In the 1960s, and era of innovation in art, the term Fluxus—a name taken from a Latin word meaning "to flow", arose like a rising star amid storms of praise and criticism. Joining the movement, a network of international artists, composers and designers blended various…
Perloff (2002) quotes Higgins,
Fluxus...was not a movement; it has not stated consistent programme or manifesto which the work must match, and it did not propose to move art or our awareness of art from point A to point B. The very name, Fluxus, suggests change, being in a state of flux. The idea was that it would always reflect the most exciting avant-garde tendencies of a given time or moment—the Fluxattitude.
It is perhaps easier to describe the movement as what it was not rather than what it was. Perloff (2002) writes, “Fluxus was not, as is usually thought, an inconoclastic avant-garde movement but a way of life, a ‘fertile field for multiple intelligence interactions’ (H. Higgins 193) that has strong pedagogical potential”.
Repice (no date) in his paper on the subject views the definition from another angle “...as a series of organized activities and ‘as a way of doing thing’ that nonetheless coalesced around key people, places, and events. When I speak of Fluxus, I defer the question of whether it was a “movement” or not and attempt to think of it as a tradition or sensibility embodied by certain people at certain times”.
The origins of Fluxus lie in the many concepts explored by avant-garde composer John Cage as reflected in his dissonant experimental music of the 1950s. As described rather esoterically in The Fluxus blog (2010), Cage popularized a form incorporating “... acrostic poem in which the ‘hidden’ or included word, phrase, or name is seen vertically in a central spine instead of at the beginning or end...” While the concept may be familiar to those who study music, Cage’s importance to the Fluxus movement may be more easily understood when explained through his now famous original experimental piano composition piece, 4’ 33” (1952), in which the pianist sits at the piano but does not play for exactly four minutes and ...
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