Three Sculptural Impressions is based on three sculptures by artist Michael Heizer. These three sculptures located at the Menil Collection in Houston, TX, are small versions of the “Nine Nevada Depressions” in the Black Rock Dessert in Nevada. Each movement is a sonic representation of the sculpture. This piece was commissioned and premiered by Omni Brass for the Menil Day Festival.
Circumflex – This main motive in this movement is a passacaglia. The passacaglia is inspired by Purcell’s “When I am laid in earth” from Dido and Aeneas. Each member of the quartet plays the passacaglia then passes it to the next person in turn.
Rift – In this movement, the music is based on 5 separate “mini movements”. The artwork is 5 seemingly random straight lines. The music follows the same pattern, 5 lines that do not intersect, and instead have their own linear projection.
Dissipate – This movement is based on the fast direction changes in the sculpture. The artwork quickly changes directions with very angular and sharp movements. The music follows in the same vane, very angular, and fast with rapid changes in direction and material.