For two years I have been joining four distinct and lofty disciplines in a somewhat reductive, experimental sandbox. The Germans have a name for this idea: ”gesamtkunstwerk”, or ‘total’ artwork.

I am trained foremost as a visual artist. I attended The School of the Art Institute of Chicago with emphasis in drawing. Music writing was for me self-taught, primarily for guitar and piano. Labanotation (a form of dance notation) is totally new to me. And writing, my first love, has long lingered in the background always looking for a way back into view. Only recently have I been merging these loves into gesamtkunstwerk.

Given my desire to work in these four disciplines simultaneously I am forced to look at what they share, how they may be reduced or simplified, and how to create objects that don’t thin out or disregard how difficult it is to master them individually. I am drawn to the things they share and their differences and how, after research into their underlying structures, they can speak to a shared understanding of The Arts.

-NSH, 2018