Home > Exhibitions > 1991 > John Cage

John Cage
Changing Installation, 1991
Mattress Factory's Collaboration with
The Carnegie International
500 Sampsonia Way, fourth floor
With its distinctive space, the Mattress Factory was a constituent of the 1991 Carnegie International, the 51st in a series of contemporary art exhibitions of The Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Every day the camera, positioned according to another script, made a chronicle of the changing gallery, registering the impact of an additional element: the natural light.

John Cage planned the installation for the full fourth floor of 500 Sampsonia Way. He made a grid of the gallery floor and walls, and assigned a number to each grid space. A computer program generated random patterns for placement of the wall-hung works and the chairs.

The plan for the exhibition blocked out instructions. Each day the curator hung the 15 works of art and placed the chairs designated by the plan.

This is part of John Cage's script for the placement of art works, showing instructions for the first 6 days. The full script covered 103 days.

The first column indicates the day. The other typed numbers represent the works to be presented, the handprinted numbers their positions on the wall. On Day #1, for example, the curator placed work #5 in position #30, work #9 in position #44, and so on.

This is from John Cage's script for the selection, placement and position of the chairs, showing the first 6 days. The full script covered 103 days.

The first number represents the position on the floor, and the second number the angle of the chair. (The red handwritten letters identify the chairs by style: Arne Jacobson, Bertoia, Stick, Empire, Steel, 30s Lawn.) On Day #1, Chair #1 was placed in position #62 on the floor, at an angle of 113 degrees. Chair #3 was not used.

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