William Basinski

William Basinski

Bubbles of Eternity

Breathe, listen and float away in one of composer William Basinski's timeless amniotic bubbles. Let your dreams lead the way, or as Basinski puts it: "Sometimes we all need to take a chill pill."

Interview with American avant-garde musician and artist William Basinski about his work, and why he feels we all need to turn off the email and the cell phone, and find our way into a meditative listening mood.

Basinski explains how he works as an artist, and defines his music as ”experimental, electronic, ambient music” based on obsolete technology. Basinski makes analogue tape loops with no beginning or end, thus creating ”a timeless amniotic bubble that you can float in.” He also talks of his live performances, explaining that he is extremely concentrated on listening intensely to the music, the room and the resonance, while feeling the crowd: ”The tendency when you are under pressure like that, is to try and do too much, but you have to fight that tendency, in order to listen,” he adds.

William Basinski (b. 1958) is a classically trained musician and composer who has been working in experimental media for over 30 years. His 4-disc masterwork 'The Disintegration Loops' from 2004 received international critical acclaim. Installations and films made in collaboration with artist-filmmaker James Elaine have been presented in festivals and museums internationally, and Basinski has recently created music for the Robert Wilson opera 'The Life and Death of Marina Abramovic' which toured Europe in 2012 and North America in 2013. He lives in New York City.

William Basinski was interviewed by Alexander Vesterlund at CLICK festival in Elsinore, Denmark in May 2013.

Camera: Klaus Elmer
Edited by: Kamilla Bruus
Music by: William Basinski
Copyright: Louisiana Channel, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, 2013

Supported by Nordea-fonden

  • Laurie Anderson

    Letter Exchange with JFK

    “Dear Senator Kennedy. I really admire the way you’re running your campaign. I’m running for president of my student council, can you send me some tips?” Find out what the soon-to-be president John F. Kennedy replied to a young Laurie Anderson’s letter.

  • Rachel Kushner

    The Final Sentence

    “I know the sensibility of what the final line is going to do – for me and for the reader.” Watch American novelist Rachel Kushner discuss the impact of the final line, and how she dislikes endings that “produce a sensation of an ellipsis.”

  • Colm Tóibín

    The Sentence Starting a Book

    In this short video, Colm Tóibín – known for acclaimed novels such as ‘Brooklyn’ and ‘The Master’ – discusses the important function of a novel’s first sentence as a catalyst for the rest of the book.

  • Doug Aitken

    The Nomadic Studio

    In this interview featuring extracts from Doug Aitken’s visually stunning videos, the American multimedia artist offers insight into his captivating work and how he learns from “watching things become a car crash in slow motion.”

  • Richard Ford

    Art is Heavy Lifting

    Watch Richard Ford on escaping the ‘southern writer’ label and how writing a novel is satisfyingly hard work: “Why should it be simple? Why shouldn’t it be a clerical nightmare? Why shouldn’t it take four years? That’s what I want it to be – a masterpiece.”

  • Joshua Oppenheimer

    Advice to the Young

    “Don’t listen to anyone who tells you how it should be done.” The commended American director Joshua Oppenheimer – nominated twice for an Oscar for Best Documentary Feature – here shares his powerful advice for aspiring filmmakers.

  • Superflex

    Why We Flooded McDonald’s

    What motivates a Danish artists' group to make a movie where one of the most famous American fast food restaurants is inexplicably flooded? Superflex here comment on the content of their “post-apocalyptic movie” ‘Flooded McDonald’s’.

  • Peter Zumthor

    Different Kinds of Silence

    We visited Peter Zumthor – one of the world’s leading architects – in his studio in Switzerland. In this extensive and rare biographical video interview he tells the captivating story of his childhood, his studies in NYC and his parents’ strong influence.

  • Rachel Kushner

    Putting in the Hours

    “There’s something about habit that’s elemental.” American author Rachel Kushner has no doubt that consistent work on a novel is key. You never know when a moment of inspiration is going to hit – but when it does, you have to be there.

  • Margarethe von Trotta

    A Group of Rebels

    Award-winning film director Margarethe von Trotta – who has worked closely with the legendary directors Fassbinder and Schlöndorff – here shares the story of her winding road to becoming one of the leading contemporary German filmmakers.

  • Anna Bjerger

    It's All About Process

    “The painting moves me forward – and I follow.” Meet Swedish Anna Bjerger, who wants to preserve the excitement of painting, and who paints from photographs, feeling that she can somehow rescue images “that would otherwise disappear.”

  • 3 Artists

    On Yayoi Kusama’s Phalli’s Field

    An absorbing installation of mirrors and soft polka dots by Yayoi Kusama. Join artists Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen, Astrid Svangren and Alexander Tovborg as they explore what Kusama herself describes as “a sublime, miraculous field of phalluses.”