Sculpting sound: metaphor, material and contemporary music

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


Of the many transformations in music since the breakdown of tonality, perhaps one of the most profound has been a shift in governing metaphor from the idea of discourse and narrative to one which prioritises the sculptural possibilities of sound. Such a change in perspective allows a radically different approach to composition, where mass, density and transparency of material alongside the structural use of timbre replace such traditional concepts as melody, harmony and phrase. A brief survey of key works illustrating this ‘sculptural turn’ in music will conclude with a discussion of two recent pieces which respond to the ceramic art of Edmund de Waal: Psalm, for spatialised ensemble of 13 players and The White Road, for flute and orchestra.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusUnpublished - 8 May 2017
EventThe Edge of Sculpture - University of York, York, United Kingdom
Duration: 8 May 20178 May 2017


OtherThe Edge of Sculpture
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
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