Gruff Rhys 1970-Wales; Musician, filmmaker, Artist.
I’ve included Gruff Rhys for his use of text as visuals, at his live shows.
Rhys uses cue cards as a method for communicating with the audience, they are sometimes comedic, sometimes thought provoking or sometimes instructions for the audience. The cue cards started off with simple requests such as “applause” and then graduated on to more absurd demands such as “Wild Abandon” The cue cards have formed part of a book called “Resist Phony Encores” (I am firmly in the no encore camp. I don’t see the point of them, they are not spontaneous they are built into the setlist).
Rhys works in collaboration with artist Mark James and together they have produced a book described as a memoir in the form of text, graphics and mass communication. It is said to appeal to fans of the Olivetti typewriter.( I once saw 3 of these typewriters going cheap in a charity shop, I’ve regretted not purchasing one everyday since.)
I like the idea of text in music, I know its nothing new, but I like the bold graphic visuals. I’m also interested in the communal response to the text from the audience, how the text influences the audience. Which I wouldn’t necessarily get a sense of unless I stalked people viewing in an art gallery.
I also really like the work Mark James and his studio produce. Here are some recent works that I’ve found inspiration from.