TOMPKINS SQUARE SHOW
March 8 - April 8, 2006
Opening reception: March
Charlie Balletto, Graciela Cassel, Ben Cell, Jennifer Elia, Maria Dieppa, Miguel Loredo, Michael
Norkin, Nina Teglio, Jongwang Lee, Allan Jay, Ramirex, Sandra de la Cruz, Steven Lapcevic, Fiorella Vano
JUNKIE by William Burroughs was considered unpublishable more than it was controversial. Burroughs began it
largely at the request and insistence of Allen Ginsberg , who was impressed by Burroughs's letter writing skill. Burroughs
took up the task with little enthusiasm. However, partly because he saw that becoming a publishable writer was possible (his
friend Jack Kerouac had published his first novel The Town and the City in 1950), he began to compile his experiences as an
addict, 'lush roller' and small-time Greenwich Village heroin pusher.
There is no doubt that Burroughs's work would not have been published but for Allen Ginsberg's drive and determination.
Apart from his own artistic output, Ginsberg can justly be remembered as a great teacher of writing. Throughout his life,
he shepherded many artistic works to fruition. Junkie was probably the first. Besides encouraging Burroughs to write, he worked
as editor and agent for the manuscript while the manuscript was written in Mexico City during Burroughs' forced flight from
pending drug charges in New Orleans . The companion piece to Junkie, Queer, was written at the same time and parts of Queer
were designed to be included in Junkie, since the first manuscript was dismissed as poorly written and lacking in interest
and insight. After many rejection letters, Burroughs stopped writing.
Ginsberg miraculously found a publisher in a psychiatric hospital in New Jersey. He had admitted himself to a Hoboken
hospital after getting kicked out of Columbia University. Carl Solomon, the owner and publisher of Ace Books, was pressured
to consider the work upon the insistence of his son, who had been hospitalized in the same facility as Ginsberg. With this
news, Ginsberg forced Burroughs to revisit the text. Allen soothed Burroughs's indignation at the necessary edits, and was
able to finally place the novel with the New York publishing house.
JUNKIE was the favorite book of Jean Michel Basquiat and he was part of New York's churning underground arts scene
of the late '70s and '80s, when downtown galleries, lofts and clubs seethed with creativity, roiled by a confluence of musicians,
artists and writers -- overlapping generations of the avant-garde -- the likes of which had rarely been seen.
Basquiat didn't seem destined from birth to be an artist, or an outsider. His father was an
accountant, and he grew up comfortably in a middle-class home. But he dropped out of high school at 17, a year from graduation,
and moved to lower Manhattan, living for a time in a box in Tompkins Square Park.
TOMPKINS SQUARE SHOW is featuring artists reflecting about complexity
of human condition. How does the Society influence the artist...?How does
the environment influence the artist's behavior?..... The process of Creativity is a status of
inner self, and art becomes the channel to scream his pain, anger and ideas.
TOMPKINS SQUARE SHOW was curated by RAMIREX
TOMPKINS SQUARE Gallery
331 East 10th St, New York, NY10009
Tel. 646. 271 9808