Forest – FINAL

by | Jan 25, 2016 | Artwork #1: Score, Projects


1. Enter dense forest, alone.

2. Don Bose QC-15 noise-cancelling headphones.

3. Proceed to cut down nearest tree.

4. Look around to ensure that nobody saw.

5. Forget.

6. Repeat.


Didactic Statement:

For this project I chose to focus my score more on the idea of using instructions to embody a metaphor rather than creating a set of actionable instructions for one to follow. During the process of coming up with an idea that I wanted to work with and expand upon, I jumped around between topics, but one thought resonated with me more than the rest. I wanted to create a piece that would reflect on the internal dialog that people have regarding their core values and integrity, while at the same time illuminating the inherent greed that is within everyone.

My score is a representation of the popular question/phrase that I feel embodies this principle, which is, “If a tree falls in a forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?” The idea that something only “happens” when it is observed and otherwise has not yet “happened” in an observable sense is a not only a mind blowing concept with roots as deep as quantum mechanics, but its also the driving force behind how people justify doing something alone that they would otherwise not do while in the presence of others. The universal expectation that one should treat others as they wish to be treated, themselves, is usually enough to discourage someone from advancing their own agenda at the expense of someone else’s, so long as both people simultaneously understand what is happening. However, if that same person has the ability to advance their own agenda at the expense of someone else’s, but this time WITHOUT the other person immediately knowing, then the original person will not factor immediate shame into the cost of their action and will be more likely to justify a greedy action.

In summary, I initially decided to write my score not only as an attempt to embody the popular hypothetical question that seems to confuse everyone, but also to show the aspects of human personality that usually remain unseen. While I believe that I accomplished this task with relative success, I am much more satisfied with the personal gain that I received from this project and the newfound interest I have discovered.