Literature with Other Arts
Edited By Haun Saussy and Gerald Gillespie
Steven P. SONDRUP
Brigham Young University
Artistic interdisciplinarity has almost as long or perhaps an even longer history than any of the individual arts as we understand and categorize them today. Combinations of artistic modes of expression have indeed developed in many combinations like music and poetry, song and dance, or narration and drama. It is obvious that varying combinations of poetry and music—to mention only two—have continued into the present day in forms as diverse as rap to the continuing tradition of the classical Lieder. Many artists are experimenting with forms as distinctly modern as light shows in conjunction with architecture and drama configured for the computer monitor by abstract and randomly generated visual patterns. The intersection of art forms I wish to investigate is not as strikingly contemporary as these, yet draws on technical possibilities only available since the mid-twentieth century. I will try to show the remarkable way the artistic inspiration of three Swedish friends—all highly appreciated artists—working in media not typically drawn together has intersected to produce an impressive, intellectually challenging, and interpretatively thought-provoking body of work. My intention, thus, is not to offer any kind of theoretical foundation for the interrelation—or more precisely intersection—among their modes of artistic expression, but rather to present a case study of their collaborative work although the artists involved were loath to use that term. The three in alphabetic order are Sven-Erik Bäck, Björn Erling Evensen,...
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