Cage Does Cage: Watch Nicholas Cage perform 4'33" by John Cage (VIDEO)

Cage Does Cage: Watch Nicolas "Perform" John's Landmark Composition

Cage Does Cage: Watch Nicolas "Perform" John's Landmark Composition

Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog
April 10 2012 1:04 PM

Did You See This? 4'33" of Silent Nicolas Cage

Silent Nicolas Cage
A still of Nicolas Cage being silent in "Cage Does Cage"

When Slate film critic Dana Stevens considered "the baroque, hyper-mannered performances" of Nicolas Cage two years ago, she noted a common thread in the high and lowbrow projects he pursued (he rarely goes in for straight middlebrow drama, she pointed out). "Both," Stevens argued, "evince the taste of a man drawn to extremes of experience."

Now the artist Adam Lucas has isolated an extreme element of Cage's performances that rarely elicits critical comment: total silence. Lucas strung together four minutes and 33 seconds of wordless moments from across Cage's oeuvre to create a "performance" of John Cage's landmark experimental composition, 4'33". Even when he isn't speaking, the "mannered weirdness" of Nicolas Cage comes through loud and clear. Enjoy.

David Haglund is the literary editor of NewYorker.com.