Hello, darkness, my old friend.
Silence is darkness, darkness of the ears. But there is no absolute silence. When I stood in an anechoic chamber, all ambient noise sucked out as by a sponge, the roar of blood filled my ears: always there, never noticed before. In 2001: A Space Odyssey, space is silent, as a vaccum is, but what you hear is the breathing of the astronaut. Silence is irrelevant if there are no ears to hear. If there are ears, there is blood and breath.
Silence is John Cage’s 4´33˝. For four minutes and thirty-three seconds the piano does not play. During that time there is silence. Silence of the piano. But the audience breathes, shifts, rustles; the air conditioning hums; cars pass on the street outside. You hear it. It is what you hear, what you had ignored before. The daily blood and breath in the…
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