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dark over light earth was created for the final weekend of the exhibition moca’s mark rothko, which featured 8 rothko paintings from the museum of contemporary art los angeles’s permanent collection.
i initially made a list of every color in each of the 8 paintings, to generate a score. i recorded myself playing the score on harmonium and glockenspiel – the notes and their order pre-determined by my color notations; and the tempo, duration, and overall feel, improvised. some of these recordings were then processed electronically with filters.
i asked jakob danziger to listen to a recording of morton feldman’s rothko chapel on headphones and attempt to play along on violin.
the resulting piece was created by cutting up, layering, and re-organizing the harmonium, glockenspeil, and violin recordings. i wanted to let the conceptual ideas remain a skeletal structure, but also allow the piece to move beyond them… kind of like taking an early sol lewitt cube piece and absent mindedly wrapping twine around it until the original form is almost invisible.