John Cage: Every Day is a Good Day

Past exhibition
Hayward Gallery Touring

Installation View by artist,  John Cage at HAyward Touring Exhibition
John Cage: Every Day is a Good Day (installation view), a Hayward Touring Exhibition, BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Newcastle upon Tyne, 2010. Image courtesy BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. Photo: Colin Davison.

The first major retrospective in the UK of the visual art of the US composer and artist John Cage (1912–1992)

The exhibition was conceived by Jeremy Millar and organised with the close support and guidance of the John Cage Trust, in collaboration with BALTIC. 

Inspired by Cage’s use of chance-determined scores, the exhibition differed markedly from a traditional touring exhibition. 

The procedure that Cage often employed, using an I Ching-like computer programme was used to determine the layout of the exhibition at each venue, with the position of each work being determined through chance operations. 

This resulted in the works being displayed at different heights and in groups that no curator would ordinarily choose, with such chance encounters between works giving a sense of them as being part of an ongoing creative process, rather than the result of a single creative moment. 

Much as Cage removed his intention from his own works through chance operations, it was hoped that the curator’s intention could similarly be removed from this exhibition.

With more than 100 works on paper, including drawings, watercolours and prints, the exhibition focused on Cage’s visual art, while a documentary section and events programmed by each venue explored other aspects of his practice - music especially, but also writing, dance, performance and film.

Exhibition venues

This exhibition toured to the following venues:

  • BALTIC, Gateshead
  • Kettle's Yard, Cambridge
  • Museum and Art Gallery, Huddersfield
  • Hunterian Art Gallery, Glasgow
  • De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill on Sea
  • Project Space, Hayward Gallery
Touring exhibitions

Find out more about our touring exhibitions programme, including exhibitions on tour and available to visit or hire.