Charles Peterson: Taking Punk to the Masses exhibition at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery opening Saturday, May 14 with special guest Peter Bagge.
April 28, 2011 - Seattle, WA. As the Northwest's grunge generation examines the implications of their misspent youth, Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is pleased to present "Charles Peterson: Taking Punk to the Masses." Inspired by the recent Fantagraphics book, Taking Punk to the Masses: From Nowhere to Nevermind, published in association with the acclaimed Nirvana exhibition at EMP, Peterson's photography show will focus on the seminal musicians and social milieu that evolved into a global youth movement. The show opens on Saturday, May 14 from 6:00 to 9:00 PM with a reception for the artist and a guest appearance by extraordinary Seattle cartoonist Peter Bagge, who chronicled the grunge counterculture in his comic book series Hate.
Charles Peterson's cinematic approach to photography captured the unrestrained enthusiasm of Seattle's punk environment throughout the 1980s and 90s. His exhibition will include influential early bands like the U-Men and 10 Minute Warning (with future Guns N' Roses member Duff McKagan), as well as audiences at local venues. Peterson's work is central to both EMP's Nirvana exhibit and the companion book, which documents the grunge scene from its inception with images, artifacts and oral histories provided by many of the participants (including Fantagraphics Bookstore's resident curator). His photography is the subject of several books and has been celebrated in galleries and museums worldwide. The exhibition at Fantagraphics Bookstore will give audiences an opportunity to see this remarkable artist in his formative period.
Peterson will be joined by legendary cartoonist Peter Bagge signing copies of the recently released Hate Annual #9 comic and Yeah! collection. Bagge's influential comic book serial Hate went beyond satire to help establish the attitude and aesthetics of the grunge era. In the latest issue, Hate protagonist Buddy Bradley returns to Seattle from his home in New Jersey so his wife Lisa can look after her ailing parents, once again mimicking the experiences of his readership. Making its debut is the Yeah! collection. Originally serialized on DC's imprint Homage, Yeah! tells the tale of an intergalactic all-girl pop group trying to make it big. Collaborating with artist Gilbert Hernandez of Love and Rockets fame, Bagge again hits his mark. According to Jane Wiedlin of the Go-Go's, "Reading Yeah! is a bit like reading my life story, as told in an alternative universe."
Adding to the atmosphere, Fantagraphics Bookstore's retail partners, Georgetown Records, will mount a related installation of vintage Seattle punk posters, records, and ephemera, alluding to a boutique record store of the grunge era. Russ Battaglia of Fallout Records & Skateboards fame will spin period platters. (Fallout was the site of an early Charles Peterson show, and a frequent hangout for artists and musicians.)
The evening will conclude with a concert at neighboring Mix nightclub with Bagge's pop combo Can You Imagine? featuring musician/producer Steve Fisk. The group highlights harmonies by Michelle Plaitis, Sue Merrill, and Rachel Frost, reflecting the imagined music of Yeah! They'll be joined by the return of the Capillaries, fronted by gifted cartoonist and musician Matthew Southworth (who will also be on hand at the bookstore to sign newly minted copies of the collected Stumptown from Portland publisher Oni). Also on the bill is Wormburner from Hoboken, New Jersey — Bagge's home prior to his move to Seattle. (New Jersey is also home to Buddy Bradley and Yeah!)
The festivities on May 14 coincide with the colorful Georgetown Art Attack featuring visual and performing arts presentations throughout the historic industrial arts corridor. Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is located at 1201 S. Vale Street (at Airport Way S.) Open daily 11:30 - 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.
CHARLES PETERSON: TAKING PUNK TO THE MASSES
Opening reception Saturday, May 14, 6:00 - 9:00 PM
Special guest Peter Bagge premiering HATE ANNUAL 9 and YEAH collection
Concert by Can You Imagine?, Capillaries, and Wormburner follows at Buddy & Jay's Scrap Metal Emporium (AKA Mix), 6006 12th Ave. S.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery 1201 S. Vale Street (at Airport Way S.) Seattle, WA 98108 206.658.0110 Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM www.fantagraphics.com
Yow indeed! Who better embodies "lust for life" than Zippy the Pinhead? Image (and post title) provided by our warehouse manager Nico Vassilakis. This photo is worth a million in prizes! Are we having Fun House yet? Etcetera!
The Georgetown Art Attack has become one of the region's most provocative cultural outings, as adventurous residents explore the delightfully rustic industrial arts corridor and discover aesthetic treasures at every turn.
Among the many highlights of the May 14 Art Attack installment: Taking Punk to the Masses, seminal Seattle grunge photography by Charles Peterson, joined by cartoonist Peter Bagge signing copies of his new Yeah!collection and Hate Annual #9 at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery; a companion installation of vintage Seattle punk posters, records and ephemera at Georgetown Records followed by a concert with Bagge's combo Can You Imagine? featuring Steve Fisk, with the Capillaries and Wormburner from Hoboken, N J at the Mix; new work by Mark Takamichi Miller and students at the Miller School of Art; the Nautilus is celebrating its one year anniversary with a show of Kyle Abernathy's oil paintings, live music and a magician; a solo show of photomontages by Amie Stewart at Calamity Jane's; live music by Cold Cold Ground and guests at the Georgetown Trailer Park Mall together with a show of industrial jewelry by Sonja Albin at Lula B Lightning and "I Don't Know Shit" by mixed media artist Julie Trout at Frida Trailer Gallery; "Inky Spokes: Bicycle Inspired Art" by Aaron Asis, Deborah Scott, Greg Boudreau, Jethaniel Peterka, Nikki Mazzei, Soren O'Malley and Yvette Endrijautzki at All City Coffee; Krab Jab Studio celebrates a move to Studio 246 in the Origial Ranier Brewery complex, welcomes new member Sandra Everingham, and mounts a show by East Coast illustrator Jeff Menges with Mark Tedin, Julie Baroh, and Michael Hoppe; an opening reception for "One Act," new paintings by Michael McDevitt at Georgetown Arts & Culture Center; mixed media photographer Misha Hunting and experimental images by John Gerhard at Vecta Photo Studio & Gallery; Foto Bolivia, a group photography exhibition of daily life in the South American country at La Catrina; "This a Way and That," new works and limited edition prints by Mark LaFalce at Two Tartes Café; and, as always, much more.
Don't miss the colorful and boisterous Honk Fest West festival of unconventional marching band throughout Georgetown on the evening of Friday, May 13. So plan to spend your weekend in Seattle's outrageously unorthodox arts community. The Georgetown Art Attack is a monthly promotion of the Georgetown Merchants Association (www.georgetownmerchants.org). For a printable Art Attack map visit: www.georgetownartattack.com.
These limited-edition tees were printed by our friends at Poketo. If you're lucky, you can still find one at participating stores, but with a lovely illustration like that, don't be surprised if they're all sold out!
Seattle's Experience Music Project is hosting festivities all weekend to launch their ambitious Nirvana exhibition and companion book Taking Punk to the Masses, published by Fantagraphics in association with EMP. The celebration begins with a private reception, followed by a members preview, this Friday evening with celebrity DJs including Fantagraphics friends Steve Fisk, Mark Pickerel, and Charles Peterson. Activities continue all weekend, including a panel on the origins of grunge at 2:30 on Saturday, with panelists including Peterson and former Fantagraphics frontman Tom Price, moderated by curator and the book's author Jacob McMurray.
The EMP exhibition focuses on Nirvana, while the book takes a broader view of Seattle's grunge counterculture, primarily through artifacts and oral histories provided by many of the principals of the movement. It reads like a chronicle of my misspent youth. (I'm quoted on Page 1 along with Kurt Cobain of Nirvana, Wayne Kramer of the MC5, and Mike McCready of Pearl Jam.) Every page reveals another fascinating step in an evolving punk subculture that would eventually alter the course of popular music worldwide. Who would've guessed at the time? Not me.
It's appropriate that Fantagraphics published this document. Comix played an important role in shaping the attitude and aesthetics of Seattle's grunge movement. I often compare Seattle in the late 80s and early 90s to San Francisco in the mid-60s. Like the hippie movement in the Bay Area, the Northwest had distinctive rock music, poster graphics, and fashion (or anti-fashion) sensibilities. We also had an army of talented and perceptive alternative cartoonists to disseminate the emerging scene, none more influential than Peter Bagge. The book establishes that many Fantagraphics artists, friends and future employees were central to the development of Seattle's domination of the counterculture of the era.
I commissioned this poster by Weirdo and Real Stuff contributor Ashleigh Talbot (formerly Ashleigh Raffloer, AKA Triangle-Slash) for a 1988 show I promoted with the U-Men, a legendary proto-grunge outfit. This bill included famed illustrator Ed Fotheringham's Thrown Ups featuring Mark Arm on drums. Mark and Ed are pictured prominently in Peterson's cover photo for the book. Both Mark and Tom Price of the U-Men would later work for Fantagraphics. Tom is playing guitar with the U-Men on the announcement for Peterson's May 14 show at Fantagraphics Bookstore below.
The Nirvana exhibition at EMP continues through 2014. To supplement the EMP show, Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery will mount an exhibition of seminal work by accomplished Seattle photographer Charles Peterson opening May 14. He will be joined by Peter Bagge signing copies of Hate Annual #9 (featuring Buddy's return to Seattle) and the Yeah! collection. The show will be followed by a concert by Bagge's band Can You Imagine? featuring Steve Fisk on keyboards. You should just move to Seattle. OK?
Get ready to rock! This Saturday, April 16 marks the annual Record Store Day promotion. Our neighbors at Georgetown Records are celebrating with free vinyl, CD samplers and swag from labels like Sub Pop, Epitaph, Decca, and WEA, among many others. To sweeten the deal, Fantagraphics Bookstore & Galleryis adding a free comic book for every customer of Georgetown Records. Get out and support your local independent record store this Saturday and throughout the year.
While perusing the finery at the Georgetown Trailer Park Mall and imbibing in locally-brewed beer during this Saturday's Georgetown Art Attack, be sure to drop by Georgetown Records and Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery. In addition to finding the world's greatest comix, the neighboring record store hosts a live ambient performance by Seattle experimental musician Rob Angus. I fondly recall Angus and his collaborator Jeff Grienke holding their own while opening for the Skeleton Crew — featuring legendary avant garde guitarist Fred Frith and cellist Tom Cora — in 1984 at my Graven Image gallery. In our current environment of forgettable and regrettable pop music, it's refreshing to find a provocative composer continuing to buck the trends.
Badass books, vintage vinyl, and live music! Don't miss it. See you this weekend.
Taking Punk to the Masses: From Nowhere to Nevermind visually documents the explosion of Grunge, the Seattle Sound, within the context of the underground punk subculture that was developing throughout the U.S. in the late 1970s and 1980s. This musical journey is represented entirely through the collection of Experience Music Project, Seattle’s museum of music and popular culture, pulling from a permanent archive of over 800 filmed oral history interviews and 140,000 artifacts – instruments, costumes, posters, records and other ephemera – dedicated to the pursuit of rock ’n’ roll.
Featuring over 100 key artifacts from EMP’s collection, Taking Punk to the Masses illustrates the evolution of punk rock from underground subculture to mainstream embrace. These artifacts are put into context by the stories of those that lived it: Mudhoney’s Mark Arm, Devo’s Mark Mothersbaugh, Hüsker Dü’s Grant Hart, Beat Happening’s Calvin Johnson, X’s Exene Cervenka, Sub Pop founders Bruce Pavitt and Jonathan Poneman, Black Flag’s Henry Rollins, Screaming Trees’ Mark Lanegan, Blondie’s Chris Stein, Nirvana’s Krist Novoselic, Dinosaur Jr’s J Mascis, Soundgarden’s Kim Thayil, and nearly 100 others.
Tracing a lineage from “Louie Louie” to the rise of Grunge with Nirvana, Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains and Mudhoney, Taking Punk to the Masses is the first visual history of one of America’s most vibrant music scenes, as told by its participants and seen through the surviving artifacts.
About the DVD:
Over the past 15 years, Experience Music Project has amassed over 800 filmed oral history interviews with musicians, producers, club owners, fans, and others associated with every genre of music. These interviews, along with the museum’s massive artifact collection, form the basis for every exhibition. The exhibition Nirvana: Taking Punk to the Masses includes footage from over 100 interviews. A selection of those interviews are included in a DVD, exclusive to the Taking Punk to the Masses book.
Renowned Canadian singer-songwriter Bruce Cockburn uses his guest editorship at Magnet magazine to espouse Franco-Belgian comics and Jacques Tardi in particular: "One of my favorites was Tardi’s series about a female private detective in fin-de-siecle Paris named Adèle Blanc-Sec. Fantagraphics has now released some of the Adèle stories in a form worthy of the original editions. They’ve put out other Tardi titles as well. This is exciting, even if I have them at home in French. It’s fun to think of a whole new audience discovering the work of such a great graphic novelist!"
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