Fixtures in the Fold
Instrumentation: percussion quartet
Year Composed: 2017
Premiere: June 20, 2017 • Nief Norf Summer Festival Performance Fellows
Fixtures in the Fold was composed in spring of 2017. Prior to composing the work, a memoir I had been reading by musician/artist/poet Patti Smith had me thinking a great deal about the relationship between objects and memory. In her memoir, Smith looks to objects she has collected throughout her life to lend meaning to the present moment. I find this material reverence at once fascinating and difficult to comprehend. I structured this piece according to the ever-changing relationship between the objects, memory, and identity, as we grow older. The first hurdle is object permanence: a milestone in infant development that allows the mind to believe an object to exist when it is no longer present. An object catalyzing the ability to form memories foreshadows the type of relationship Smith discovers with her possessions. And yet, these material anchor points that connect our past and present must yield to an understanding of the ephemeral nature of such attachments. Any such significance we assign is immeasurably delicate for it is lost as soon as it is forgotten.