007
was documented and now exists as a full-length video (38.18 mins) consisting of real-time audio with accompanying, sequential still images - the relationship between the audio and the visuals has the effect of heightening the sensation of the soundtrack aswell as drawing attention to the iconic 'poses' of the heavy metal band, Rush of Blood, as they perform Silent Prayer.



Magazin 4, Kunstverein Bregenz, Austria - 4'33"
http://www.bregenzerkunstverein.at/english/m4_4_33.htm

Rush of Blood who performed Silent Prayer are a local heavy-metal band from Bregenz
http://www.rushofbloodband.com/RushOfBlood.html

The stage concept and structure was by Celine Condorelli - green room (white house)
state parlor "
I do know the city pretty well, and the Side-box, Sir, and behind the Scenes; ay, and the Green-Room, and all the Girls and Women~Actresses there." 4' 33'' a project of Magazin4 2007
http://www.supportstructure.org

Wall-painting by Jo Mitchell