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Devendra Banhart's Art Shoulder To Shoulder With Paul Klee's at SFMOMA

Friday, December 07, 2007

(Art Piece Above By Paul Klee)

One of the most soul-stirring and exciting things I stumbled upon when I was up in San Francisco about a week ago with some amigos, was an exhibit The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) put on. It is called Abstract Rhythms: Paul Klee and Devendra Banhart. Paul Klee was a Swiss Expressionist Painter (1879-1940) who wove images consisting of beautiful simplicity and sometimes overwhelping (yes, I said overwhelping) array of colors and random shapes that just make you truly pause and ponder. He was an accomplished violinist who had performed in concerts and his art was very much influenced by music. Coming from a family of musicians probably helped add to this inspiration. He then went on to branch out into drawing, printmaking, and paintings. After all, does not art and music not go hand in hand and "correspond like puzzle pieces" (As Ben Gibbard points out)?
Alongside Paul Klee's display of pieces are abstract folk singer Devendra Banhart's 13 pieces, all on paper and mainly composed of varied ink colors. The warm tones and strange abstractions, yet comforting pieces of Devendra's are as eye-catching as Paul Klee's and go oh-so-very-well together. Some of the artwork displayed is from Devendra's most recent September release, Smokey Rolls Down Thunder Canyon (XL Recordings), many of the other pieces seeming to go very well along with the album's theme. This album is a cluster and work recorded in a house in Topanga Canyon area of LA with some comrades of Devendra's including Gael Garcia Bernal, Pete Newsome, Vetiver's Andy Cabic, and Vashti Bunyan, among many many others.
If you can make it up to San Francisco anytime soon (or live there), you can get a double-treat if you go on January 17th. There is a live, mostly acoustic, performance by Devendra Banhart at 8pm at the Phyllis Watts Theater.

This exhibition is on display from now - February 24, 2008. Go!

Cristobal-Devendra Banhart (and Gael Garcia Bernal)
The Other Woman- Devendra Banhart (and Friends)

"I should be as simple as a little folk song: artlessly sensual, open-eyed"
-Paul Klee

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posted by greenrussian, 8:00 AM

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