A BOOK ABOUT DEATH takes its inspiration from the late, underground American artist Ray Johnson. Conceptual artist and inventor of “Correspondence Art,” Ray Johnson mailed his original unbound “book” to friends and to his New York Correspondence School “students.” The pages, in his idiosyncratic style, were funny, sad and ironic one page visual meditations on death and life. Ray lived on Long Island, NY and committed suicide there in 1995.
The first ABAD show in 2009 was the brain child of Paris-based American artist Matthew Rose. He was influenced by the mail art work of Ray Johnson and invited artists to contribute 500 identical postcards on any aspect of the theme of death. The show took place at the Emily Harvey Foundation Gallery in NYC. Visitors were encouraged to collect one of every card and take them home. The pages, of every kind of design imaginable, approached this universal subject from every point of view–personal, metaphysical, conceptual and abstract. This original show is now in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art NYC, the MoMA Wales, UK and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and included work from artists as well known as Yoko Ono and as obscure as Dame Mailarta.
ABAD has since grown into an international art movement that continues to travel across the US and internationally. ABAD has shown in Brazil, Belgium, the UK, Croatia, Italy, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Mexico. It has spawned dozens of collaborative exhibitions on three continents.
This new exhibition celebrates THE TIES THAT BIND all living things universally through death, as well as the creative ties which now bind thousands of artists that literally reach around the world.
The Bay Shore, LI exhibit will feature for the first time new work from worldwide artists that are actual book pages like Ray Johnson originally created in 1963, and NOT postcards. The pages will be bound by the curator into a handmade volume and displayed at the exhibition, thereby furnishing an Omega to the Alpha of the Unbound Book from the original NYC show.
There have been many performance pieces included in these shows but never any music. For this show, I would love to feature some live New Orleans Funeral Jazz! That is primarily what I am raising the money for. I also need to print up posters and fund publicity and other items for the opening reception.
- (30 days)