The Art of Noises  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Art of Noises (L'arte dei Rumori) is a Futurist manifesto, written by Luigi Russolo in a 1913 letter to friend and Futurist composer Francesco Balilla Pratella. In it, Russolo argues that the human ear has become accustomed to the speed, energy, and noise of the urban industrial soundscape; furthermore, this new sonic palette requires a new approach to musical instrumentation and composition. He proposes a number of conclusions about how electronics and other technology will allow futurist musicians to "substitute for the limited variety of timbres that the orchestra possesses today the infinite variety of timbres in noises, reproduced with appropriate mechanisms".

The Art of Noises is considered to be one of the most important and influential texts in 20th century musical aesthetics. It was published on March 11 1913.

In the manifesto, Russolo stated that the had given modern men a greater capacity to appreciate more complex sounds. Russolo found traditional melodic music confining and envisioned noise music as its future replacement. He designed and constructed a number of noise-generating devices called Intonarumori and assembled a noise orchestra to perform with them. A performance of his Primo gran concerto futurista per intonarumori was staged at at the Teatro Dal Verme in 1914. None of his intoning devices have survived, though recently some have been reconstructed and used in performances.

See also

industrial revolution




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "The Art of Noises" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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