The exhibition “Punk Magazine Mutant Monster Beach Party” was a celebration of the work of John Holmstrom, the legacy of Punk Magazine, and the recent acquisition of the Punk Magazine Archive by Yale University.
The “Mutant Monster Beach Party” issue of Punk Magazine is arguably the pinnacle of 70s NYC punk graphics. It is a fumetti starring the ace faces of the CBGB/Max’s punk scene in a cinematic narrative that is equal doses ridiculous and sublime. Drawn and directed by John Holmstrom and photographed by Roberta Bayley, “Mutant Monster Beach Party” features work and appearances by Legs McNeil, Debbie Harry, Joey Ramone, Andy Warhol, Anya Phillips, Chris Stein, Arturo Vega, Bob Gruen, John Cale, Lester Bangs, David Johansen, and Joan Jett. Somewhere between The Horror of Party Beach, EC Comics, and the classic LPs by Blondie, the Ramones, and the Dictators, the trash-mutant lowlife/punk aesthetic that has ruled evermore can here be seen unfolding before us.
Coinciding with the exhibition, Boo-Hooray published Punk Graffiti Contest No. 17 – Shaun Cassidy, a zine collecting the submissions to the second Punk Magazine Graffiti Contest, announced in Punk #17 in 1979. The first graffiti contest invited readers to deface a photograph of Patti Smith; the second featured Shaun Cassidy. Punk received a number of submissions, but Punk #18 was cancelled and the pieces never published. The zine was published in an edition of 125 copies, each signed, numbered, and with an original Shaun Cassidy graffiti done by John Holmstrom.