Xenia | John Abram & Barbara Sutherland

Xenia is a word for a form of still-life painting from Ancient Rome. The text is my description of a famous mural from Pompeii: 

Apples, grapes, pears and pomegranates lie in a glass bowl on a raised block. 
A split pomegranate to the left, an apple to the right. 
A lower block supports a jar of dried fruit, and an amphora leans against it. 

The text was translated into Latin by Jim Apricus. 

The music shows the influence of some composition techniques of Ars Subtilior, a short-lived (1380-1420) style from southern France and northern Italy characterised by an extreme independence of contrapuntal line resulting from syncopated and polyrhythmic parts. 

The video was made by Barbara Sutherland, an artist who works with textiles, print and digital media. 

Xenia was written in 2005 for Electra, who performed it for the first time on their Electra & Film tour of Canada in January 2006.


© John Abram 2017