The Track 16 Gallery in Santa Monica will present The Beautiful & the Damned, an exhibition of photographs by Ann Summa of the musicians, artists and fans who made Los Angeles an important part of the history of punk rock, beginning Thursday, Sept. 9 through Oct. 9.
An opening reception is scheduled from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11 at the gallery at Bergamot Station, 2525 Michigan Ave. C1, Santa Monica. The exhibit is curated by Kristine McKenna.
When photographer Summa arrived in Los Angeles in 1978, she said the city’s punk rock scene was still fresh and utterly original.
Drawn from Summa’s new book, The Beautiful & the Damned, recently published by Foggy Notion Books and Smart Art Press, the exhibition will feature a selection of images from the book, along with alternate shots and outtakes.
Including 60 images taken between 1978 and 1984, the show focuses primarily on L.A.’s first punk generation, and includes portraits of the Germs, the Screamers, X, the Cramps and the Gun Club, among many others. The show expands its scope from there to highlight the cross- pollination that took place between L.A.’s punk scene and the fine art community, Summa says.
Completing the story are photographs of musicians from the two other cities —London and New York — that played a central role in the birthing of punk. Photographed in L.A. during their first U.S. tours are United Kingdom groups The Clash, Magazine, The Fall, The Slits, Bow Wow Wow and The Pretenders, among others. Visiting dignitaries from New York include Television, James Chance, Lydia Lunch and Talking Heads.
Also included are portraits of artists who served as an inspiration to L.A. punk musicians such as Captain Beefheart, Iggy Pop and David Bowie, among others — and candid shots of unidentified audience members. The photographs are, for the most part, previously un-exhibited silver gelatin prints, many of them vintage photographs printed by the artist.