Illustration by Lois Long for Mushroom Book

I have come to the conclusion that much can be learned about music by devoting oneself to the mushroom.

– John Cage, 1954

PERSPECTIVES – John Cage: A Mycological Foray

November 18, 2020 at 1 PM EDT


A conversation with Atelier Éditions’ collaborative team and Laura Kuhn, Director of the John Cage Trust

The newly published John Cage: A Mycological Foray draws readers across the idiosyncratic, mushroom-suffused, innermost landscape of celebrated American composer John Cage. Upon the remarkable journey with Cage, one encounters assorted photographs, compositions, and contemplations; all in the very same unexpected fashion one encounters various flora and fungi species while mushroom foraging. Volume I encompasses Cage’s mycological-oriented Indeterminacy stories, Diary excerpts, and essays; and the complete transcript of Cage’s 1983 performance, MUSHROOMS et Variationes. Volume II offers the inaugural reproduction of Cage’s 1972 portfolio, Mushroom Book; authored in collaboration with illustrator Lois Long and botanist Alexander H. Smith.

John Cage (1912–1992) was an American composer and music theorist. Recognized as a pioneer of indeterminacy in music, electroacoustic music, and a leading figure of the postwar avant-garde, his influence extended to the realms of dance, poetry, performance, and visual art. John Cage: A Mycological Foray is developed in collaboration with the John Cage Trust.

Atelier Éditions is an independent publishing house and creative consultancy established in 2015. Developing collaborative projects across an array of disciplines, the atelier offers curatorial and editorial consultation, creative direction, content creation, and print innovation. Authoring archival monographs, contemporary art books, catalogue raisonnés, and exploratory printed matter, Atelier Éditions regularly curates exhibitions, and envisages cultural programming. Joining us for this program are Pascale Georgiev, Publisher & Editorial Director, and Kingston Trinder, Author, Publisher, & Entrepreneur.