So... I'm spending a rainy day beating some old Samuel Beckett into my gray matter, and stumble upon the following:
"To avoid the expansion of the commonplace is not enough; the highest art reduces significance in order to obtain that inexplicable bombshell perfection."
The quote relates to a tortured character averse to chatter, but whose relative quiet imbues him with a "commanding brilliance." I immediately began drawing parallels to magicians "reducing the significance" of - let's say - unnatural moves, behaviors, etc. to create an environment (context, expectations, etc.) conducive to astonishment. A few lines later, I read:
"Just as the creative artist must be partly illusionist, our whispering prestidigitator was partly artist."
Of all people, Samuel Beckett "got it" in 1929's Assumption. Vernon would have been 35...
All beginners in magic should address their questions here.
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Did he ever do the sponge ball trick?
Ah! A bit like the invisible deck trick......................