Past Exhibits

The Window Gallery presents the work of contemporary makers of unusual and newly invented musical instruments, including emerging artists as well as recognized pioneers. The emphasis is on originality in concept and design, recognizing the seminal role of the search for new sounds in the expansion of musical horizons. Equally essential to the exhibits are notions of beauty, craft, and humor.

The Window Gallery is curated by Bart Hopkin, David Samas, and Kirk Pearson. Located at 55 Taylor Street in San Francisco, the gallery is open to the public Monday through Friday, 9 am – 5 pm, and during performances.

Email the Gallery Manager for information, questions, comments or to propose an installation.

Support the Window Gallery’s one-of-a-kind exhibits by making a contribution to the cause:

CURRENT EXHIBIT: Bryan Day’s Vertical Measures

Mon, Jan 1 — Thu, Feb 29, 2024

‘Vertical Measures’ showcases a collection of invented instruments and sound art pieces that I developed after moving back to the East Bay in 2017. The pieces presented in this exhibition are constructed using upcycled common household objects, and many of them are midi-controllable through a simple keyboard interface. A recent focus in my work involves building self-resonating instruments that make use of controlled feedback loops. This shift in focus has significantly influenced my recorded work, placing less emphasis on percussive elements and more on extended textural passages. As with all my work, I aim to highlight their accidental imperfections rather than striving to fit neatly into an established framework.

Bryan Day is a sonic adventurer, painter, and inventor of curious things based in the East Bay. Using scavenged electronics, repurposed mechanical components, and amplified materials that you might find in your garage or your great uncle’s office, he re-imagines them into constructivist sound sculptures. Day has performed, taught workshops, and built sound installations across Europe, Asia, and the Americas. He spends his days designing, building and fixing exhibits at the Exploratorium in San Francisco.

UPCOMING: Cheryl E. Leonard’s “Wilding”

Fri, Mar 1 — Tue, Apr 30, 2024

This Window Gallery exhibit will have a reception on April 18th at 6pm. Reception with light refreshments starts at 6 followed by a talk/demo at 7 by Leonard. Admission is FREE with RSVP!


In “Wilding,” newly-conjured musical instruments of wood, bone, shell, seaweed, and stone are combined with an assortment of graphic scores I have developed over the last two decades. Rooted in first hand explorations of untamed and re-wilded places – from the remote polar regions to right outside my front door in San Francisco – these sculptural instruments and notation experiments are part of my ongoing attempts to untangle how I can best duet with environments and ecosystems, to merge music and wilderness.

Constructed out of materials gathered in California and Norway, the instruments evoke fantastical flora and fauna. From clear, pitched tones to gritty, textural noises, these creations produce a wealth of unique timbres, tones, and ambiances when played with various techniques and amplified via microphones. In order to articulate how to produce these unusual voices and enable musicians to perform my compositions, I have invented my own systems of graphic notation. “Wilding” showcases approaches to scoring that I have experimented with while I working with natural-object musical instruments since the early 2000s.

Included are: timelines packed with intricate graphic symbols, recipes for improvisations, abstract gesture diagrams, and asemic calligraphies.

Artist Bio

Cheryl E. Leonard is a San Francisco-based composer, performer, field recordist, and instrument builder whose works investigate natural sites and ecosystems, and human relationships to them. She uses microphones and amplification to explore sonic intricacies, highlighting unique voices and soundscapes while addressing environmental issues. Her projects often feature sculptural natural-object instruments and field recordings from remote locales. Leonard’s musical research has taken her to a wide range of wilderness areas, including Antarctica and the Arctic. Her works have been presented in concerts and art exhibitions in the Americas, Europe, Japan, and Australasia. Grants awarded include the Antarctic Artists and Writers Program, American Music Center, American Composers Forum, and ASCAP. Commissions include works for Kronos Quartet, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and Funsch Dance. Leonard has contributed to several publications about music and sound art. Her recordings are available on Other Minds, mappa, Gilgongo, Rural Situationism, and numerous other labels.

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