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The central concept behind Alvin Lucier's Memory Space is the representation of another time and place through the use of a new set of sounds. In his instructions, Lucier asks the performer/s to go to an environment and record by any means (notes on paper, graphics, audio recording or by memory) the sound situations that are present, then, at any later time, in a different space, attempt to recreate that situation. The purpose of the work is to avoid elaboration or embellishment, but given that any action of recreation is still relative, a process of navigation through an excess of material, it becomes an impression, on occasion strikingly clear, at other times lost in a haze, with the very attempt to avoid narrative providing one.
“Go to outside environments (urban, rural, hostilc, bcnign) and record by any means (memory, written notations, tape recordings) the sound situations of those environments. Returning to an inside performance space at any later time, re-create, solely bv means of your voices and instruments and with the aid of your memory devices (without additions, deletions, improvisation, interpretation) those outside sound situations.”