My name is Moby, and I’m here at the Tate Modern. It’s one of my favourite museums on the planet. I’m going to walk around and find a few of my favourite pieces and maybe talk about them a little.
When I was growing up there was a book that I loved, and it was about these kids who lived in the Museum of Natural History in New York, and ever since I’ve had this fantasy of being left alone in a museum by myself after hours. So this is sort of a realisation of that fantasy. I’ve been around art just as much as I’ve been around music. It’s a really good question, how art would affect my musical life. I think that the answer would be really self-involved, and I’d end up sounding like Grandpa Simpson if he were a grad student at Cornell! So, to say succinctly, art has had a big impact on my musical life.
This is Arshille Gorky, Waterfall. He is from Armenia, but towards the end of his life he moved to Connecticut, which is where I grew up, and he did quite pastoral work, and this is one of the examples of that. On one hand it’s quite decorative, and it’s really lyrical, but it has such a darkness to it. It might also be informed by, historically, the knowledge that he killed himself soon after this painting was made. So if he had gone on to live a long, happy life, maybe this would seem like a joyful, happy, celebratory painting; but I look at it and I see something that has such an element of pathos to it. I also really like where this is in the museum, because it’s rare that a museum has windows. It’s about water; it’s a waterfall, and it’s overlooking the river. Like, with some work it could detract from it, but in this case I think it actually makes it more impactful.
There are a lot of wonderful things in the Tate collection, and this is one of my favourites; Richard Serra, Trip Hammer. And I know a lot of people might walk through this room and look at that, and think that maybe it’s a platform where some real art is going to go on top of it. To me it’s so perfect; the way it defines the space, and the way you have the most basic materials. I mean, it’s two pieces of sheet metal, and it’s light, and it’s elegant, but it also sort of radiates – I’m speaking subjectively – but to me it radiates primordial menace. I like art that feels impossible. It’s always that sense of, ‘When is it going to fall down?’ The adolescent me just thinks it’s really cool, because it’s so big and so heavy, and so powerful. It’s amazing.