Yoko Ono with Glass Hammer 1967 from HALF-A-WIND SHOW, Lisson Gallery, London, 1967. Photograph © Clay Perry / Artwork © Yoko Ono

Yoko Ono: Music of the Mind
Tate Modern
Bankside London SE1, 9TG
February 15 – September 1, 2024

YOKO ONO: MUSIC OF THE MIND celebrates the work of artist and activist Yoko Ono (born 1933). The exhibition explores Ono’s conceptual practice, foregrounding ideas over objects, alongside her ongoing campaign for world peace. It takes its title from the artist’s desire to stimulate the imagination. Ono notes, ‘The only sound that exists to me is the sound of the mind. My works are only to induce music of the mind in people … In the mind-world, things spread out and go beyond time.’

The exhibition traces Ono’s radical approach to art, language and participation, from her early ‘instruction’ pieces to her recent, large-scale installations. It covers seven decades of Ono’s expansive practice, from 1955 to today. During this time, Ono moved between Japan, the US and the UK, before settling in New York in 1971. Following a loose chronology, the exhibition highlights recurring ideas and themes in Ono’s work, making connections across time and place. Ono’s art takes many forms. It includes scores, performances, objects, film, music, sound and events. In 1964, Ono published Grapefruit, her foundational book of instruction works. These concise texts, somewhere between poem and score, aim to unlock the mind. Instructions are presented throughout the exhibition, calling you to participate, often with others.

Yoko Ono, FLY 1970-71. Courtesy the artist

Ono invites you to realise her artworks – to construct paintings in your mind, perform inside a bag, play a game of chess and share your memories and wishes. But, most importantly, Ono invites you to imagine. This collective call to action is a provocation to change the world, one wish at a time.

A dream you dream alone is only a dream.

A dream you dream together is reality.

Yoko Ono

As part of YOKO ONO: MUSIC OF THE MIND, works by Ono are presented across Tate Modern. You are invited to share your wishes for peace on Wish Trees for London directly outside the exhibition. Find Ono’s instruction Painting to Be Constructed In Your Head (‘Observe three paintings carefully. Mix them well in your head.’) in the free collection displays. PEACE is POWER is presented on the windows of the Restaurant on Level 6 of the Natalie Bell Building.

Yoko Ono SKY TV 1966, exhibition realisation 2024 Courtesy the artist © Yoko Ono

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