‘It’s John. John Cage.’

Exhibition gallery of the Department of Prints, Drawings and Photographs, Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany

21 July - 11 November 2012

This year John Cage would have celebrated his 100th birthday. 

The Staatsgalerie Stuttgart is delighted to be able to honour this unusual artist with an exhibition of its wide-ranging holdings of his work. The American artist is best known as a composer and music theorist. 


John Cage as a composer and an artist

Cage was not only a driving force in the history of experimental music, he also inspired some of the key trends of 1960s visual art, among them Happening, Fluxus and Pop Art. His work brought different forms of art together. Cage’s scores had always been visually elaborate, and by the late 1960s the composer began to make a name for himself as a visual artist as well. 


John Cage in the Staatsgalerie collection - Sohm Archive

The Staatsgalerie Stuttgart is fortunate enough to have drawings, prints and a three-dimensional piece by John Cage that span the years from 1969 to 1990. The Department of Prints, Drawings and Photographs has been acquiring works by the artist since 1981.

Further works by John Cage – primarily books and archival material about the artist and his work – entered the collection through the acquisition of the Sohm Archive in 1981. Some of these works are presented here for the first time.

By showing this material alongside a selection of books and prints, the exhibition provides a unique insight into John Cage’s multifaceted visual oeuvre. The presentation is complemented by a programme of events featuring performances of several of Cage’s compositions. Exhibition and events programme converge to highlight different aspects of the work of one of the most charismatic artists of the twentieth century: composer, visual artist, writer and passionate mushroom hunter.

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