Saturday, June 23, 2012

The Man Who Shot Rock & Roll

Iris Berry with John Scarpati
Last night's Cramp, Slash & Burn opening reception (from the book of the same title by photographer John Scarpati) brought back the era when punk and glam were twins. And many of John's subjects were on hand to celebrate with him.

The timing couldn't have been more perfect. Last Friday was the theatrical release of the hit musical Rock of Ages, which features the songs of the bands and era documented in Scarpati's book.  And the Annenberg Space for Photography show Who Shot Rock & Roll? opens tonight. Ed Colver, whose photos are featured in the Annenberg exhibition was on hand to give kudos to Scarpati and collect more than a few accolades, himself. One of my favorite moments of the night was series of reminiscences between Ed, John, Hugh Brown and myself about four different eras in the music business.

Legendary punk lensman Ed Colver
For those of you who missed the opening, there's some good news: not only is the show open to the public until Sunday, July 1st, but we're doing it again on Monday. Holding another opening, that is!

From 5-7 PM on Monday, June 25th, Scarpati will be here to dish some behind-the-scenes stories about the shoots captured in this exhibition. Then we're all heading up the hill to the Barnsdall Theater (within the Barnsdall Art Park complex –home of the Frank Lloyd Wright Hollyhock house) for the unveiling of John's iconic Fishbone photo which was just added to the Smithsonian Institute's permanent collection of important contemporary images.

Team Scarpati: Matt Kennedy, Lee Joseph,
Cindy Schwarzstein, Wendy Sherman & John Scarpati
This exhibition would not have happened if not for the efforts of Wendy Sherman and Cindy Schwarzstein who helped to guide everything into place, and of course praise must be given to Lee Joseph who made sure the right folks were aware of the importance of this event. He's put together a great collection of images from the evening's festivities on his Flickr page (which is where these images all came from).

Speaking of Rock & Roll, next Thursday is a Fishfry for the ages when Romeo Void vocalist Debora Iyal headlines an evening that includes The Groovy Rednecks and the Skip Heller Trio.

You really need to make into La Luz de Jesus Gallery more often...