Published on the occasion of Rebel Rebel. Art + Rock, a major exhibition programmed by the MAC’s at Grand-Hornu in 2016, this book proposes a journey across contemporary art through the prism of rock and its three principal facets. Featuring the songs of Hank Williams and Patti Smith, among others, the first facet highlights artists who, like Dan Graham, Allen Ruppersberg and David Askevold, were interested in the vernacular roots of rock music. The second, an iconic facet in the image of Elvis Presley, Deborah Harry or Kurt Cobain, includes works that tackle the vanities of stardom and its glamorous aesthetics, such as those by Mimmo Rotella, Douglas Gordon and General Idea. Lastly, shaded by the darkness of punk groups like The Stooges and Ramones, the third facet of rock presents iconoclastic artists who, like Art & Language, Steven Parrino and Jonathan Monk, deconstruct the Modernist myth of the author of genius. Each of these facets corresponds to a chapter in the book which, beginning with ‘art-rock’ duos (Andy Warhol + Bob Dylan, Tony Oursler + Sonic Youth, Jeremy Deller + New Order, etc.), is organised according to various iconographic plates. Enriched with biographies, a chronology and a glossary, these three parts, respectively entitled ‘Roots’, ‘Looks’ and ‘Fools’, form the core of a publishing project in which rock music and contemporary art come together in a hybrid, rebellious combination.
Grand Hornu, MAC’s, 23 October 2016 –22 January 2017