Negativland “Our Favorite Things” & Neon Park & Chick Strand: Retrospective
September 7 – 30, 2012
Opening Reception with Musical Performance: Friday, September 7th; 8–11 PM
Negativland “Our Favorite Things”
A provocation and a punk-inspired commentary on our mercenary culture…eloquent and impassioned spokesmen for ideas like a ‘creative commons’…it’s salutary to see these smart and influential guys get a gallery show.
– ART IN AMERICA
Since 1980 the creative collective known as Negativland have been collaboratively creating collage works in fine art, music, CDs, video, radio, and live performance using appropriated sounds, objects, images, and text. They have been sued twice for copyright infringement, fought back, and their work is now referenced and taught in many college courses in the US and has been written about in over 150 books (including “No Logo” by Naomi Klein). Since those two lawsuits, Negativland have been aggressively and publicly involved in advocating significant reforms of our nations copyright laws, with recent visits to Capitol Hill to speak to the staff of various Senators and Congressmen.
Our Favorite Things is Negativland’s first retrospective exhibit in Los Angeles, and is a comprehensive survey of both current and older visual art works that have also been exhibited in New York, Minneapolis, Seattle, London, Houston, and Art Basel. The members of Negativland live and work in California, Washington, North Carolina, and Massachusetts, so this opening reception with a live performance is a true rarity not to be missed!
Declared heroic by their peers for refashioning culture into what the group considers to be more honest statements, Negativland suggests that refusing to be original, in the traditional sense, is the only way to make art that has any depth within commodity capitalism…
– NEW YORK TIMES
Negativland isn’t just some group of merry pranksters; its art is about tearing apart and reassembling found images, objects, and sounds to create new ones, in an attempt to make social, political and artistic statements. Hilarious and chilling.
– THE ONION
Neon Park & Chick Strand: Retrospective
Neon Park, also known as Martin Muller in quieter circles, is perhaps best known for his strongly defined album cover art, particularly his work for Little Feat, Frank Zappa, David Bowie, Dr. John and The Beach Boys. But he gave the world so much more. Now, you have a chance to see it. The exhibit, titled Neon Park & Chick Strand: Retrospective, will present seminal works spanning his entire exhibition era.
Neon and Chick first met during the early ’60 Berkeley scene, and were collaborators in art and in life for more than 30 years, dividing their time between Los Angeles and a small town in Mexico, an influence that would be seen in Neon’s later works, and which directly inspired several of Chick’s documentaries. She was a filmmaker.
Neon broke onto the art scene with his famous cover for Frank Zappa’s 1970 album Weasels Ripped My Flesh. His cover for Little Feat’s second LP, Sailin’ Shoes is only slightly less provocative. Neon’s art was habitually the perfect visual counterpoint to the surrealistic imagery, funky sound and laid-back attitudes of the bands he worked with.
The world lost Neon to Lou Gehrig’s Disease in 1993; Chick died in 2009. In addition to his album cover art, his work has also appeared in Playboy, National Lampoon, Glass Eye and Dreamworks. Park’s images resist easy categorization. He referred to his style as “Zen Voodoo.” Take the time to catch this wonderful exhibit. You’ll be spellbound from the moment you step in front of this magnificent collection and you’ll see quickly why so many loved his work, not to mention his company.