May 24, 2006


I've been helping Joel with his show install, (along with a gang of people here in ChinaTown) for thte past couple of days at Parker Jones' Black Dragon Society.

Joel's show will open this Saturday.

Many more images of the install in progress below the fold.

Monday, we started work on the "SpeakEasy" in Black Dragon Society's (BDS)Basement. Left to right: Parker Jones sitting atop the stage, Phil Wagner, Adam Janes, Bart Exposito, Joel, and Andrew Hahn, who is having an opening the same Saturday at Sister Gallery across Hill Street in the old plaza.

Dave Deany designed the bar. Dave was away on Monday, forcing us to imagine what his intentions were. All day, we referred to the Deany brain, guessing Deany moves. Dave's big on working with reclaimed wood. Roughsawn tree trunks, hunks of crosote treated timbers, ancient pallettes grey and furry with raised grain. It's a sawsall revolution because he is able to slice off the nails without having to pull them all out. The bar was shaped in the spirit of Lil' Abner and Dogpatch (my interpretation, not Dave's).

The featured drink on pening night: gin and tonics.

Joel's show is an over and under affair with the topside composed of four walls (paintings, prints and ephemera) plus a table in the center of the space. The fourth wall is a thank you: the exterior window wall is a vinyl letter tribute to sixty five people Joel feels a measure of gratitude to. Bart is the pro at window vinyl. Monique van Genderen did the honors in producing the material.

It took Bart two days to stick up the names.

Space was tight, so we had to make the saw cuts in the alley. Local Chinese neighbors didn't like it too much, but the grumble was not too bad. Eventually, they nose into the gallery and usually smile as they shake thier heads and walk away.

I've got a lot of favorites in the show, but top of the list is this one. It's an enlargement of photobooth craziness shot at a dinner party one night when joel and Parker snuck off to shoot this shirtless provocation to amuse thier dates. Much later, they considered featuring it in an ArtForum ad, but common sense or timidity prevailed and now the image was reclaimed for posterity as this foto piece.

And where did they decide to hang it?

Of course. The fifth wall.

Jeff Cobb joined in . He's sitting against the wall there.

Approaching 11:30pm, we call it a night and repair to Hop Louie for a nightcap.

More to come, stay tuned.

Posted by Dennis at May 24, 2006 8:36 PM

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