Orgies and Polka Dots
Last week I wrote about Yayoi Kusama for The Atlantic‘s website. This week I learned that Specific Object and David Platzker have mounted “Screw You.,” an exhibition “that shines a light on the intercourse of counter culture publishing, tabloid pornography and the art world which formed a union during the creatively fertile years of the late 1960s and early 1970s,” Platzker says. “Screw You.” will be on view at Susan Inglett Gallery from May 31 to July 13, 2012.
Issues of Screw throughout the late 1960s and the early 1970s included contributors from the realm of visual culture such as Dan Graham, Andy Warhol, John Lennon, and Yoko Ono. It set journalistic standards for countercultural publications by addressing issues such as freedom of speech, while simultaneously raising pornographic standards of imagery.
Kusama’s own tabloid, Kusama Presents an Orgy of Nudity, Love, Sex Beauty played to the strengths of the genre, while contemporaneous periodicals such as New York Review of Sex and Politics (which I co-published in 1969) favored a merging of literature and art in addition to its sexual content.
“Screw You.” unsheathes the sex periodicals of the late 1960s and ’70s, “rescuing them from the literal and metaphorical trash bin to sit side by side with the original art and films that filled the page and informed an era. These publications open a window onto an enlightened generation and the art and influences which gave rise to the counterculture.”
The exhibition will be on view at Susan Inglett Gallery, at 522 West 24th Street.