New Experimental Music From the Disciples of John Cage

Our daily roundup of Texas headlines.

By Becky FogelSeptember 29, 2016 12:07 pm

The Standard’s news roundup gives you a quick hit of interesting, sometimes irreverent, and breaking news stories from all over the state.

Plug in those headphones – because it’s time for our Thursday music series “Cut In,” during which we hear new songs by Texas-based artists.

While much of Austin is bracing for the ACL Festival and its many famous artists – the city’s New Music Co-op held a much more niche musical event earlier this week. The co-op released a studio recording called “Invisible Landscapes.” It includes commissioned work of renowned, but maybe not easily recognizable, experimental composers. Writer Lyndsay Knecht takes us into a tradition of silence as musical material.

“The year John Cage died, devotees of the composer’s quietude formed a collective called Wandelweiser,” Knecht says. “Since 1992 members of this group kept challenging ideas of how music is supposed to be written and played, from their posts around the world.”

The recording features work by two Wandelweiser composers: Los Angeles musician Michael Pisaro and Austria’s Radu Malfatti. 

The Austin group has made the recording available for purchase at the New Music Co-op

Fort Worth-born artist Travis Boyer has brought a Selena-themed sculpture to the East Coast. Katie Denny-Horowitz is the director of communications at the Socrates Sculpture Park in Queens, New York.

“Travis is one of 15 artists on view at Socrates Sculpture Park right now as part of our emerging artists fellowship,” Horowitz says. “So Travis was one of about 300 artists reviewed through an open call and his was selected for exhibition this year.”

Boyer has mostly worked with textiles and fiber arts but has also created work around Selena and Tejano aesthetics before.

The name of this sculpture? “Selena: Open Casting.”

From Tokyo, Boyer explains the sculpture’s title has to do with the open casting call that took place for Selena’s biopic – Jennifer Lopez landed the role.

“I just thought it was a really fascinating moment sort of a touchstone where all these thousands of teenage girls and adult women and trans people, people who looked a little like Selena and a lot like Selena would show up for this open casting,” Boyer says. “But also that term casting also relates to different sculptural methods.”

The sculpture is made of purple steel and features ceramic big gulp cups adorned with images of Selena. It will be on view for the next six months and after that, Boyer might move the piece to Texas.

And speaking of Selena, the hotly anticipated MAC Makeup Selena collection goes on sale in Corpus Christi on Friday. The general public can start picking up the lipsticks and eyeshadows on October 6.