With increasing frequency, composers of instrumental music claim to be specifically inspired by a poem or painting, a drama or sculpture, transforming the essence of this art work's features and message into their own medium the musical language.
How does the knowledge of such a transformation from one medium into the other inform our understanding of the musical work? In this ground-breaking study Siglind Bruhn makes a case for a musical genre hitherto hidden under the term program music. She defines her subject matter in relation to the term ekphrasis, which is used by literary scholars for poems responding to works of visual art. Bruhn develops a clear methodology and a precise set of criteria, which she employs to situate musical ekphrasis within the aesthetics discourse.