“What permits us to love one another and the earth we inhabit is that we and it are impermanent,” Cage as soon as wrote. “We obsolesce. Life’s everlasting. Individuals aren’t. A mushroom lasts only for a very short time.” This line was anthologized, together with a lot of Cage’s work on mushrooms, in “John Cage: A Mycological Foray,” an artwork e-book revealed final 12 months. As a companion, its writer, Atelier Éditions, additionally compiled a boxed set of playing cards entitled “Every Mushroom Is a Good Mushroom,” pairing Cage’s personal recipes with unique artwork. Several of the accompanying works are by Ma, from her “Mushrooms & Friends 2.” One, a composed portrait of 4 kinds of mushroom (Amanita pantherina, Hypholoma fasciculare, Amanita muscaria, and Coprinus comatus) organized atop a table-like double Hemipholiota populnea, tells a whole story in a single body. The mushrooms (which Ma foraged from a Soviet-era break in Berlin’s Grunewald forest) lean and twist expressively. Despite the artificiality of the association, the scene feels in some way candid, a snapshot of a non-public second—mushrooms in mid-argument, or mid-song.



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