Sound Lab

On permanent view

Sound Lab: Interactive multimedia installations. Electric guitars, drums, samplers, mixing consoles are ready for jamming – all that’s missing is you.

Nirvana: Taking Punk to the Masses. Who would’ve thought they’d be a museum item so soon!

Wild Blue Angel: Hendrix Abroad, 1966-1970. A travelling legend, at home in Seattle.

Museum of Pop Culture

June 13th, 2018

Excelsior! Marvel Universe @ MoPOP || SEAttle

Scarlet Witch #1
David Aja, 2016

Daredevil #188, cover
Frank Miller (pencils), Klaus Janson (inks), 1982

Giant-size X-Men #1, cover
Gil Kane and Dave Cockrum (pencils) and Dave Cockrum (inks), 1975
This rare piece of original art shows the first appearance of the ”new” X-Men literally bursting through an image of the old team.

New X-Men, in-house advertising art
By Dave Cockrum, 1978

The Uncanny X-Men #136, cover
John Byrne (pencils) and Terry Austin (inks), 1980

Wolverine #1, cover
Frank Miller (pencils), Joe Rubinstein (inks), 1982

New Mutants, poster
Art by Bill Sienkiewicz, 1984
Mixed media

Matt Murdock’s cane & glasses as used by Charlie Cox in ”Daredevil” and ”The Defenders” (2015-2017)

Daredevil #69, cover
Art by Alex Maleev, 1998

Daredevil #181, cover
Frank Miller (pencils), Klaus Janson (inks), 1982

Tony Isabella and Arvell Jones created Mercedes Kelly Knight in 1975 for the ”Iron Fist” series. A former NYPD cop, Misty had a mechanical arm (courtesy of Tony Stark), a striking Afro hairstyle (courtesy of Angela Davis) and a tough, sexy attitude (courtesy of the popular so-called Blacksploitation movies that also inspired Luke Cage). As a super-powered woman of colour, Misty was instantly ground-breaking; what’s more, in 1977, Misty and Iron Fist shared what may have been the first interracial kiss in a Super hero comic.

I am Groot, I am Groot, I am Groot, I am Groot (trnsl: Groot as seen in ”Guardians of the Galaxy” (2014)

Museum of Pop Culture

June 13th, 2018

Marvel Universe @ MoPOP || SEAttle

Marvel Comics #1
Cover art by Frank R. Paul, 1939

Captain America Comics #1
Jack Kirby and Joe Simon gave publisher Martin Goodman one of the biggest comic book hits of the 1940s when they invented Captain America. Although America had not yet entered World War Two, Simon, Kirby and Goodman already saw Hitler as a grave threat to the principles of democracy and equality. This bold cover powerfully expressed their feelings.

Flo Steinberg
Stan Lee and Jack Kirby worked with many talented collaborators at Marvel – and if you visited the company in the 1960s, ”Fabulous” Flo Steinberg was probably the first person you’d meet. As Stan’s assistant she handled his appointments, helped keep artists and writers on deadline, responded to fan letters, mailed out ”Merry Marvel Marching Society” kits and even dealt with the Comics Code Authority. When she passed away in 2017 she was celebrated as ”the heart of Marvel (in the 1960s) and a legend in her own right.”

Tales of Suspense #98, cover
Jack Kirby (pencils), Frank Giacoia (inks), 1968

Amazing Fantasy #15
Jack Kirby (pencils), Steve Ditko (inks), 1962

The Amazing Spider-Man #121
Gil Kane (pencils), John Romita Sr. (inks), 1973

Scarlet Witch #1
David Aja, 2016

The Avengers #57, cover
John Buscema (pencils), George Klein (inks), 1968
This legendary cover depicts the first appearance of The Vision

Captain Marvel #28, cover
Jim Starlin (pencils), Pablo Marcos (inks), 1973

Marvel Preview #11, splash page
John Byrne (pencils), Terry Austin (inks), 1977
Watercolour and gouache on paper

Star-Lord has changed a great deal from his original conception here. This page comes from the first story to pair artists John Byrne and Terry Austin; the two would soon be widely admired for their work on the X-Men

Spider-Man, 1978 Calendar Illustration
John Byrne (pencils), Joe Sinnott (inks)

Celebrating 80 years of Marvel Superheroes, the exhibition ran through February 2019. With comics, costumes, props and films, it was Marvel-ously entertaining. I have so much I’d like to show you, that Superheroes will dominate the Humble Fabulist Universe in the coming days. You have been warned!

Seattle, WA

June 13th, 2018

Peter Hujar: Speed of Life

The life and art of Peter Hujar (1934–1987) were rooted in downtown New York. Private by nature, combative in manner, well-read, and widely connected, Hujar inhabited a world of avant-garde dance, music, art, and drag performance. His mature career paralleled the public unfolding of gay life between the Stonewall uprising in 1969 and the AIDS crisis of the 1980s.

In his loft studio in the East Village, Hujar focused on those who followed their creative instincts and shunned mainstream success. He made, in his words, “uncomplicated, direct photographs of complicated and difficult subjects,” immortalizing moments, individuals, and subcultures passing at the speed of life.

Peter Hujar: Speed of Life was on view at the Morgan Library through May 20, 2018.

Cat on Cash Register, 1957
Chloe Finch, 1981
Reclining Nude on Couch, 1978
Daisy Aldan, June 18, 1955
Nude Self-Portrait, Running, 1966-67

For a 1966-67 workshop led by Richard Avedon and art director Marvin Israel, Hujar turned in an uncharacteristic series of nude, running self-portraits made with a flash unit in the studio of his employer. In a conscious echo of Avedon’s manner, the images emphasize action, vivid gesture and empty space- sensational effects calculated to hold a magazine page. Over the next couple of years, during Hujar’s brief pursuit of a career in fashion, the two photographers had frequent late-night phonecalls. Avedon wrote to him in 1979, ”if you ever have new work that you’re interested in selling, please call me as I am your collector.”

New York: Sixth Avenue (1), 1976
Candy Darling on Her Deathbed, 1973

In September 1973, transgender Warhol Superstar Candy Darling (born James Lawrence Slattery) was hospitalized for lymphoma. She asked Hujar to make a portrait of her ”as a farewell to my fans.” Out of several dozen exposures, Hujar chose to print this languorous pose. As rendered in the print, Candy’s banal, fluorescent-lit hospital room looks as elegant as the studio props in a Hollywood starlet’s portrait. Hujar later wrote that his style cues came from Candy, who was ”playing every death scene from every movie.”

The image, first seen in print in the New York Post after Candy’s death six months later, became the most widely reproduced of Hujar’s works during his lifetime.

Fran Lebowitz at Home in Morristown, New Jersey, 1974
Dana Reitz’s legs, Walking, 1979 & Sheryl Sutton, 1977
John McClellan, 1981
Stephen Varble (3), 1976
Edwin Denby (1), 1975
Rose and Edward Murphy (2), 1977

Hujar photographed his mother and her second husband, Ed ”Snookie” Murphy, on a rare occasion when they visited his loft. Obliged at age eleven to move into their one-bedroom apartment on E 32nd St., Hujar had moved out at sixteen. In adulthood, he maintained a protective distance, consistently referring to Rose Murphy by her full, unrelated-sounding name. Rose Murphy never reconciled herself to her son’s homosexuality, nor did he forgive her rejection.

When invited to a friend’s for dinner, Hujar often gave his host a recent photograph printed at a modest scale. No other print of this image is known.

The Morgan Library & Museum

May 20th, 2018

The Muppets (& Other Puppets)


From The Jim Henson Exhibition which features all our favourite puppets from The Muppet Show and Sesame Street, and a whole range of character sketches, storyboards, scripts, photographs, and costumes from Jim Henson’s universe. It is now travelling, currently stopped at the Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque, NM, until April 19, 2020. Check here for future venues.

”The Jim Henson Exhibition features a broad range of objects from throughout his remarkable career. It reveals how Henson and his team of builders, performers, and writers brought to life the enduringly popular worlds of The Muppet Show, the Muppet movies, Sesame Street, Fraggle Rock, The Dark Crystal, and Labyrinth. It also includes material from Henson’s experimental film projects and his early work, presenting him as a restlessly creative performer, filmmaker, and technical innovator.”

Museum of the Moving Image, Astoria, New York

May 13th, 2018

Museum of the City of New York

Kubrick or no Kubrick, learning about New York City’s past, present and future in a dedicated Museum, is fun. As is capturing Starlight, the brilliant light fixture by Cooper Joseph Studio which dominates its entrance and lights up the circular staircase.


Poster detail from the Suffrage parade through Madison Square, 1915. The ladies were dressed in white, emblem of purity, which was a way for more moderate suffragists to show their support for the vote.

Detail from ”Ruckus Manhattan: Wall Street-Newsstand and Lamppost, 1976
Papier-mâché, wood, plastic, fiberglass and vinyl by Red Grooms, Mimi Gross and Ruckus Construction Company

”The Truth Is… I See You”, speech bubbles by Hank Willis Thomas (b. 1976)
MetroTech Commons, 2015

A boot, worn by ”Mrs. Potts” in Beauty and the Beast, 1993-94

Museum of the City of New York, East Harlem, Manhattan

May 9th, 2018

Through a Different Lens: Stanley Kubrick Photographs

Stanley Kubrick was just 17 when he sold his first photograph to the pictorial magazine Look in 1945. In his photographs, many unpublished, Manhattan-born and Bronx-raised Kubrick trained the camera on his native city, drawing inspiration from the nightclubs, street scenes, and sporting events that made up his first assignments, and capturing the pathos of ordinary life with a sophistication that belied his young age.

Through a Different Lens: Stanley Kubrick Photographs features more than 120 photographs by Kubrick from the Look Magazine archive of the Museum of the City of New York, an unparalleled collection that includes 129 photography assignments and more than 12,000 negatives from his five years as a staff photographer.

The exhibition was on show in the Museum of the City of New York through October 2018, a tribute to the great cinematographer-to-be, capturing life in his City. It is now traveling and on show in Skirball Cultural Center, Los Angeles through March 8, 2020.

Park Benches: Love is Everywhere
Unpublished, filed: May 1, 1946

This series of photographs captured New Yorkers, many unaware of Kubrick’s camera, in romantic situations on park benches, fire escapes and other locations. Several images were probably taken with infrared film and flash, which allowed Kubrick to photograph in the dark. Kubrick likely learned of this technology, rare among magazine photographers at the time, from the celebrated tabloid photographer Weegee, who used the technique in the early 1940s to photograph seemingly unaware patrons at movie theatres.

Dentist’s Office: Americans Are Dutiful but Nervous Dental Patients
Published: October 1, 1946

While Mama Shops: Kids are Bored, Get into Mischief While Mom’s Away
Published: March 18, 1947

Advertising Sign Painters at Work
Unpublished, Filed: September 3, 1947

Kubrick shared this unpublished assignment with two other photographers, Frank Bauman and Tom Weber. The photographers documented a publicity stunt performed by sign painters and a live female model as they created a billboard for a Peter Pan bra advertisement high above the corner of Fifth Avenue and 42nd Street.

Shoeshine Boy
Unpublished, Filed: October 6th, 1947

One of the earliest narrative assignments Kubrick created for Look was a series of photographs of Mickey, an adolescent shoeshine boy. Kubrick shot more than 250 photographs that closely followed Mickey through the course of his day.

Columbia University
Author: Don Wharton, Published: May 11, 1948

Wash Day: Look visits a Greenwich Village Self-Service Laundry
Published: April 27, 1948

Midsummer Nights in New York
Author: Patricia Coffin, Published: July 19, 1949

Rosemary Williams: Showgirl
Unpublished. Filed: March 1949

One of Kubrick’s largest unpublished profiles, approximately 700 images of aspiring model and actress Rosemary Williams, was likely created for a proposed day-in-the-life piece contrasting her onstage persona and her backstage real life.

A Dog’s Life in the Big City
Author: Isabella Taves
Published: November 8, 1949

Exploring the lives of New York’s 291,018 licensed dogs, this story extolled an ”only in New York” quirkiness that Look often promoted in its coverage of the city.

What Teenagers Should Know About Love
Author: Evelyn Millis Duvall
Published: October 10, 1950

Museum of the City of New York, East Harlem, Manhattan

May 9th, 2018

David Bowie Is…

Farewell to April and farewell to David, who is now and forever somewhere else. First time I listened to his music again, since he became immortal in 2016. It was well curated, the exhibition in the Brooklyn Museum, a bit smaller than the original in the V&A but, after David’s passing, all the more emotional.

Back to Manhattan, into the alien world of NYC Subway. Ensamble Ferroeléctrico de Marte, anonymous musicians with iron masks that look like animals. Music for the urban jungle.

April 29th, 2018

PS: My take of the original exhibition in V&A London in 2013, is here{x}

Young Contemporaries 2018 @ The Halsey

A long-standing tradition at the College of Charleston, Young Contemporaries is an annual exhibition presented by the Halsey Institute, featuring work by College students selected by a nationally prominent juror.

In 2018, the 33rd Annual Juried Student Exhibition was curated by Amy Yoes.

Hope Morgan
Smokers, 2017-18
Charcoal on paper

Austin Darby
Moon, 2017
Graphite and charcoal on paper

Austin Darby
Edge City, 2017
Graphite and charcoal on paper

3 untitled works (2017) by Bow Smith
Liquid silver emulsion print

Lilli Cameron
Le Petit Déjeuner, 2017
Graphite on paper

on top of

”Many faces”, 2018 by Hailee Selby
Paper and wire

Danielle Dungo
Rose Series, 2017-18
Oil on panel

Chloe Hogan
Sunday Afternoon, 2018
Oil on canvas

Timothy Hunter
(I Can’t) Stop Daydreaming, 2018
Oil on canvas

Danielle Dungo
Self Portrait, 2018
Oil on canvas

And the winner was…

Anna Newell
Closish, 2018
Graphite and charcoal on paper

YC18 Best in Drawing

A small, personal selection from the Young Contemporaries 2018 @ The Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art

Charleston, SC

April 11th, 2018