- ALREADY HAPPENED:
R.U.O.K. Or Wat?
December 8, 2016 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
December 8, 2016 / 6 PM / Free
Publication Party Rivington School: 80s New York Underground
In honor of the exhibition Toyo Tsuchiya Invisible Underground and the publication of Rivington School: 80s New York Underground, Howl! Happening is pleased to present a series of events that look deeply into the art and practice of the Rivington School. Join editor Istvan Kantor for an evening celebrating the new tome, including a ritual book burning of first copy by Monty Cantsin accompanied by Angel Eyedealism, as well as Rivington School contributors, and Black Dog publisher Duncan McCorquodale from London.
Rivington School: 80s New York Underground documents the work of the Rivington School group of artists that emerged during the turbulent 80s in the heart of the Lower East Side. The RS set an internationally important precedent for contemporary alternative practice. The book explores the underground scene that formed around this group of artists, named after an abandoned public school building on Rivington Street. Here, like-minded street artists, sculptors and performers set about to create works that refuted and challenged an increasingly commercialized art world.
Situated across the road from the school, the No Se No social club—also run by Rivington School founder “Cowboy” Ray Kelly—acted as a meeting and performance space for many of the artists involved, such as Kembra Pfahler, Dragan Ilic, Arleen Schloss, Taylor Mead, Michael Carter, Jack Waters, and Phoebe Legere, and was where the renowned 99 Nights of performance took place in 1983, documented every night by the photographer Toyo Tsuchiya for exhibition the following day. The School was also the origin of the guerrilla sculpture space the Rivington Sculpture Garden, which opened in 1985 and was destroyed more than once by city authorities. Its construction/destruction is documented in the Super 8 film Anti-Credo by Monty Cantsin aka Istvan Kantor. Formed in a vacant lot next to the No Se No club, the evolving collective space was the site of the massive, welded metal junk sculpture that the group has become known for.
The Rivington School gave rise to a number of highly regarded artists, including E.F.Higgins III, Ray Kelly, David Mora Catlett, Shalom Neuman, Toyo Tsuchiya, Istvan Kantor, Linus Coraggio, Paolo Buggiani, Tovey Halek, Jack Vengrow, Ken Hiratsuka, Gloria McLean, FA-Q (Kevin Wendall), Julius Klein, Geoff “Gizmo” Gilmore, JIM C, Angela Idealism and Peter Missing.