Ladies and gentlemen, it’s 1980s throwback time, with our host George Shaw…
Following the tradition of many promising British art students in the 70s and 80s, Richard Butler stepped away from the easel and in front of a microphone as lead singer of The Psychedelic Furs. After years of making music, Butler returned to art in his quest to capture the melancholy “void we all have in ourselves.” At his third show naturalhistory at Freight & Volume, Butler’s main subject continues to be his daughter Maggie who frequently appears behind his favourite motifs of veils, masks, and confessional shrouds.
At the height of his infamy, Alan Vega was one half of the dangerous, 80s New York electro-punk duo Suicide. Even while he wreaked havoc all over downtown, Vega never stopped making visual art having studied under Ad Reinhardt at Brooklyn College, although he declined to exhibit until 2002. With his show Welcome to Wyoming at Invisible-Exports, Vega presents his signature light-based sculptures, as well as the semi-automatic portraits of old men he’s drawn nightly for as long as he can(?) remember, “always done while I’m blitzed.”
Cardona Bridge (Juarez)
Nature Morte (4)
Police Graduation (Juarez)
Brian McGuire has never been in a punk band, but his outrage at the moral hypocrisy, weak social justice, and daily violence in Juarez – the murder capital of the world – where thousands of people have been butchered by the drug cartels, has much of the establishment-defying ethos of 80s punk. His show at Fergus McCaffrey combines powerful, confronting paintings about the voiceless and forgotten which he creates as acts of solidarity, and the documentary Blood Rising which details his political activism against the ongoing murders of young women.