New Release:
JOHN CAGE: A MYCOLOGICAL FORAY – Variations on Mushrooms

“I have come to the conclusion that much can be learned about music by devoting
oneself to the mushroom.” – JOHN CAGE, 1954

Press Contact: Alexandra Fanning Communications / / (347) 468-073

John Cage: A Mycological Foray – Variations on Mushrooms, a monograph exploring the American composer’s fascination with mushrooms. Hardcover Slipcase, 2 Volume Set, 224 pages including 198 b&w and 25 color photographs, 8 x 10.75 inches. Printed sustainably in Italy

(New York, NY, June 2020) – Atelier Éditions is pleased to announce John Cage: A Mycological Foray – Variations on Mushrooms, a monograph exploring the American composer’s fascination with mushrooms, releasing early June 2020.

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.

About the artist : John Cage (1912–92) 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.

Special Features

Mushroom Book : Volume II of the box set is comprised of the first ever full reproduction of 1972’s Mushroom Book. The portfolio artist’s book is reproduced at 75% scale for easier handling, all while keeping the oversized feel of the original. 

Published in an edition of 75, Mushroom Book consists of 20 unnumbered lithographs with translucent Japanese-paper overlays in a large denim portfolio. Populating the loose leaves are mycological anecdotes; visual, poetic, factual. The book is a collaborative endeavor of John Cage, Alexander Smith, and Lois Long—a dialogue between the anecdotal and analytical, art and ecology. 

Apple Paper : Inspired by Cage’s 1990 series Edible Drawings, several illustrations he authored upon paper which could be recycled as food, an idea catalyzed by the sight of impoverished South American families boiling ink from newspapers then eating the recovered pulp, the section of Volume I housing MUSHROOMS et Variationes has been printed upon environmental Cartamela paper; a paper made from the industrial waste of apple processing.


WORKS by John Cage

CENTRAL ESSAY by Kingston Trinder

ADD. TEXTS by Isabelle Bucklow

EDITED by Ananda Pellerin

PUBLISHED by Atelier Éditions


Edition of 4500

ISBN # 978-1-7336220-0-4

Hardcover Slipcase, 2 Volume Set

224 pages including 198 b&w and 25 color photographs 

8 x 10.75 inches

Printed sustainably in Italy

Retail: $55 (US)


Limited Edition of 500

Box set including first edition book  and our artist anthology Every Mushroom Is a Good Mushroom

Only available through the publisher directly

Retail: $55 (US)

About Atelier Éditions

Atelier Éditions is a limited-edition publishing house based between Los Angeles, California and London, United Kingdom. Authoring archival monographs, contemporary art books, and exploratory printed matter, the atelier regularly curates  exhibitions, envisages cultural programming, initiates seminars, workshops, and enacts memorable collaborations.

For more information and high resolution images please contact Alexandra Fanning: +1 (347) 468 – 0735

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Interior Images

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*IMAGE CREDITS: Photographer credits vary and are in the link here