Tag: Richard McGuire

An artist of the everyday

The small but fascinating Richard McGuire exhibit at downtown New York City’s Alden Projects has been extended through November 18th. If you aren’t really familiar with the street art that the New Jersey-born visionary multidisciplinary artist and comics creator produced during the late 1970s and early 1980s—newsprint graphic work he’d wheatpasted all over the Lower East Side, wildly dynamic show fliers, and more—a trip to Orchard Street during the course of this month will do you some good. (A bigger show in Connecticut features sculptures, too.)

At NYC arts and politics paper The Brooklyn Rail, Megan N. Liberty writes about the exhibitions and the new monograph that accompanies the Alden Projects show, declaring McGuire “an artist of the everyday.” Here’s Liberty:

The diversity of Richard McGuire’s work is surprising; from his illustrations for The New Yorker and McSweeney’s and published graphic novels Here (2014) and Sequential Drawings (2016) that treat the book as a sculptural object—something I’ve argued in a previous review of Here—to his musical and performance career as a founding member of the post-punk band Liquid Liquid, McGuire’s artistic output is multidisciplinary. Richard McGuire: Art For The Street 1978 – 1982, published to accompany the show of the same title at Alden Projects, NY, adds a new layer to this impressive body of work, detailing his early years enmeshed in the performance and street art scene exhibiting work in museums and galleries alongside Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Harring, with whom he became friends, and on the street alongside Jenny Holzer’s Truisms and SAMO© poetry. 

Read the whole piece at The Brooklyn Rail. Back in 2014, I wrote about McGuire’s graphic novel Here at my site.

An answer to graffiti art

In anticipation of two new solo exhibitions of his work opening in New York City, writer Brett Sokol profiles street artist, illustrator, and comics creator Richard McGuire. From The New York Times:

Posters featuring Ixnae Nix receive central billing, drawing upon nearly 150 variations that Mr. McGuire plastered throughout Soho, Tribeca and the East Village. Using oversized sheets of blank newsprint he would spray paint a silhouette of the spiky-haired Ixnae Nix, usually in a state of frenetic motion, and then use a crayon to neatly fill the edges with cryptic text, all without spacing or punctuation. The net effect married a hard-boiled voice straight out of old detective movies — “I Knew She Could Whistle;” “Someone No One Remembers Who;” “Good And Sick Of The Whole Business” — to unsettling science-fiction imagery, akin to Jean-Luc Godard’s film “Alphaville.”

But Mr. McGuire says he was more inspired by rumblings from underground than the stars above.

“I wanted to do an answer to graffiti art,” he recalled. “I can still see that cast of character names when the subway would pull into the station, all with their own code names: Futura, Lady Pink. So I had mine: Ixnae Nix. I would hear those words in 1940s movies. Ixnae is the pig Latin of nix. And I like the double negation, it just sounds good.”

exhibitions New York City Richard McGuire

In Manhattan, Alden Projects will host Richard McGuire: Art for the Street–1978-1982, and at MoMA PS1, another exhibition will open this weekend at the New York Art Book Fair. Four years ago, in association with a show at The Morgan Library & Museum, Pantheon Books published McGuire’s Here, a stunning, full-color graphic novel grounded in an experimental black and white strip that the artist contributed to anthology magazine RAW in 1989 (see my post). Read Brett Sokol’s story here.

“Here” original strip © 1989 Raw Books & Graphics.

Richard McGuire: Here

richard mcguire hereArtists-editors Françoise Mouly and Art Spiegelman launched an avant garde anthology magazine called RAW in 1980 that focused largely on comics, but featured other visual art, all the work of globally sourced contributors.