There is also the Karlheinz Stockhausen contoversy … Words can be as harmful as a hand can be. Stockhausen claiming 911 as a work of art was taken with so much offence that his 4 day festival was cancelled in response to his statements. The full article is written in German, so the link above is not really the best source for what he said in the interview that ignited his controversy. Here is the original to save digging through links if someone wants to read the interview in German.
Given Stockhausen’s impact on modern music, and the reflections of his influence by others I’ve listened to regularly for the last several years, I think it will be very difficult to remove his influence from my own attempts at doing something new. Is it impossible for the work to “stand on its own” when a person as influential as Stockhausen falls from grace so late in his career?
Are speech and action viewed with different rules when it comes to offensive or “unsafe” behaviour and censoring oneself? I can speak for myself through experience, that very damaging, abusive words often have been accompanied by physical violence and in no certain order. The effects of the 2 kinds of abuse for me are fairly similar in the long term.
When I have thought about these kinds of questions lately, I think of paintings on the walls of caves. Done perhaps by Hominidae who had limited language to debate from, physical violence was likely a regular occurrence in daily family life and if enough years go by, the art ends up standing on its own in a dark cave waiting for some one from the future with a shovel to rediscover. We will never know the full truth about the lives of artists or their words.