When asked if he listened to music whilst painting, Peter Doig replied
'don't all artists'? Art and music go hand in hand. Just look at the
title of this magazine if you need any further proof.
To acknowledge this, the Transition Gallery in East London has invited
68 artists to create visual art in tribute to their favourite lyrics.
Lyrics are always interpreted in different ways, and seeing those
interpretations through a visual medium means the finished product has
had three transitions - from the lyrics being sung, deciphered by the
artist and then bought to fruition with paintings, photography et al.
So the final piece is likely to have no bearing whatsoever on what the
singer meant in the first place, but more indicative of the artist's
As expected, these works are inspired by an eclectic mix of musicians
- from Lemon D to Elvis, The Rolling Stones to The Ting Tings, pretty
much all genres are covered.
Sarah Doyle's 'Spooky Electric' turns a seemingly innocent Prince song
into a werewolf-esque nightmare using a mirror, nail varnish and
'Is there anybody out there?' by Claire Pestaille uses a classic Pink
Floyd line transformed into an alien-like skeletal figure with nowhere
in particular to go.
Joseph Ryken gives us a dark but amusing piece in 'It's ice cream and
jelly and a punch in the belly', taken from a song by The Birthday
Party (gone wrong).
The depressing Morrissey makes an appearance in Tamara Dubnyckyj's
painting of a suitably sedate dining room populated by ghosts in 'An
afternoon nostalgia television show / You spoke in silhouette but they
couldn't name you'.
And I would loved to have been a fly on the wall of Jasper Joffe's
studio as he painted his frankly hilarious 'Like A Virgin' - probably
not quite what Madonna had in mind when she coined her hit song back
Perhaps in honour of what Warhol achieved with The Velvet Underground, the
Transition Gallery has imitated music with art with an honest
commentary on popular culture over the last fifty years.
Awopbopaloobop was on from 15th November - 21st December at the Transition
Gallery, London E8