Etudes by Sharon Gal is a collection of scores and propositions, presented as a deck of 78 cards, with text on one side and colour on the other. A music, performance and art resource, the work acts as a catalyst to inspire and trigger the imagination. It’s an open score with interchangeable possibilities, to be played alone or with others.
Etudes is an invitation to play, engage, contemplate and explore; to enhance and expand one’s experience, thinking, practice and performance. It can be used as a set of instructions to be combined, or by drawing a single card from the pack. You can choose intuitively from any of the colours, or shuffle the cards to let chance influence the outcome.
Etudes pertains to the oracular and traditions of divination and mysticism: the path of learning, personal growth, awareness and self-knowledge. Its creation was informed by a series of collaborative compositions directed by Sharon Gal over the past 12 years, exploring composition as a shared resource.
The work is situated within art and music practices, using text and graphic scores, improvisation, art and language. It connects to the Fluxus performance workbook, Peter Schmidt & Brian Eno's Oblique Strategies and the ‘Scratch Book’ & 'Nature Study Notes' by the Scratch Orchestra, with whom Sharon was directly involved.
The deck could be used in many creative situations and disciplines appealing to vocalists, musicians, actors and dancers; professionals, students and novices. It will attract people who are not typical arts and music audience with an interest in card games, experimental play and self-development.
This limited artist' edition of 200 was created as part of Sound and Music’s ‘New Voices’ programme and was co-produced with ‘Unpredictable Series’.
“Sharon Gal’s Etudes creates wonder and mystery out of apparently very simple elements: the cards seem to reflect numerous deep influences…..” Steve Beresford
Etudes now reside with the British Music Collection Archive.
I spoke to Sound and Music's Heather Blair about the work Interview
The Wire Magazine March 21
1st presentation of the deck - A conversation with Fiona Allison (Sound and Music)
2nd presentation - Audio-visual performances by musicians & artists
performed by Tiger Lily Kemp