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Old 05.09.2007, 11:51 PM   #1
Moshe
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http://www.portlandmercury.com/portl...category=22127


Arnold J. Kemp

Presents Suspiria and Prince of Darkness




BY CHAS BOWIE
Nearly 20 years ago, a young artist named Arnold J. Kemp was working at a used camera store in Boston when a customer came in, browsing the Bolex cameras. Bored, Kemp started chatting up the customer, who wound up buying not one but two expensive cameras and introducing himself as Lee Ranaldo of Sonic Youth. The guitarist offered Kemp a pair of tickets to see their show that night—they were touring in support ofDaydream Nation—and the show, Kemp says, changed the artist's life.
"It changed my thinking about what art could be, about abstraction. It took me out of my areas of knowledge and experience—it was something totally new and different, and that's what I'm trying to do with my work and the project here in Portland."
Kemp is currently in Portland as an artist-in-residence for the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art's (PICA) Time-Based Art Festival (TBA), working on a project calledDaydream Nation: Suspiria Version.
Kemp's Daydream Nation takes the form of black monochrome canvases, which have an uncommonly visceral depth to them, thanks to their large scale and use of unconventional materials like enamel, black glitter, and vinyl. At TBA, Kemp will be exhibiting these paintings, along with a curated show, which is where Suspiria—and you—come in.
Suspiria is Dario Argento's classic underground horror flick from 1977, which, along with John Carpenter's Prince of Darkness, were hugely influential on Kemp's Daydream Nation paintings. When PICA asked Kemp to do some sort of community outreach as part of his residency—a free lecture, perhaps—Kemp decided to involve Portland artists more directly in his show. This Thursday, May 10, Kemp will screen Suspiria at the Clinton Street Theater, and he's inviting people to create art inspired by the films. He'll then curate an exhibition from the results, which will be shown as part of TBA, in conjunction with his own paintings.
Interested artists can email PICA's Kristan Kennedy (kristan@pica.org) for submission guidelines, but first you've got to show up and watch the films. Who knows—they could very easily wind up changing the way you think about art and taking you outside your areas of knowledge and experience.
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Old 05.10.2007, 12:51 AM   #2
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Pretty cool......Suspiria rules.
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Old 05.10.2007, 02:38 AM   #3
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Suspiria does indeed rule, but I'm still confused about how the film and Daydream Nation will be fitting together? The music of the album doesn't exactly fit the film. This all seems very random to me, like this guy had two completely unrelated interests and decided to meld them together.

I love a lot of films and albums but that doesn't mean I think they should go hand in hand. This summer I may just have to curate, Tapestry: Nosferatu version, and Lateralus: Gone with the Wind version.
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Old 05.10.2007, 06:11 AM   #4
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suspiria is way overrated, only notable for the first death scene and its oversaturated look. in fact, i'd rate it near the bottom as far as argento goes. he did so so much better.
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Old 05.10.2007, 06:16 AM   #5
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Yeah, Suspiria looks ace but I think I prefer Deep Red and Tenebre.
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Old 05.10.2007, 06:19 AM   #6
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Deep Red is a much better movie than Suspiria.
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Old 05.10.2007, 06:28 AM   #7
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Inferno rules.
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Old 05.10.2007, 07:45 AM   #8
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tenebre is my fav, but i gotta give a shoutout to opera and stendhal syndrome. people rate those as some of argento's worst, and i never quite figured out why...
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Old 05.10.2007, 07:51 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nicfit
Inferno rules.
That's not bad either. I liked Non Ho Sonno/Sleepless too, even though I wasn't expecting much from it.
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Old 05.10.2007, 07:58 AM   #10
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I like both Daydream Nation and Suspiria but I have no idea what to make of a "Daydream Nation: Suspiria Version". It sounds a bit rubbish.
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Old 05.10.2007, 08:38 AM   #11
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It does sound rubbish doesn't it.

I haven't seen Stendahl Syndrome but I liked Opera a fair bit. I like Sleepless quite a bit as well despite some of the dodgy dubbing and second rate acting.
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Old 05.10.2007, 09:43 AM   #12
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You've all expressed it rather well.

The announcement made me think of all-black compositions throughout popular culture. Of course, Rauschenberg's "White Paintings" from the '50s inspired John Cage to do 4'33'' of silence. Rauschenberg later did some paintings that became known as "the black paintings," but they weren't all black. After the release of the White Album (1968), a bootleg called "The Black Album" appeared for The Beatles' 1969 sessions for Let It Be. In 1987, Prince almost released The Black Album. In 2003, Dj n-We did a mash-up of Jay-Z and Pavement called The Black Album. Of course countless bands have made covers that were mostly black. The first one I remember of this variety is probably AC/DC's Back in Black.

The post also made me think of a shop-owner and some friends of mine back in Athens. He repaired bikes, computers, & cameras and sold used cameras. The Rolling Stones wanted some vintage cameras for crowd members to film their performace with, so they got some there. I see Lee opted for a Bolex, Warhol's oft-chosen camera.

Ihad a drawing this guy would have liked. It was for a college art school class. I found out early that professors didn't want real art. They often told me that I was ten lesson plans or whatever ahead of what they were trying to teach. I would tell them that I found their criticism odd and that I can't just do some project, that I have to make it a work or art that also satisfies the criteria of the project. Anyway, sorry to get extra-vague there. This drawing was on a large sheet of rag paper in ink and black acrylic. It featured a mostly (blah) centr4alized composition which was a large slanted shadow of a demonic figure. There was one object in the picture, which was a pitchfork done up in great modeled detail in the foreground. The angle was such that one could only see the pitchfork being held and then the shadow of the figure with the pitchfork. Around this drawing were various alchemical drawings I found in the mid-section of C.G. Jung's Mysterium Conjunctionis. I had already made larger drawings of the drawings from the Middle Ages in the Jung book. I traced those onto tracing paper, and then traced over the lines with ink and monoprinted a a bunch of these cool drawings all around the large picture in the middle of the demon shadow. I thought the drawing was shit even though it looked cool I guess and many people seemed to like it. Anyway, this Portland dude would have dug it I bet.
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Old 05.12.2007, 01:31 PM   #13
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Ahh those who pass judgment before they know or ask... Kemp was screening Suspiria and Prince of Darkenss to key people in on some related influences, both topically and visually. I don't see a need to have a literal connection between the album and the movies and his art- but I do see that they are related. The films were picked because they both highlight halucinatory dream states so what's the relation to daydream nation- well first off seeing sonic youth that night mentioned in the article changed his perceptions, as did the films. His paintings are not literal translations of either, but are in conversation with the strange political, racial and straight up beautiful raw imagery both the films and daydream nation conjure. Regardless of all of this blather, it was a great night and I look forward to seeing the resulting exhibition.
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