Monday, December 18th
Photographs selected by Elizabeth Murray Finkelstein
November 4 – December 18, 2015
Hours by appointment or stop by Bantha Tea house next store to see this amazing exhibition!
Nat Finkelstein (1933-2009) was a photographer specialized in emerging subcultures. As an established young photojournalist in the 1960s, Finkelstein became a vital collaborator among Andy Warhol’s Factory, serving as the in-house media. His intimate and intense photographs of the legendary Silver Factory scene (including Warhol, the Velvet Underground & Nico, Edie Sedgwick, and visitors including Bob Dylan and Marcel Duchamp) are now among the most recognized images of the era.
While best known for his photographs of The Factory, Finkelstein documented stories as wide-ranging as civil rights protests for LIFE Magazine, to post-punk New York City, to the international rave scene of the 1990s, and beyond. Throughout his life and work, Nat Finkelstein remained steadfast in his vision: emerging art and music, the expansion of consciousness, and freedom of expression.
For the exhibition UP ALL NIGHT, Elizabeth Murray Finkelstein presents a selection from her late husband’s print archive illustrating these themes through images of celebration.
Representing the Factory-era, Elizabeth includes Nat’s photographs of the Velvet Underground – described by critic Ian Johnston as “…[Among] the best ever portraits of a rock band, exuding sleaze, menace, and decadent glamour.” Yet, it is poignant to consider Nat Finkelstein’s own words: “These unposed images were made when Andy Warhol et al were people, not products; young artists, not celebratees.”
Another series of photographs from the Factory scene depict dancing models, young women whose names are lost to history.
Years later, Nat Finkelstein would document another New York City scene, another generation of young artists whose history became legend. Irma Freeman Center will present Nat’s never-before-screened videos of Disco 2000 – the early 1990s dance party known as center of club kid culture. The club kid / rave moment of the early 1990s is further depicted in photographs from Nat Finkelstein’s body of work, Merry Monsters. Author and photography critic Miss Rosen described this work, “With a cast of characters to rival the Wizard of Oz, the club kid scene was one of the most magical, mystical, global phenomena at the end of the millennia. Fueled in equal parts by drugs, creativity, and anti-authoritarian vibes, the creatures shown in the Merry Monsters series rule the night.”
Despite the undeniable presence of bold-faced names, this is an exhibition not about celebrity. Rather, it is about celebration. This exhibition celebrates young artists in their element: light and sound and raw creation. A surrender and homage to a moment out of time – when the lights go down and the music comes up – and the photographer who was there to witness.