samedi 14 mai 2011

Voluntary Poverty.

John Cage, Note concerning 4'33, 1960.

The idea that minimalism is based on an exclusively Japanese view of the world is just as inadequate a view of minimalism as presenting it as some sort of offshoot of modernism. Yet Japan does offer a distinct aesthetic sense; one that, after living there for several years, has certainly couloured my view of the world, and there have always been those outside Japan who have chosen to look for what the Japanese call Wabi, the quality of voluntary poverty. Wabi is an aesthetic and moral principle, advocating a life of quietness and a withdrawal from worldliness. It values the beauty of simplicity and austerity, and looks for the serenity and transcendence that comes with it. Wabi represents the view that an excess of possessions and consumption is a burden that actually diminishes rather than enriches life. An absence of clutter provides room to think and perhaps even to understand. 

John Pawson, Minimum in Sturm der Ruhe. What is Architecture? Architeckturzentrum Wien, 2001, p.140.

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