Saturday, October 20, 2007

MCA celebrates 40 years with Sympathy for the Devil

Chicago's Museum of Contemporary Art is turning 40 this year, and to celebrate has been offering 40 days of free entry.

The showcase exhibition, titled
Sympathy for the Devil: Art and Rock and Roll Since 1967, examines the relationship between rock music culture and contemporary art over the past 40 years.

According to MCA curator Dominic Molon, the title Sympathy for the Devil suggests:

...the risks involved when these cultural forms intersect. Contemporary art potentially sacrifices its seriousness and sophistication, and rock and roll risks pretentiousness and obscurity through its cultivation of avante-garde styles, approaches, and techniques. Regardless of these possible drawbacks, contemporary artists have drawn on rock music's intensity, ever-changing style, and youthful sense of confrontation and social provocation; rock and roll has looked to art for its openness to innovation and experimentation.

The rebellious and creative nature of rock n roll has often been reflected in the works of contemporary artists, just as the works of such artists as Andy Warhol have had equal influence on bands like The Velvet Underground. This art-inspiring-art credence has lead to an exhibition which focuses on original pieces of artwork instead of album covers and promotional materials. A walking audio tour includes a playlist of songs essential to the exhibit.

The weekend I attended, the museum was packed with art and music lovers from across the board. Outdoors, the crowd raved to the musical performance of DJ group
Flosstradamus whilst drinking locally-brewed Goose Island ales.

Although Sympathy for the Devil: Art and Rock and Roll Since 1967 runs until January 6, 2008, you can save yourself the cost of admission by attending before November 14.

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