"They put me next to Dali, and I'm like, Yeah!" said System of a Down's Shavo Odadjian, standing between Salvador Dali's Triumphant Elephant and his own Nocturnal Art. Odadjian's work featured the Armenian genocide on one side and the artist on-stage on the other. Up at the top was a heavenly image, Odadjian's version of the future to complete his past and present.
As with many of the other "Come Together" paintings on display last night at Andrew Weiss Gallery, the musician was central to the image. Odadjian's work was created in collaboration with SceneFour, just like the paintings by Wu Tang Clan's RZA, Public Enemy's Chuck D, Helmet's Page Hamilton, Fishbone's Angelo Moore and DJ Qbert, and they all featured the same crisp, signature look.
Standing outside the gallery to escape the heat from the crowd, Chuck D chatted with fans about politics, letting them know current woes will pass. "Governments come and governments go," he said. "Nothing ever lasts 500 years." This Buddhist-like sense of calm was in contrast to the timeliness of his painting, which commented directly on SB1070, Arizona's recent anti-immigration law.
The works in "Come Together" came about when SceneFour partners Cory Danziger and Ravi Dosaj decided to merge the worlds of music and visual art, and each Giclée print was customized by the musician before being hung among the gallery's Dalis and Chagalls. The show runs through November 1.
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One musician who didn't feature his own visage was Frankie "Kash" Waddy, drummer for Parliament Funkadelic. His two works contained fluid strokes and an undeniable sense of rhythm. "I made those in the dark," he said, pointing at one particularly bouncy set of lines. We had no trouble believing him.