Music is an experience, not a science | Ennio Morricone, 1928-2020

Ennio Morricone fix a paint on his house wall, Rome, 1966

“I was born in 1928, so in 1943, 1944, we had the war in Rome. There were a lot of 
hardships, a lack of food, many shortages. So when I worked with the Americans,
 the English, and the Canadians soon after the war, when I played with them, they paid 
me with food. That will give you an idea how widespread poverty was at that time.”

"I was offered a free villa in Hollywood, but I said no thank you, I prefer to live in Italy."

“In my youth, cinemas showed two films in one day. I used to watch both of them. 
It may sound strange, but ‘West Side Story’ was the only musical I liked. I didn’t like 
musicals, or films with songs, at all. I always thought they were not real, that the songs
 sounded a little bit false. But in the case of ‘West Side Story,’ things were different.”

"My favourite type of pizza is a Napoletana: tomatoes, mozzarella, 
and very few anchovies. It must have a thin base."

Ennio Morricone, Janiculum Hill, Rome, 1966

"Music is an experience, not a science."

“I often use the same harmonies as pop music because 
the complexity of what I do is elsewhere.”

"I come from a background of experimental music which mingled 
real sounds together with musical sounds."

“My more risky or avant garde music is not that well known 
to a wider audience, but I wish it was.”

"Bernard Herrmann used to write all his scores by himself. So did Bach, Beethoven 
and Stravinsky. I dont understand why this happens in the movie industry."

"You can see my decision as either a distinctive factor 
or as a limitation. I don't feel it is a limitation."

"We live in a modern world, and in contemporary music the central fact is 
contamination. Not the contamination of disease but the contamination of 
musical styles. If you find this in me, that is good."

Ennio Morricone and Sergio Leone pose together in the primary school year book, 1937

"I also used these realistic sounds in a psychological way. With The Good, the Bad and the
Ugly, I used animal sounds - as you say, the coyote sound - so the sound of the animal
 became the main theme of the movie."

“Music needs room to breathe.”

“In music, what is very important is temporality of space and length, based on the 
breathing space the director gives the music within the film, by separating the music 
from various elements of reality, like noises, dialogues… That’s how you treat music 
properly, but it doesn’t always happen this way. Music is often blamed, but it’s 
not its fault.”

"Popularity doesn't bother me. It attests to the affection and comprehension of the 
public. The important thing is to retain the pioneer spirit. I profoundly love the 
profession, and I work on each film as if it were the first - and the last. Giving the 
best of myself. Many of the 'greats' ask their arranger to write their scores for them. 
Me, I write all alone, from the first note to the last. All."

Ennio Morricone

"It could have been extremely boring to write musical scores for only westerns 
of horror films. It was really exciting for me to work in all these various genres."

“I want people to know about all the kinds of music that I write. 
Some believe I just write film scores, which is not true.”

"I like to feel and understand people's contentment with what I've done."

Ennio Morricone, 1928-2020

Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza, 1978

Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza (also known as The Group or Il Gruppo) was 
an avant-garde free improvisation group considered the first experimental composers collective.
Main Members: Franco Evangelisti (piano, percussion) -Ennio Morricone (trumpet, flute) 
- Egisto Macchi

The Love Poems of Marichiko | Kenneth Rexroth, 1978

Édouard Boubat, A Gentle Eye, 1970


I sit at my desk.
What can I write to you?
Sick with love,
I long to see you in the flesh.
I can write only,
“I love you. I love you. I love you.”
Love cuts through my heart
And tears my vitals.
Spasms of longing suffocate me
And will not stop.


If I thought I could get away
And come to you,
Ten thousand miles would be like one mile.
But we are both in the same city
And I dare not see you,
And a mile is longer than a million miles.


You ask me what I thought about
Before we were lovers.
The answer is easy.
Before I met you
I didn’t have anything to think about.


Just us.
In our little house
Far from everybody,
Far from the world,
Only the sound of water over stone.
And then I say to you,
“Listen. Hear the wind in the trees.”


Making love with you
Is like drinking sea water.
The more I drink
The thirstier I become,
Until nothing can slake my thirst
But to drink the entire sea.


You wake me,
Part my thighs, and kiss me.
I give you the dew
Of the first morning of the world.


Because I dream
Of you every night,
My lonely days
Are only dreams.


Burn in my heart.
No smoke rises.
No one knows.


Who is there? Me.
Me who? I am me. You are you.
You take my pronoun,
And we are us.


I scream as you bite
My nipples, and orgasm
Drains my body, as if I
Had been cut in two.


Your tongue thrums and moves
Into me, and I become
Hollow and blaze with
Whirling light, like the inside
Of a vaste expanding pearl.


I hold your head tight between
My thighs, and press against your
Mouth, and float away
Forever, in an orchid
Boat on the River of Heaven.


I cannot forget
The perfumed dusk inside the
Tent of my black hair,
As we awoke to make love
After a long night of love.


Every morning, I
Wake alone, dreaming my
Arm is your sweet flesh
Pressing my lips.


I waited all night.
By midnight I was on fire.
In the dawn, hoping
To find a dream of you,
I laid my weary head
On my folded arms,
But the songs of the waking
Birds tormented me.


Did you take me because you loved me?
Did you take me without love?
Or did you just take me
To experiment on my heart?

Kenneth Rexroth, The Love Poems of Marichiko, 1978

Kenneth Rexroth, 1905 – 1982

The Love Poems of Marichiko were originally published as if they had been written 
by a young Japanese woman and Rexroth had merely translated them. In reality there 
was no such person as Marichiko — the poems were all written by Rexroth himself, 
projecting himself into a feminine persona, during the same period that he was 
translating several volumes of Chinese and Japanese women poets.


Book//mark - The Way of the World | Nicolas Bouvier, 1963

Nicolas Bouvier, Thierry Vernet on the road to Ankara, Turkey,  1953

“Traveling outgrows its motives. It soon proves sufficient in itself. You think you are
 making a trip, but soon it is making you - or unmaking you.”

“Traveling provides occasions for shaking oneself up but not, as people believe, freedom.
Indeed it involves a kind of reduction: deprived of one’s usual setting, the customary
routine stripped away like so much wrapping paper, the traveller finds himself reduced to
more modest proportions - but also more open to curiosity, to intuition, to love at first sight.”

“In the end, the bedrock of existence is not made up of the family, or work, or what others
 say or think of you, but of moments like this when you are exalted by a transcendent power
that is more serene than love. Life dispenses them parsimoniously; our feeble hearts could
not stand more.”

“That day, I really believed that I had grasped something and that henceforth my life would
be changed. But insights cannot be held for ever. Like water, the world ripples across you and
 for a while you take on its colours. Then it recedes, and leaves you face to face with the void
you carry inside yourself, confronting that central inadequacy of soul which you must learn
to rub shoulders with and to combat, and which, paradoxically, may be our surest impetus.”

“The over-ripe, golden autumn which had taken hold of the town tugged at our heartstrings.
The nomadic life makes you sensitive to the seasons: you rely on them, even become part
of the season itself, and each time they change, it seems to have to tear yourself away from
a place where you have learned to live.”

"At daybreak the smell from the ovens drifted across the snow to delight our noses; the smell
of the round, red-hot Armenian loaves with sesame seeds. . .Only a really old country rises to
luxury in such ordinary things; you feel thirty generations and several dynasties lined up
behind such bread."

“The splendid wooden mosque - which you can find if you search - nobody would think of
 showing you, being less aware of what they have than what they lack. They lack technology:
 we want to get out of the impasse into which too much technology has led us, our sensibilities
 saturated to the nth degree with Information and a Culture of distractions. We’re counting on
their formulae to revive us; they’re counting on ours to live. Our paths cross without mutual
understanding, and sometimes the traveler gets impatient, but there is a great deal of self-
centeredness in such impatience.”

"When I went home there were many people who had never left who told me that with a
bit of imagination and concentration they travelled just as well. I quite believed them. They
were strong people. I'm not. I need that physical displacement, which for me is pure bliss."

Nicolas Bouvier, The Way of the World, 1963

Nicolas Bouvier writing on the terrace of a hotel in Tehran, 1954
Nicolas Bouvier, The Way of the World, 1953-54

Nicolas Bouvier (1929  – 1998) was a 20th-century Swiss traveller, writer, picture editor and
 photographer. He studied in Geneva in the 1950s and lived there later between his travels.

Bouvier was born at Grand-Lancy near Geneva. Between the ages of six and seven, he devoured
 Jules Verne, Curwood, Stevenson, Jack London and Fenimore Cooper. "At eight years, I traced
with my thumbnail the course of the Yukon in the butter of my toast. Already waiting for the
world: to grow up and clear off."

His father encouraged him to travel and in 1953, without waiting for the result of his degree,
he left bourgeois Switzerland with no intention of returning. In a small, slow Fiat, he and his
friend Thierry Vernet  travelled across Europe and Asia over nineteen unforgettable months,
pausing in Belgrade, Istanbul, Tabriz and Quetta to paint, write and wait tables, taking
longer than Marco Polo - as Bouvier proudly pointed out - to reach Japan.


Alphabetarion # Measure | Slavoj Zizek, 2001

Damien Hirst, Strontium 500, 1997

“The one measure of true love is: 
you can insult the other”

Slavoj Zizek, 2001

Summer Nights, Walking | Photos by Robert Adams, 1976-1982

Summer Nights, Walking: Along the Colorado Front Range | Robert Adams, 1976-1982

'Robert Adams, born in Orange, New Jersey in 1937, is best known for his series of photographs
 that investigates urban encroachment into the landscape of the American West. In much of his 
work, Adams balances a sense of hope for Nature's persistence against despair with man's 
destruction of what was, until relatively recently, wilderness.

He took the Summer Nights series along the eastern edge of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, 
where he lives. The series leads the viewer outward from urban centres towards the rural plains 
and mountains, suggesting a walk out of town as the light fades.

As the series title suggests, Adams took many of the photographs at night in summer, when twilight
 can extend into the whole night. Others, where electric lights are balanced - and even dwarfed - by 
the drama of darkening skies, were taken at actual twilight.' 

 From the website of the V&A Museum, London

Modern Beauty | Illustrations by Seiichi Hayashi, 1945-2008

Illustrations by Seiichi Hayashi, 1945-2008

Seiichi Hayashi (born 1945)  published his first comics work in Japan’s influential underground
magazine Garo. A prolific artist, he is also a film and commercial director, a children’s book
author, an animator, and an illustrator.

Various Portents | Alice Oswald, 2005

Mark Rothko (1903-1970) Untitled, 1969

Various stars. Various kings.
Various sunsets, signs, cursory insights.
Many minute attentions, many knowledgeable watchers,
Much cold, much overbearing darkness.

Various long midwinter Glooms.
Various Solitary and Terrible Stars.
Many Frosty Nights, many previously Unseen Sky-flowers.
Many people setting out (some of them kings) all clutching at stars.

More than one North Star, more than one South Star.
Several billion elliptical galaxies, bubble nebulae, binary systems,
Various dust lanes, various routes through varying thicknesses of Dark,
Many tunnels into deep space, minds going back and forth.

Many visions, many digitally enhanced heavens,
All kinds of glistenings being gathered into telescopes:
Fireworks, gasworks, white-streaked works of Dusk,
Works of wonder and/or water, snowflakes, stars of frost . . .

Various dazed astronomers dilating their eyes,
Various astronauts setting out into laughterless earthlessness,
Various 5,000-year-old moon maps,
Various blindmen feeling across the heavens in braille.

Various gods making beautiful works in bronze,
Brooches, crowns, triangles, cups and chains,
And all sorts of drystone stars put together without mortar.
Many Wisemen remarking the irregular weather.

Many exile energies, many low-voiced followers,
Watches of wisp of various glowing spindles,
Soothsayers, hunters in the High Country of the Zodiac,
Seafarers tossing, tied to a star . . .

Various people coming home (some of them kings). Various headlights.
Two or three children standing or sitting on the low wall.
Various winds, the Sea Wind, the sound-laden Winds of Evening
Blowing the stars towards them, bringing snow.

Alice Oswald, Woods etc. 2005

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