silence #26: morton feldman’s triadic memories by helena basilova

6 December 2019

The exhibition Poems for Earthlings by Argentinian artist Adrián Villar Rojas forms an impressive intervention in the architecture of the Oude Kerk. As a result of the installation, new temporary spaces and architectural volumes arise in the church. One of these ‘residual spaces’ is located right behind the installation. This space is not accessible to exhibition visitors, but it will be for the audience of Silence #26. Together we will explore the new acoustics of this temporary situation in the church. During this morning concert, pianist Helena Basilova will perform the composition Triadic Memories by Morton Feldman.

morton feldman, triadic memories
The American composer Morton Feldman (1926-1987) became well-known in the 1950s. He was close to visual artists such as Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, Philip Guston, Alexander Calder and Jackson Pollock. In his compositions, the perception of time changes and classical form is abandoned. Instead, he introduces concepts like proportion and scale. Lengths of time and silences are increased, challenging the listener’s musical memory. Feldman considered his Triadic Memories (1981) as a spatial landscape through which you can move. Can a landscape last too long, and does it have a beginning and an end?

helena basilova
Helena Basilova (1983) is the daughter of two prominent Russian pianists. She grew up in the Netherlands and studied at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam and at New York University. She performs pieces by Russian composers including Prokofiev, Rachmaninov, Gubaidulina and Scriabin. She has also developed a deep bond with the tranquil and disruptive music of American composers such as John Cage and Morton Feldman. Like her peers Diamanda Dramm and Maya Friedman, Basilova champions a new experience of contemporary classical music in which context, space and sound experience are presented in new proportions.

about silence
The Oude Kerk is located right in the middle of the Red Light District. In the early morning, while the city slowly wakes up, it is striking how beautiful this old neighborhood actually is. Every first Friday of the month at 8 o’clock in the morning you can enjoy the contemporary concert series Silence here. These concerts are a musical tribute to the magical acoustics and space of the Oude Kerk by young, innovative musicians. There are no fixed seats; visitors and musicians roam the church to discover how the music sounds in different places. The concerts are programmed by Jacob Lekkerkerker, curator of music and organist-titulair of the Oude Kerk.

silence #26
6 December 2019, 08:00 – 09:00
Oude Kerk, Oudekerksplein, Amsterdam

upcoming edition
Silence won’t take place in January 2020. The next editions will be on February 7, March 6, April 3 and May 1.