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Art and Architecture: An Art Book - Malcolm McLaren: Musical Paintings

February 2, 2010

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Malcolm Mclaren, visionary artist and pop cultural icon, conversing with Cay-Sophie Rabinowitz, curator and editor of FANTOM magazine discussing McLaren's recent film based art work and his new book Malcolm McLaren: Musical Paintings published by JRP|Ringier.

“Today,” declares svengali-at-large Malcolm McLaren, “there are two words that sum up the culture: ‘authenticity' is one and the other…‘Karaoke'! Many artists spend their entire life trying to authenticate, make true, a karaoke culture—but you have to be a magician to make that happen.”

This book, like the exhibition from which it stems, is built around McLaren's Shallow, a series of 21 “musical paintings” made from a “grab bag of pop culture's debris over the past 50 years.” The project, curated by Bernd Wurlitzer, brought together music-related works by Rodney Graham, Damien Hirst, Jack Pierson, Rob Pruitt, and Andreas Schulze among others. McLaren has proven to be a visionary of pop culture and a pop cultural icon for more than 30 years; with Shallow, he formally announces his identity as an artist.

Malcolm McLaren first gained attention as the legendary manager of the Sex Pistols, the premier punk rock band of the late '70s and the founder of a highly influential fashion store with Vivienne Westwood that created the punk fashion movement. In the 1980s, McLaren became a performance artist himself turning out highly influential records in Great Britain. In the last few years McLaren has emerged as a contemporary artist exhibiting around the world.

Cay-Sophie Rabinowitz is the Editor of FANTOM a new quarterly journal on contemporary photography and former Senior Editor of Parkett. Currently she also holds a senior position at Hauser & Wirth in New York. 

In its third season the program series An Art Book, initiated and organized by Arezoo Moseni, is a celebration of the essential importance and beauty of art books. The events showcase book presentations and discussions by world renowned artists, critics, curators, historians and writers.