Jack Smith: Wait for Me at the Bottom of the Pool

Jack Smith: Wait for Me at the Bottom of the Pool

Friday, Feb 15, 2013 - Friday, Mar 01, 2013

Boo-Hooray (Canal Street)
265 Canal Street, Suite 601
New York, NY 10013

The whole of western culture exudes the distinctive aroma of slowing frying mermaid filleted. — Jack Smith

Jonas Mekas and Johan Kugelberg curated “Wait For Me At The Bottom Of The Pool,” artwork, ephemera, and photography by Jack Smith. The exhibition at Boo-Hooray opened on Valentine’s Day, February 14th, 2013.

Jack Smith, 1932-1989, was a master of the exotic idiom, working in theatre, underground film, photography, graphic design, drawing, and slideshows. He was one of the path-finding pioneers of American post-war underground aesthetics. Boo-Hooray exhibited handbills, posters, photographs, letters, artwork and collages by Jack Smith, spanning his career.

He could spend hours readjusting some peripheral aspect of a pile of debris, puncturing long silences only with occasional cryptic non sequiturs about penguins or a startling piece of extremely bad nutritional advice.  — Gary Indiana

Unlike Warhol, who had a genius for attracting and holding on to collaborators and powerful supporters, Smith, who was fully as charismatic, was a Blakean agonist in his personal relations, thriving on enmity, with the power to mythologize his antagonisms, his obsessions, and his fantasies.  — P. Adams Sitney

Boo-Hooray and Anthology Film Archives also hosted an evening of Jack Smith films. The program featured Smith’s first film, Scotch Tape (1962, 3 minutes, 16 mm, color) and his masterpiece Flaming Creatures (1963, 45 minutes, 16 mm, black and white). Judith Malina presented the films and gave a talk that night as well.

Jack Smith was to Republic Pictures what an idiot savant is to square roots.  — Rene Ricard

At once primitive and sophisticated, hilarious and poignant, spontaneous and studied, frenzied and languid, crude and delicate, avant and nostalgic, gritty and fanciful, fresh and faded, innocent and jaded, high and low, raw and cooked, underground and camp, black and white and white-on-white, composed and decomposed, richly perverse and gloriously impoverished, Flaming Creatures was something new under the sun. Had Jack Smith produced nothing other than this amazing artifact, he would still rank among the great visionaries of American film.  — J. Hoberman

Boo-Hooray published Wait For Me At The Bottom Of The Pool, an 11 x 15, 114 page annotated and illustrated book of Jack Smith artwork, photography, ephemera, short stories, poetry and correspondence in an edition of 300 copies. It is risograph-printed featurting covers with a tipped-on photographic print. The edition is wrapped in silkscreened fold-out dustjacket. Wait For Me At The Bottom Of The Pool was edited by Johan Kugelberg and John Zorn.

Boo-Hooray also produced a silkscreened print of Jack Smith’s drawing “Lobotomy in Lobsterland,” as well as Two Press Releases by Jack Smith. Two Press Releases  is a miniature facsimile reprint by Boo-Hooray of Jack Smith’s press releases for ”Francis Francine’s Period a Day Late” (ca. 1963) and “Hamlet and the 1001 Psychological Jingoleanisms of Prehistoric Landlordism of Rima-Puu” (1971). For our Small Little Series, we also printed “Selections from Jack Smith’s Record Collection,” which came with a CD of the titular music selections.

“Wait For Me At The Bottom Of The Pool” was Boo-Hooray’s second installment of exhibitions celebrating Jonas Mekas’ 90th birthday.

BOO-HOORAY exhibits both at home in New York City as well as internationally. We also stage collaborative exhibitions with the Hayward Gallery and Rough Trade in London, Tsutaya Daikanyama, Hysteric Glamour, and United Arrows in Tokyo, Galleri Operatingplace in Stockholm, Colette in Paris, PopMontreal in Montreal, Mishka Los Angeles, Printed Matter at both MOCA/LA and PS1/NYC, and Gavin Brown’s Enterprise, the New York Public Library, the Grolier Club, and Milk Gallery in New York.

Boo-Hooray exhibitions have included shows featuring Larry Clark, The Velvet Underground, Ray Johnson, Afrika Bambaataa, Jonas Mekas, Ed Sanders, Linder Sterling and Jon Savage, Spencer Sweeney, Houston Rap, private press vinyl, Wallace Berman, anarcho-punk group Crass, Jason Polan, Jack Smith, cult-filmmaker Ed Wood, and Situationist Times editor Jacqueline de Jong.

The exhibitions are drawn from cultural archives that Boo-Hooray excavates, organizes, and places in institutions such as Columbia University’s Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Cornell University’s Division of Rare Manuscript Collections, Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, and the University of Oxford’s Bodleian Library.