The High Street Project, Christchurch
April 11 - May 3, 1997
"it goes . . . Violet California . . . okay?Violet Cal - a -
forn - i - a" and "DOORAG: DRUMS, ROCK CRITICISM, TROUBLE SHOOTING-
LADIES' HAIRSTYLE CONSULTANCY"
And together . . . Violet "California" Faigan and Duane "Doorag"
Zarakov present(ed) Codename: Frida . . . culminating snaps,
memoirs, art and rock into a whimsical brother-sister duet featuring
records, singing shoes and lots more.
This oddly seductive low-fi aesthetic resonates Is's and Was's with
a touch of dreamscape, rockscape, teenscape, (e)scape delicately
laced with nightmare . . . knock me down on the lawn, . . . they
twisted my arm, stuck grass in my face . . . An echoing of a
sometimes broken soundtrack leaves a kind of hollow reminiscence
. . . I was following this girl there, or she was following me,
and it felt like the movies . . . setting the 'scene' for a
rock reply to the late 'art on rock' fashion using a gallery space
Duane's eclectic collections of highly personalised texts images
and musings 'sprawling aimlessly across the gallery wall'
(as Warren Feeney so aptly put it) forms an index of, and context
for Codename: Frida . . . witty, self conscious, self aware,
a little bit awkward . . . somehow mirroring an 'aimless sprawl'
of teen culture, rockworlds and self(s) in a constant state of reflection,
dissection and parody.
In fanmail, funmail, odes to a rockstar rockworld, compliments to
'Violet Cal-a-forn-i-a', it is written my dear violet, on september
18, 1970 i will die. you will enter this world, you will be left
handed, you will be black, i must die now.-jimi hendrix. Offset
by the prominent speech bubble announcement of Patti Smith "YOUR
SHOW SUX DOORAG" there lingers the ambience of, and clever jabs
at, a "generation X" discredited 'buy darts' . . . and quite
possibly Art. This angst-humour analysis is reminiscent of ironic-self-analysis
of past-present youth/Rock/Punk cultures such as X-Ray Spex (mentioned
in Duane's dairy excerpts) who sing of a 'germ free adolescence
. . . scrub away, scrub away, scrub away . . . '
Self consciously aware and time wary (as opposed to Warren Feeney's
recent description of 'timeworn'), Codename: Frida becomes
much much more than a mere shrine to 60's and 70's pop culture.
It 'becomes' art as a kind of rock analysis of rock culture: not
just a dead fashionable rock aesthetic but a comment on it, from
within rather than the usual without.
you are great !! I love your music, especially your singing,
you sound like Patti Smith. You look like Drew Barrymore, but prettier
Love Jad Fair
P.S. You're Beautiful
10 May 1997