Carmina Burana (or Burana Codex) Latin for “Songs from Beuern” is a manuscript of 254 poems from the 11th – 13th century. Carl Orff made a scenic cantata in 1936 based on 24 of the poems.
Much of the structure is based on the idea of Rota Fortunae. The wheel belongs to the goddess Fortuna, who spins it at random, changing the positions of those on the wheel. There are four stages: “Regnabo, Regno, Regnavi, Sum sine regno”. (I shall reign, I reign, I have reigned, I am without a realm).
Within each scene, or within a single movement, the wheel turns, joy turning to bitterness, and hope turning to grief. “O Fortuna” completes this circle, forming a frame for the work through being both the opening and closing movements.
This book is an ever continuing wheel, a system of life that will follow us forever, but it’s also an ending story: the life of a man changed by the turns of the wheel. The laser cut images show the thread of the story while the texts, translated into English, show the deeper emotions going with it. The titles are kept in their original languages.