If you’re in San Francisco this summer, you’re a lucky bug. Because if you get down to the Center for New Music right now, you can see an exhibition of experimental musical instruments created by the Swedish Surrealist Johannes Bergmark.

And even better than that, if you can be there for the closing reception on 15 August, Johannes will be there in person to discuss and demonstrate some of the instruments.

The exhibition is called “How Do You Invent Something?” Here’s what Johannes says about it on the Center for New Music website:

The title refers to my noticing that every instrument I made has had a different kind of idea as a source. They are examples of dreams, whims, discoveries, chance occurrences, materials, playing methods etc. Funnily enough, never has the sound come first. A large part of the explanation for the multiplicity of sources of invention is an improvisatory practice and a surrealist, poetic attitude where playful, associative, analogic thinking comes before the goal-oriented approach that might follow.†††

I’ve had the privilege of seeing Johannes perform many times (and I’ve even performed with him myself once or twice, which was quite a trip). If you’re not familiar with what he does, check out this recent video of him in action.

I wish I could get over to the States to attend this event, because I know the exhibition will be wonderful, and the demonstration of the instruments will be amazing. Don’t miss it if you’re in the neighbourhood.

Johannes Bergmark: How Do You Invent Something? runs until 29 August at the Center for New Music, 55 Taylor Street, San Francisco CA 94102, Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm. The closing reception is on Thursday 15 August at 6pm.

Photo of Johannes Bergmark from the closing reception Facebook event page.
Video from Johannes Bergmark’s YouTube channel.

Take a peek behind the veil.

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