Gravity and grace

Project realised for the St Anna Kapelle in Zurich, culminating in a sound work played in the Chapel. Two-channel sound, 40 mins. 2021

A surprise invitation from a friend to propose a project for the chapel—between two lockdowns—prompted me to invite her back for a conversation to discuss Simone Weil’s essay Gravity and Grace (an essay on ways to respond to crisis and hardship which marks Weil’s shift from philosopher and political thinker to 20th century mystic, and announcing her subsequent conversion).

The conversation was recorded on separate channels, and each signal then further converted – with both analogue and digital means – to be turned into a concerto for two voicings, albeit now piano and clarinet. While the conversation’s content has certainly transformed, the conversion points at how the information has been maintained and survives. Not quite music, even if indexed by musical instruments, the piece makes for ambiguous and pluri-dimensional listening.