Thursday, January 14, 2010

Belgische surrealisten in de VS (2).

"Early on, surrealists discovered this kind of imaginative freedom in African American music. The attraction to Black music must have seemed natural, for as the Chicago surrealist Group reflected in a special surrealist supplement to Living Blues magazine in 1976, "the surrealists could hardly have failed to recognize aspects of their combat in blues (and in jazz), for freedom, revolt, imagination and love are the very hallmarks of all that is greatest in the great tradition of Black music." Natural, yes, but not immediate. Some surrealists - Jacques Baron, René Crevel, Robert Desnos, Michel Leiris - appreciated jazz from the start, but others - including André Breton, author of the 1924 Surrealist Manifesto - initially found music less legible than the literary and plastic arts, and the great painter Giorgio de Chirico proclaimed "No Music". The winds shifted in 1929 when Belgian surrealist Paul Nougé published an essay titled Music is Dangerous, which offered a critical defense of music as one of many artistic forces "capable of bewitching spirit.""

excerpt from 'Freedom Now Sweet - Surrealism and the Black World' by Robin D.G. Kelley, in the book 'Surrealist Subversions - Rants, Writings & Images by the Surrealist Movement in the United States', edited and introduced by Ron Sakolsky, Autonomedia 2002, ISBN 1-57027-122-4, page 136.

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