“For now time is the duration of a thought”
Clarice Lispector, Água Viva
Time fascinates because of its pervasiveness: there is no way to think around it. As with anything so ubiquitous, an assumption of time as natural and non-negotiable is quickly made, but concepts of time are constructions, and those constructions depend strongly on social and technological realities. At first sight, time’s nature is linear. In the Kantian tradition, future becomes present becomes past, and there is no way back. But other concepts are possible. Time can also be simultaneous, multidimensional, or reversible. Time is a non-linear way to order events in relation to each other, and since sound is a time-based phenomenon, those possibilities are fundamental conditions for making music.
Sound and music offer a space where those aspects of this otherwise elusive matter can be made tangible, where we can experiment with its many facets and possible approaches. Sound and music can unhinge the authority of clock time, by for example taking us into a shared synchrony in which the social takes over, or on the contrary offering a space where an individual can disconnect and time travel into memory or unknown futures. Music creates a special momentary bond between musicians and public when listeners enter into somebody else’s time without necessarily knowing its dimension beforehand.
The four days of Oscillation 2023 will propose different settings to explore these considerations. Day by day will zoom in on aspects such as displacement in time by memory or anticipation; time-structuring instruments like rhythm, gesture, pulse, repetition or silence; durational simultaneity in which the audience can navigate; and the subjective temporal experience of improvisation which strongly draws on relationality.
Oscillation ::: o tempo is hosted at MILL (Needcompany) and HISK, Brussels