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Flagpole. (Athens, Ga.) 1987-current, July 12, 2000, Image 6

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ART REVIEW bv JENNIFER SCHULTZ ROCK ART: ATHENS MUSICIANS GO VISUAL “Red & Orange House" by Susan Staley Some of my first favorite musical acts met and formed a sound aesthetic in their school days: bands like Talking Heads and most of the New Wave crowd at CBGB's: Velvet Underground, Steely Dan and Brian Eno and more recently, Soul Coughing and a whole swarm of interchange- ables coalescing in the Down Tempo/Big Beat scene. Album cover art was a fascinating sub genre when I hit high school in the last days of the mass market LP, and I collected whole books of the best by Roger Dean (who painted the far-out covers for groups Yes and Asia). I ve rarely put hours into anything requiring true concen tration without a good album there to provide the proper mood and pace, and at no time was all of that more personal to me than when I started out. "Rock Art: An Exhibit of Visual Art by Athens Musicians" picks up where my memo ries of tuned-in youthful discovery leave off. Curated by Melissa Link and Lizzie Zucker Saltz, "Rock Art" has the heady synergistic feel of a funked-up Algonquin round-table mixed with a tempering note of matured Athenian artistic talent. The Lyndon House Arts Center is the setting for a truly diverse but not chaotic anay of cre ations. As you enter, to the left you'll find a number of color-soaked meditative works, including Mischo McKay's "Untitled #16" ana "Diptych," abstract watercolors with purity and intrigue; and Michael Lachowski's "Untitled (Tan Water)" and "Untitled (Blue Water)" from the Puddle Series. "Blue Water" is particularly beau tiful, a large-format photo of revelatory detail that pins wings on your eyeballs for a fantastic journey through an astoundingly common miniature garden of light, water, mud and leaves. Susan Staley's quilt glass creations distill that purity of color and light into a crystalline architecture, capturing the flame of the visible spectrum for all tc see. A talented vocalist and dulcimer player, Staley's performance at the reception (minus her Solstice Sisters) gave pause to many a casually- attired rock-oriented townie. On your way back to the Atrium, don't miss the tight cartoon penwork of Tim Conley and Jack Logan. Logan's "Cockroach in a Suit with a Yo-yo and a Harmonica" ought to be taped up in cubicles and on the backs of office doors wcrld-wide. "Spoontang the Mojo Moonman" is defi nitely worth catching, and most of us can groan appreciatively when Spoontang asks the record-store guy, "Was Liberace from Mississippi?" You'll just have to read the whole comic strip. With a pause for some of the fine graphics displayed in the two snowcases, highlights of which include the profes sional work of Anne Richmond Boston and Larry Tenner's CD design "The Glands— Double Thriller," approach the booming, blooming he?rt of this Athens-arts-incubator. "Close Humid Adobo Exit," a mixed-media site-specific installa tion by the women of Dixie Blood Moustache, is a multi-chambered "discovery station" combining found sounds with audience partici pation and other assorted goodies. Kids wel come! Performing live, their combination of music, art and theater is one of the finest exam- "Spoontang the Mojo Moonman" by Jack Logan pies of Athens-induced art-scene synthesis. Drummer Mike Dwyer does rich, complex things with text and latex paint, as well as with his band Lona, as evidenced in "SOS #2." Incorporating his own song lyrics (displayed nearby for your convenience) provides the triple artistic entendre. "Anywhere is Better Than Here," a large canvas based on lyrics by the Replacements, displays equal wit and a successful blend of text and imagery. You shouldn't be sur prised to see the work of Jill Carnes nearby, so ubiquitous are her unabashedly emotive paint ings. She has what most youngsters lose after a few art "classes." Her band Thimble Circus' sample at the CD listening Station (don't miss this!) aptly apes her jangling colors and playful swooping characters. Thanks to Team Clermont for burning two sampler CDs that'll give you that third eye perspective. If you see Deonna Mann, get down on your knees and offer her anything for a special performance of "Thoughts from Benign Dementia," the force that animates her installation by the same title. Don't rush yourself into the Ronnie Lukasiewicz gallery without first pausing for three graceful, well-crafted works in steel by Alberto Salazarte, including the crowd-pleasing interactive "Sunvibes." Give tiiis one a try. Percussion art! Andy LeMaster's oil/mixed media paintings should dispel any lingering doubts the bobo crowd may have as to whether the work in this show constitutes "serious art." His "Cataract" is a bit of Egon Schiele, scaring at us from the depths of a swimming pool filled with Picassoid "blue period" emotion. "Egg in Vise" and "In Comparison to a Genius" are a bit more instructive, though I still feel like a fish staring out through the aquarium glass into the weird world beyond. These works hum with strength, augmented by LeMaster's Bright Eyes track, "The Movement of a Hand." Angie Grass with Tim Root presents "Unbound," a series of tin plate illustrations superimposed over stamped nanative text. I'm more into the materials than the message, but while you have Grass on the brain you should give a listen to her Weather Radio piece titled "Anglers." It's a subtly mixed series of layered unique and traditional sounds, trip-hop in its own way but with an identifiable Athens tint. I'm crossing my fingers for a CD release. Don Chambers' "The Wish Scarecrow," with photos by his daughter Grace, shares the same splintery, spooky, A pages from a book, with poignant accompanying sculptural remains, the "Scarecrow" story is evocative of Solstice night ceremonies and the smell of wood smoke. Somehow its crude magic makes "Scarecrow'’ a fine companion to Tim Nackashi's video for "Dog-Faced-Boy" by Empire State. An off-balance camera, children's games with hoops and contraptions, and the metaphysical uni versal wheel-within-a-wheel combine with ever- changing otherworldly imagery to produce an inspired piece reminiscent of the film Pi. The textural overlay effect is a grainy sepia-toned dream. A final funky flourish is added by works like Scott Sosebee's "Tigger & Jax," Kenny Aguaris spotless collages a la Plan 9 From Outer Space, lurid yet peaceful desert-floor watercolors by Bo Tompkins and Tim Conley's "Skidplus B" trans formed guitar. Vernon Thomsbeny is showing a bit more canvas these days, and that's a good thing. Just don't leave without catching two palette-cleansing pieces on your way out: the "Proctor & Gamble Triptych" by Lany Tenner, and Dan Donahue's "Body Electric," both-of which offer deceptively clean-cut takes on the visual vocabulary of our times. Congratulations to the 28 individual artists and collaborative teams, two curators and invaluable sponsors of "Rock Art." Don't miss the panel discussion by participation artists on Visual Art and Music at the Lyndon House on Thursday, July 13 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.. And don't forget the dosing reception on Saturday, July 29 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Live performances at the closing include Lona, Synchilla and The Flicker Orchestra. Make your vote known for more Pock Art offerings at AthFests to come! C WHAT: "Rock Art" WHERE: Lyndon House Arts Center WHEN: Through July 29 HOW MUCH: FREE! From: ATHENS 4 TIMES A DAY ATHENS: Super Iticdo. Los Compadres-1360 Prince Ave. 706.543.6777 Restaurant La Bamba-151 E Broad Street 706.543.0023 We are now inside PLAZA FIESTA 4166 Buford Hwy. - Suite 1023B 1-877-725-5287 OF GEORGIA ^ATLANTA 9* 90 2041 W. Proad Street • 353-1218 THE Largest Selection of Futons in Athens! For Home, Apartment, Dorm □ FLAGPOLE JULY 12, 2000 'Jailbird" by Alberto Salazarte