GO: Patti Smith x AGO
March 12, 2013
With all the hype around the AGO’s newest exhibit, Patti Smith: Camera Solo, we want to focus on one of the icon’s other timeless works, Just Kids. While we encourage you to see this beautiful, subtle exhibition, (image above), we want to provide a little background for those who an unfamiliar with the legendary Patti Smith.
Published in 2010, the tenderly and beautifully written memoir of the folk singer, poet, photographer, artist is a critically acclaimed, award-winning best-seller that has circulated around the Faulhaber office multiple times. Just Kids perfectly embodies exactly what New York became to a pair of lovers, friends, soul mates, muses, and artists. Through chronicling special moments in her awakening as an artist, Smith remembers her first interactions with the likes of Bob Dylan, Sam Sheppard, Jimi Hendrix, and a sweet moment with a sad bemoaned Janis Joplin in which Smith sings a song so touching that the words leap sadly off the page and fill your eyes with tears. The main story vibrates around the religious and intertwined lives of Patti Smith and Robert Mapplethorpe, their love, creation and mischief. Smith invites us into their beautiful and tragic lives, while we witness the gut-wrenching birth of their own celebrity.
Each time someone in our office finished the book we mourn the loss again of our beloved Mapplethorpe, share the glee of Patti’s interactions with her hero, the allusive Bod Dylan and her own budding love with Allen Lanier. We have selected some of our favorite moments from the bio to share:
“I imagined myself as Frida to Diego, both muse and maker. I dreamed of meeting an artist to love and support and work with side by side.”
“Everything distracted me, but most of all myself.”
“I wish I could just project everything on the paper,”
“We never had any children,” he said ruefully. “Our work was our children.”
“I hated the soup and felt little for the can.”
“We went our separate ways, but within walking distance of one another.”
“We learned we wanted too much. We could only give from the perspective of who we were and what we had. Apart, we were able to see with even greater clarity that we didn’t want to be without each other.”