[-empyre-] Synasthesia - cross-genre work

Dear empyre list,

If I may, I would like to have just one more stab at trying to understand
how condition of synathesia and the concepts it suggests can work in an arts

What comes to mind are cross-genre arts. Synasthesia is, if you like a model
or metaphor for these modes of expression.

There is a tendency to compartmentalise the arts. Not always, but to a large
degree. In writing for instance, sci fi, one of the genres I write in, is
boxed off somewhere apart from mainstream fiction. Its legitimacy is
questioned by many authors and others writing and working in general
fiction. This persists today; when I raised the issue of cross genre writers
like Orwell and Iain Banks at a recent sci fi convention in Sydney,
discussion faltered, they didn't fit the sci fi canon. Its interesting that
we tend to allow this to happen rather than questioning it, the way a work
does or doesn't fit the canon, surely the quality of the work is the primary
issue, not what genre, if any, it happens to be expressed in. To me a canon
is a low level concept, useful only as a general way of categorising things.

With sound and visual works (AV/VJ/VR), there are many precedents, opera for
instance, film. New work in multimedia that explores cross genre ideas tends
to have a low level of exposure, the cultural and/or technical
infrastructure isn't there, or perhaps isn't established yet, and the
concepts are still developing and perhaps some will die a natural death. It
hasn't become mainstream yet or been given a cultural context that would
allow more general exposure. This is changing.

I think a forum for cross genre work would probably be useful, more general
than IOTA for instance, and include
text/literary/sound/visual/olfactory/haptic etc and could serve as an online
repository of such works, in much the same way that musicmavericks.org does
for non-mainstream music in the US. I went to a Harry Partch concert here in
Sydney a couple of years ago, it was brilliant, exploratory, well performed,
I really enjoyed the piece played on broken ceramic tiles. It came, it went,
it sunk from view. I'd like to see things like that given more general
cultural exposure, by culture I don't mean arts/culture, local culture
whether Western or whatever. I'd go to a Partch concert anytime, it was fun,
it was great. 

Receptiveness to these cross genre works will only increase with better
exposure. Perhaps they need time to evolve along with the evolution of
western or other cultures, that's of course if they are allowed to in this
atmosphere of conservative hatred we are experiencing at this time in



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