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Honky Tonk

  • Fri, 22 Jul 2011 - Sun, 18 Sep 2011
  • 10.00 AM - 6.00 PM
  • Tickets: Free

Mike Badger, Ed Blackburn, Linda Blackburn, Derek Boshier, Jim Burton, Randall Friedman, Steve Hardstaff & Neil Morris, Henry Horenstein, Norman Killon, Bruce Lee, Nicki McCubbing, Mark McNulty, Cruz Ortiz, Trish Simonite, Barry Worrall, Chen Xinpeng and Wong Hoy Cheong

 

Honky Tonk is an exhibition that investigates the country and western aesthetic found both in the music and popular culture of Liverpool and the United States, the original home of the honky tonk. These traditionally rough establishments offer cheap drinks, food, live music and dancing for a working class clientele and have over time been immortalised by iconic songs such as Hank Williams’ Honky Tonk Blues and Gram Parsons’ Close up the Honky Tonks.

 

Liverpool - where Johnny Cash’s Ring of Fire rings out from the Anfield terraces -has been described as the ‘Nashville of the North’ since the 1950s, spawning home-grown country from the likes of Hank Walters and the Hillsiders. The connections continue today with musicians like Mike Badger regularly playing at the SXSW showcase in Austin, Texas.

 

The exhibition draws similarities between Liverpool, Austin, Memphis and other Southern cities. Artists from both sides of the Atlantic and beyond bring together art, music and the honky tonk, providing a contemporary response through painting, video, photography and installation. Infused with irony, humour and playfulness, the show explores pleasure through language, behaviour and the DIY nature of entertainment. Also included is archival material provided by local country fans, reflecting a fascination with cowboy culture, Western films and, naturally, music. 

 

 

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