Brian Eno is MORE DARK THAN SHARK
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"Craft is what enables you to be successful
when you're not inspired." - Brian Eno

Consequence Of Sound NOVEMBER 1, 2011 - by Cap Blackard

BRIAN ENO'S "ILLUSTRATED TALK" AT MOOGFEST 2011

Even with all the dancing, partying, and debauchery, Moogfest remains a more intellectually minded festival. Case in point: For two hours, Brian Eno took us to school. The Thomas Wolfe Auditorium hosted Eno's "Illustrated Talk", a separately ticketed event within Moogfest, in which the renaissance artist delivered a lecture the equivalent of seven or so TED Talks smashed into one another. Or, as he put it, "a circuitous look" at things he'd been thinking about over the years as told by "Rambling Jack Eno" - everything from Copernicus, to cybernetics, to how choosing a haircut is the equivalent of choosing a point in a multidimensional space.

With an uncanny itinerary of points to touch on, Eno started at the most approachable point possible: music. He discussed the beginnings of his fascination with experimental music, starting with fellow Moogfest 2011 alumni Terry Riley and Steve Reich. Though the subject matter often turned lofty, Eno kept things consistently light with self-aware anecdotes and hilarious asides, including his shamefully ugly debut image of 77 Million Paintings in Sydney and how adult online image galleries are a window into human creativity. Ultimately, Eno's talk was a message on how art and music have changed culture and how human culture hinges on the dichotomy between control and surrender. Eno's latest piece, 77 Million Paintings (now actually a hundred million paintings), is an ever-changing audio-visual installation all about surrendering - both surrendering control as an artist and the viewer surrendering to the experience. To say that there's a lot on the man's mind would be an understatement.

Everyone left the auditorium heads buzzing with new ideas, new information, and hopefully some inspiration. One thing's for sure. If every college seminar was this engrossing, we'd have never missed a class.


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