Sometimes I really wish I still lived in New York. April is one of those times, because the Horticultural Society of New York is putting on not one but two brilliant events that I would not miss if I didn’t live 2,000 miles away.
Event #1: Healing Nature Forum: Horticulture as Therapy
This event features a stellar line-up of speakers, including a keynote by Virginia Burt, Principal of Visionscapes Landscape Architects, Inc.
Visit the HSNY website for more details.
Event #2: The exhibition, By leaves or play of sunlight. John Cage: Artist and Naturalist
April 2 – May 16, 2014
Curated by Chris Murtha
Wednesday, April 2nd, 6:00pm to 8:00pm
The Horticultural Society of New York
148 West 37th Street, 13th Floor
New York, NY 10018
Presented with the John Cage Trust and the New York Mycological Society
This exhibition of plant-inspired artworks by John Cage (1912-1992) examines how he applied his chance operations to the natural world. Cage was already well established as a pioneering composer when he became fascinated with mushrooms in the 1950s, but he was so committed to this pursuit, he co-founded the present incarnation of the New York Mycological Society. Nature was central to Cage’s visual art practice; he found particular inspiration in the study of mushrooms and Thoreau’s journal sketches, and his materials included river rocks, smoke, and medicinal plants. The centerpiece of this exhibition is Mushroom Book (1972), a portfolio of lithographs created with mycologist Alexander H. Smith and artist Lois Long, whose botanical illustrations offer a stark contrast to Cage’s prints of overlapping handwritten texts. The show will also include prints that incorporate Thoreau’s drawings and selections from Edible Drawings (1990), a series of handmade papers made with ingredients from the artist’s macrobiotic diet.
Visit HSNY website to download the press release, which is written as a mesostic poem, a form that Cage used throughout his career, including in Mushroom Book.