Art exhibit by funk musician George Clinton to premiere in New Orleans

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George Clinton, photo by JM Schneid via Wikimedia

New Orleans will host Free your mind, the very first solo exhibition of paintings and drawings by legendary musician George Clinton. The exhibition will open at SPILLMAN | BLACKWELL Fine Art on October 2, the date of Art for Art’s Sake, and will remain on view until November 3, which coincides with the artist’s 80th birthday and across town Perspective 5 triennial of contemporary art exhibitions.

Free your mind will showcase recent paintings as well as historical works from the past thirty years, and offer a unique insight into Clinton’s journey as a visual artist. In the 1970s and 1980s, Clinton revolutionized music and performance through the pioneering work of the Parliament-Funkadelic group. His original sounds and visual sensibility are part of the founding DNA of electronic funk, gangsta-funk and hip-hop. Clinton continues to have an extraordinary influence on popular music and culture and has inspired the works of countless musicians, including Snoop Dog, Ice Cube, Dr. Dre and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, among others.

Clinton’s paintings and sculptures echo themes from his music, including images from his iconic “Atomic Dog” and “Mothership”.

Digital stamping (2020), an aerosol and pastel acrylic paint work by George Clinton, is among the works included in the exhibition Free your mind. Photo by Larry Coltharp, courtesy of Spring McManus Art Advisory.

“As a visual artist, Clinton’s work is as adventurous and eclectic as his music,” said Spring McManus, who manages sales of Clinton’s visual works. “His rhythm and energy translate into lyrical compositions with ample shapes. “

When her farewell tour was canceled due to the pandemic, Clinton spent quarantine in her studio in Florida, creating new paintings as well as a series of painted birdhouses. A selection of these works will also be presented. Clinton’s work is enjoying renewed national and international importance. A replica of her “mother ship”, considered one of the most iconic stage props in African American music history, is now on view as part of Mothership: Journey into Afrofuturism, a group exhibition at the Oakland Museum of Art.

Clinton’s work inspired the Afrofuturist movement and appears alongside artists such as Wangechi Mutu, Dora Milaje, and William Cordova. A percentage of the proceeds from the sale of Free your mind will be donated to the Clinton Foundation, Protecting Our Legacy, which helps musicians and their families acquire and retain rights to their works. To celebrate this exhibition as well as Prospect.5, SPILLMAN | BLACKWELL will host an opening reception on October 23, where the artist will be in attendance.

In an interview with the December 2017 edition of Shifted, Clinton said, “Funk is an international language. Anyone can speak it. It is an interplanetary language! Read the full conversation here.

For more information on the gallery, located at 866 Camp Street, visit here.


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