Punks and Paranoia

From the way he's loading our plates with stuff this spring, it seems Adam Lerner must have had one of those good Jewish mothers: Three shows -- Bruce Conner and the Primal Scene of Punk Rock, Richard Peterson: Artists and Rockers and Guarded, an installation piece by the artist collective Type A -- will bring a whole refrigerator-full of food for thought to the MCA's galleries, beginning tonight. The first two fall under the banner of an ambitious cross-city project, Search & Destroy, which includes shows at the Colorado Photographic Arts Center (see Thursday) and Gildar Gallery, plus, as the spring unfolds, other events and locations. MCA's focus is on two seminal observers of California's punk scene -- Bruce Conner and Richard Peterson -- who documented its major players, from musicians to performance artists, in photographs, videos, fliers and fanzines.

"Punk is a fusion of art and music, and it's clear that people are still captivated by that spirit," says MCA director Adam Lerner, who curated both shows (San Francisco arts maven Steven Wolf co-curated the Conner show). And there will be a lot to captivate here, beginning with the slew of compelling punk-rock photos.

The third show takes a whole different trip: Guarded explores airport security measures and their effect on travelers by placing an armed guard, who monitors thirty objects from TSA's list of potentially dangerous items, right in the gallery. Visitors will only be able to see these "dangerous" objects on closed-circuit monitors. Holy paranoia, Batman!

Tonight's opening at MCA, 1485 Delgany Street. will be more of a party, with late-night music by Mario Zoots and Modern Witch, and emcees Magic Cyclops and Ginger Perry, at 10:30 p.m.; that will be preceded by a curator's conversation with Steven Wolf and '70s rocker Penelope Houston at 6:30 p.m. (lecture admission is $5 to $10). And on another note, San Francisco punksters Flipper will hold forth tonight at the Lion's Lair, 2022 East Colfax Avenue 303-320-9200. For more information and a comprehensive schedule of upcoming events, visit www.mcadenver.org.
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: March 30. Continues through June 24, 2012


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