Silence is sound’s afterlife.
Silence is sound’s soul.
Silence belongs to the sound that generated it.
Sound belongs to the silence that surrounds it.
The audible part of sound is physical – the vibration of matter.
Silence is emotional. We feel it.
I remember when I was a schoolboy in Campobasso, Italy; I would wake up on a winter’s morning to a silence enveloping my house that was different to other days. Quieter somehow, and immediately I knew why. I would leap from my bed, open the curtains and be blinded by the deep white view. It had snowed, a hushed white coat covered the surrounding landscape; the silence of the falling snow.
Much later in life I was travelling through Southern Italy, where I visited a volcanic archipelago situated in the Tirrenian Sea on the north east of Sicily - the Aeolian Islands. I spent one night on the island of Stromboli, the only volcano of the archipelago still active. That night I experienced a new kind of silence, like a deep, long shudder; the silence of the sleeping volcano.
There is a great difference between the silence of the falling snow and the silence of the sleeping volcano.
As a musician I play various instruments. The way I play is to think of the instrument I’m playing as a brush, and the sounds I’m making as colours hanging on the music that the other musicians are playing - the canvas.
I’m painting when I play music. I play music when I’m painting.
I play with colors when I make music. I play with sounds when I paint.
In my latest series I am painting silence. I mix dry pigment with bees wax and apply the color discerningly, creating specific moods depending on the kind of silence I intend to represent. I then physically replicate what happens when silence is generated; in the same way sound is removed to create silence, I selectively remove layers of encaustic wax.
What remains is silence…visualized.