Illuminated Chaconne Project Summary
In the iridescent art of Illuminated Chaconne, I symbolically combine the philosophical insights I gained from a Bach Chaconne-infused transcendental dream with imagery that suggests Bach’s luminous remembrances of his first wife, Maria Barbara, who died suddenly at the age of thirty-six. Together, these two intertwining visual perspectives document life’s passage through recurring cycles of change as it continually builds new forms from the seeds and structures of the past.
The drawings of Illuminated Chaconne incorporate my dream’s design foundation of an expanding spiral galaxy (an ancient symbol of the life process), while reflecting the meanings of the word illuminate: “to make luminous or shining” and “to enlighten intellectually or spiritually”. This project shares a philosophical kinship with illuminated manuscripts from medieval and Renaissance times, but reimagines their meditative purpose in contemporary form.
In collaboration with projection designer Francesca Talenti, the art of Illuminated Chaconne will be translated into an immersive, subtly animated, visual installation to accompany a live solo violin performance of Bach’s entire Second Partita in D minor. We also plan to create a separate virtual reality application to augment a possible museum exhibit. Both innovative presentations go beyond a static gallery show to offer listeners and viewers a multidimensional experience of Bach’s musical genius. Illuminated Chaconne’s forty-eight interrelated, mixed media drawings will be completed in 2020, the 300th anniversary of Bach’s composing of his Chaconne in 1720.
The size of all drawings is 20 1/8” x 20 1/4”, rendered in colored pencils, liquid acrylics, and archival colored pens on 100% rag paper.