Above: John Cage, River Rocks and Smoke: 4-11-90 #1, 27.75 X 42.5 in. watercolour and "smoke" on rag paper. Collection The John Cage Trust at Bard.
16 April - 5 June 2011
Every Day is a Good Day
This extraordinary exhibition is the first major retrospective in the UK of the visual art of American composer and artist John Cage (1912–1992).
John Cage was one of the leading avant-garde composers of the 20th century, most famous perhaps for his silent work of 1952, 4'33". Cage was closely connected with art and artists throughout his long career.
This exhibition presents over 100 works including watercolours, drawings and prints, spanning his whole visual art career, including his Ryoanji series. In these works he drew around the outlines of stones scattered randomly across the paper or printing plate, in one case drawing around 3,375 individually placed stones. He also experimented with burning or soaking the paper, and applied complex, painstaking procedures at each stage of the printmaking process.
Every Day is a Good Day was arranged using a randomising computer programme inspired by the I Ching – an ancient Chinese text and philosophy that Cage often used to create his work. This system, based on chance operations, mean that works are displayed at different heights and in groups and spaces that a curator would not necessarily choose. Such chance encounters between works give a sense of an ongoing creative process. The exhibition was re-hung once again, according to the I Ching, on Tuesday 10th May.
A publication Every Day is a Good Day; The Visual Art of John Cage will be available from the De La Warr Pavilion shop for £14.99. The sixth DLWP Magazine is free and available to pick up in the Pavilion.
Every Day is a Good Day is conceived by Jeremy Millar and organised by Hayward Touring exhibitions in collaboration with BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art and the John Cage Trust.There are over one hundred works in the show including drawings, watercolours and prints.
Many cutting-edge composers and performers cite Cage as a major influence. In recognition of this, The Pavilion has curated a nod to Cage; a seven-week programme of music, performances and installations in response to Cage's work and ideas. Events and installations take place throughout the Pavilion, most are free of charge.