Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Artist Re-Enacts Freaky Blues Tradition

LONDON (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – One artist’s love of the American deep South and a local blues legend led him on a weird journey.

For London-based Gallery 176’s current exhibition titled, A Tradition I Do Not Mean To Break, which runs until August, artist David Blandy created a film installation called Crossroads inspired by the history of iconic blues singer Robert Johnson.

According to folklore, Johnson sold his soul to the Devil in exchange for becoming the greatest blues musician the world has ever seen.

To honor Johnson and the freaky tale, Blandy went to the crossroads where Johnson supposedly sold his soul with an electric guitar and attempted to make his own exchange with Satan, but old Beelzebub didn’t seem to be in the market for a new soul.

Johnson also dons what he calls “inverted blackface” – a white face with black lips – and visits Johnson’s grave, which audience members can watch from a viewing area that’s a replica of a Southern porch with swings and rocking chairs.

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