19th May 2015
I first met Roseline Koener and learned of her work in the "Asia Contemporary Art Show" in Hong Kong March 2015. I was struck by the beauty, unreserved joy and abstract nature of her work. When she talked about her artwork she spoke about the importance music plays in informing her work. She often works on her art while listening to music and lets the music guide its development. I found this concept intriguing as I told her "I often feel the same way when I write music, only the other way around, that I often find writing music can feel a little like painting." When considering and appreciating abstract visual art, there is a unique subjective meaning that can be found through creative thought and contemplation. There is no right or wrong story or concept that your mind applies to abstract art, it makes of it what meaning it can. The meaning and story in abstract visual art aren't immediately clear in the same way that the meaning of what music alone (without lyrics) represents or attempts to convey is subjective and unclear. This similarity regarding representation and meaning in our artistic endeavours and processes (conversely) provided what I felt was a unique opportunity for an artistic exchange or collaboration. I asked Roseline if I could write a piece of music based on the subjective meaning that her art conveyed to me and suggested that perhaps she may be interested in attempting to create a visual artwork based on what meaning my music conveyed to her. She was indeed interested in this idea, and so began what I have termed the Koener Collaboration. I am unfortunately not able to document Roseline's artistic process, however in the following blog posts, I will be attempting to convey the creative process I have gone through to create the music for the Roseline Koener's art series, which she has titled Cantatas for a divine garden.
Today in my email inbox I received five attachments from Roseline of photographs of her paintings from her painting series: Cantatas for a divine garden.
I took these images to be developed as A4 photographs so I would have more freedom to take them with me and to contemplate what they meant to me both as stand alone images and as a collection or series of works.
I chose which painting I would like to write music for first (I have labeled this painting "Green") and then brainstormed on the different subjective words, concepts and meanings that my chosen painting evoked. Finally I used water colours for a kind of artistic play where I recaptured different elements from Koener's painting.
Brainstorm on Green
Life, water, waterfall, snow, sun, sunflower, rain, blood, green, blue, pink, purple, shine, red, light, dark, animal footprints in the snow, floating rose petals, ink, dots, bleeding colour, paper, rough texture, leaves, what is seen through branches, peace, divine presence, sunshine through leaves glimmer and dance on water, thick vegetation, glimpse striking beauty through leaves of trees, green window into the divine, heart, shapes unique imperfect beauty, born of the earth.