Music from an Unknown Source

Inspired by Sigmar Polke's gouaches of the touring exhibition "Music of Unexplained Origin", the Dutch singer and composer Blaudzun searches for a "Music of Unexplained Origin" for the Cobra Museum. The exhibition presents his new compositions together with Polke's works. The two artists combine diversity and an experimental approach in their art.

From the early 1960s on, Sigmar Polke (1941–2010) treated the relationship between reality and the reality contained within a picture, art and everyday life – pointedly, with humour, and sometimes critically. The controlled and uncontrollable ‘letting happen’ of physical phenomena played an important role in Polke’s work. The 40 gouaches of the exhibition document the dripping and flowing of paint. Polke laid a strict grid over the unpredictable flow of paint. This antithesis of chance and structure is characteristic of his work. Even the often absurd-sounding titles of pictures and exhibitions, such as ‘Music from an Unknown Source’, are typical.

Blaudzun (*1974) has developed over the last ten years into an established name in the Dutch and European music world. He has a unique, confrontational voice that can sound sounds oppressive, hopeful or combative. The composer is known for his diverse and experimental musical activities and collaborations.

Blaudzun's new album will be presented at the opening of the exhibition on 13 December 2019.


Götz Adriani, curator and exhibition organiser

Eric Wie, curator of Cobra Museum voor Moderne Kunst

Exhibitions worldwide

With over 20 touring exhibitions currently travelling across the globe and with its diverse event programmes on contemporary art, the ifa links the German art scene with internationally active cultural creators and forms cooperations and networks. The projects, many of which were developed in co-creation with local partners, cover the various disciplines of modern and contemporary fine arts – from current themes in architecture, photography and design to Bauhaus and monographic exhibitions such as Rosemarie Trockel or Wolfgang Tillmans. These projects generate local meeting platforms and allow international perspectives on topics of global relevance. The ifa also provides loan exhibits to interested museums.

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