Proposal (/prəˈpōzəl/) noun 1. A plan or
suggestion, especially a formal or written one, put forward for
consideration or discussion by others. 2 An offer of marriage.
Presenting realizations by Will Montgomery and Joseph
Clayton Mills of two compositions by Ryoko Akama, inscriptions
is the second in a series of releases documenting Akama’s
“proposal” scores. The use of this word, “proposal,” is deliberate and
crucial. It makes clear that Akama’s compositions
are suggestions, put forward for consideration and exploration, rather than
directives to be obeyed. As with acceptance,
released by Suppedaneum in 2016, each proposal in
the series draws on a similar compositional vocabulary—arrows, shaded
boxes, and fragments of text—but each is also subtly different, written to
reflect the particular character of the musician to whom it is dedicated.
The scores themselves are open and allusive, occupying an ambiguous middle
ground between drawing, poetry, and instructions, and the question of how
these elements are to be assembled and understood is left unresolved. Or,
rather, it is left to the imagination and understanding of each performer.
Each score thus originates as a kind of portrait but, in the act of
realization, becomes just as much a self-portrait. What each performer brings
to Akama’s proposals—how they chose to recognize
themselves in what she has given them, and how they accept, resist, or
reinscribe her compositions—becomes as crucial as what she offers them.
This release, presented together in a
wooden veneer envelope, includes an archival CD-R containing realizations
of each piece, one copy of each of the two proposals, a brief text from
each performer describing their approach to Akama’s
score, and an additional informational sheet providing credits and track
This is Suppedaneum
1. a proposal - six, for Will
2. a proposal - seven, for Joseph Clayton Mills [27:00]
All compositions by Ryoko Akama
Mastered by A.F. Jones at Laminal
Audio, San Diego, California.
Ryoko Akama is a composer and performer whose
work, ranging from text compositions to sound installations, pursues
minimal, reductive, cumulative, and contemplative experiences in sonic art
practice. She directs the melange edition label
and is coeditor of the independent publisher mumei.
Joseph Clayton Mills Is a musician, artist, and writer
who lives and works in Chicago, where his collaborators have included Adam Sonderberg and Steven Hess (as Haptic), Michael Vallera
(as Maar), Noé Cuéllar
(as Partial), Sylvain Chaveau, Jason Stein,
Michael Pisaro, and Olivia Block, among many
others. His recordings have appeared on numerous labels, including Another
Timbre, FSS, and Entr’acte. In 2013, in collaboration with Noé Cuéllar, he launched the
label Suppedaneum to focus on releasing scores
and their realizations.
Will Montgomery is a UK-based musician and writer
whose audio releases include Crystal
at the Lips (Organized Music from Thessaloniki, 2015), Thames Water (Every Contact Leaves a
Trace, 2014), Heygate
(Winds Measure Recordings, 2013), ‘2009/5’
(Cathnor, 2010), Legend (with Brian Marley, Entr’acte, 2009) and Non-collaboration (with Heribert Friedl, NVO, 2008).
1. Performed by Will Montgomery
2. Performed by Joseph Clayton Mills
recordings, bbs, cups, bowl, microfiche reader)
“Originally influenced by
Sol LeWitt, I began to study the idea of
sequences in shape, color, and direction. Each piece includes additional
comments to support my proposal for the performer to refuse or to accept.”