It is appropriate to accompany the Richard Prince: Douglas Turnbaugh Collection (1977-1988) with a small group show of artists whose work was part of the zeitgeist of the 80s. All had work included in thematic exhibitions with Prince, and many were personal friends. From the mid-70s to the end of the 80s there was an ongoing dialogue between a generation of artists in New York and Los Angeles. Some connected through associations with CalArts or alternative spaces like LAICA and LACE in Los Angeles or Artist Space and the Kitchen in New York. Working with appropriated images in painting, music, photography and video, as a collective group they helped redefine their chosen fields with intellectual rigor and wit. At the time, there were not many opportunities for showing the work outside of artist–run spaces and clubs; their primary audience was themselves. Some shared interests were: the question of originality and authenticity (Bernard), an exploration of what is “real” and what is artifice (Bolande/Ross), the representation of women and the “other” in mass culture (Rosenberg/Simmons/Yonemoto) and how technology reframes our world and the personal (Cowin/Legrady). European, Hollywood and experimental film (Beckman), commercial photography and advertising (Syrop), punk and no-wave music and art (McMahon/Vallance), performance and spectacle (Goldstein), and post-modern literature (Dike Blair) were also common influences and inspirations.
- Carole Ann Klonarides