About John Holland

John Holland is a composer and Professor Emeritus in the Studio for Interrelated Media at Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston. In the early 1980's, he co-founded Nature and Inquiry, an artists group that meets weekly to discuss ideas in art and science. The group has presented work at the MIT Media Lab, the Harvard Smithsonian Observatory, Habitat Institute, The Copley Gallery in Boston, to name a few. For the past 20 years he has taught a class that introduces artists to leading-edge ideas in science. In 2001 the Boston Globe reported that Nature, Science and Art was the most popular class at the College.

by John Holland

The Complete Short Texts  for Speaking Voice consists of ten different sets of texts which accumulate incrementally, beginning with A Short Text and concluding with 10 Short Texts.

The substance of the texts includes a variety of subjects ranging from language, speech,  listening, the origins of art and music, and perception, to biology, physics, evolution, creativity, morality, death, and transcendence. Overall, the content of the texts reflects connections between nature, science, and art.

Spread-out over the various sets of texts are ten True or False texts and ten A. I., or artificial intelligence, Models. The A. I. Models were designed as a means of testing the feasibility of automating a particular human characteristic or feature, and as a practical method of understanding or apprehending complex human behavior and perception. My ultimate intention was to describe complex human functions with a degree of detail sufficient to program an ‘intelligent’ machine to accomplish these functions.

The ten sets of texts were written between 1990 and 1997. The complete set of texts was re-edited and compiled in 1999.

J. H.

Lexington, Massachusetts, 1999

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