Luc Ferrari – Presque Rien avec Filles

Presque rien avec filles (1989) Within paradoxical landscapes, a photographer/composer is hidden whilst girls are having a sort of picnic on the grass. Without being aware of it, they offer him the spectacle of their intimacy.

The conceit behind the 1989 edition, “Presque Rien Avec Filles,” is that a concealed composer/photographer records some girls having a picnic. If that sounds potentially passive and prurient, it ends up being neither. The opening nature sounds are soon elbowed aside by isolated words and exhalations, which are in turn blasted by bursts of a very late ’80s-sounding drum machine. The beats are frankly obnoxious, but they still mark the piece as a progression; rather than make music that retreads the methods and material of what by then had been recognized as a masterpiece, he used the sounds of the moment, both cool and uncool, in ways that drew attention to the original piece’s constructed nature. Because if this “Presque Rien” has a drum machine strafing the bugs, how much of the original piece’s apparent naturalism had Ferrari manufactured? — Dusted Magazine

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