George Kuchar: Snapshots & Twisted Tales / Mulherin + Pollard, New York

George Kuchar is a legendary American underground filmmaker who is known for his lo-fi autobiographies. He was born in New York in 1942 and died in 2011 in San Francisco. George Kuchar began his career in the 1950s when he and his twin brother Mike made 8mm burlesques of Hollywood productions. George Kuchar is one of the artists whose work is shown in the Whitney Biennial 2012 in New York. From April 18 through 22, 2012, The Whitney Biennial is screening George Kuchar’s Weather Diaries, which document his annual visits to the shappy El Reno motel in Oklahoma. The exhibition at the gallery Mulherin + Pollard in New York is dedicated to the late filmmaker as well, but with a focus on the graphic work that he produced in the 1970s, when he actively returned to his childhood interests in comics. George Kuchar: Snapshots & Twisted Tales at Mulherin + Pollard runs until March 25, 2012.

George Kuchar: Snapshots & Twisted Tales / Mulherin + Pollard, New York. Opening reception, March 1, 2012.

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Press release:

John Pollard is pleased to present Snapshots & Twisted Tales, an exhibition of works by the late filmmaker at Mulherin + Pollard, NYC

In the 1970s, Kuchar actively returned to his childhood interests in comics, and the current exhibition Snapshots & Twisted Tales will focus on the graphic work that he produced during this period and published in Arcade: The Comics Revue, a magazine begun with the noted underground artists Art Spiegelman and Bill Griffith, neighbors of Kuchar’s in San Francisco. Arcade included work by a variety of other artists, including George’s twin brother Mike, as well as R. Crumb. The show will also feature a few of George’s childhood drawings, early cartoons made in the mid 1950s when he was a student studying commercial art at the School of Industrial Art (later the Manhattan School of Art and Design). These drawings prefigure some of his signature future themes and preoccupations centering on food, heartthrobs, and the struggles and mortifications of everyday living. The exhibition will also include a selection of his photographs””portraits and personal snapshots of friends and various locales encountered on his many travels.

He has recently garnered new attention and recognition in the contemporary film and art worlds marked by his retrospective exhibition at MoMA PS1, “George Kuchar: Pagan Rhapsodies,” as the subject of a recent article in the February Artforum, and his inclusion in the forthcoming 2012 Whitney Biennial (at the Whitney Museum of American Art, March 1-May 27, 2012), which will be showing a selection of his Weather Diaries, a series of video works produced between 1986 and 2011.

Kuchar produced many paintings, works on paper, comics, and photographs during his lifetime, some of which were featured in the recent show at PS1. His works are represented by the ADA Gallery of Richmond, Virginia, whose director and owner, John Pollard, is also co-owner of Mulherin & Pollard, ADA’s sister gallery.

With a catalog that includes over 200 films and videos, George Kuchar’s artwork has been recognized through countless awards and grants, including The National Endowment for the Arts, The Eureka Fellowship Program, and a Ford Foundation Fellowship from United States Artists. He is the recipient of the prestigious Maya Deren Award for Independent Film and Video Artists from the American Film Institute, and the Los Angeles Film Critics Award for Independent/Experimental Film and Video. Kuchar’s work has screened around the globe in cinemas, festivals, and major museums, including The Museum of Modern Art, New York, and the Pompidou Center in Paris.

His films include Hold Me While I’m Naked (1966), selected by the Village Voice as no. 52 on its list of the 100 Best Films of the 20th Century; Eclipse Of the Sun Virgin (1967); and I, An Actress (1977), selected by the Library of Congress this past year for inclusion to the National Film Registry. His video works include Weather Diaries (1986-2011), and Secrets of the Shadow World (1989-99).

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